Engineering is a popular field of study in French universities. France has several universities that are known worldwide for their standards of excellence in the fields of mathematics, science, and engineering. Some are public state-run universities, while others are prestigious grandes écoles that focus specifically on engineering. Here are the best engineering schools in France.
1. École Polytechnique – The École Polytechnique is the by far the best engineering school in France. It is the only French institution to rank within the top 50 engineering/technology universities in The Times Higher Education World University Rankings for 2011-2012 (it ranked 29th). It is a relatively small state-run school located in Palaiseau, which is near Paris.
2. École Normale Superieure (ENS) – ENS is one of the most prestigious of the grandes écoles, or higher education institutions outside the public university system. Located in Paris, it was originally established to train new teachers for the Republic after the French Revolution. It focuses on training and research.
3. Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UMPC) – UMPC has the largest scientific and medical complex in France, with 120 laboratories and 3,500 doctoral students. It is a leader in mathematics and information technology studies with a large number of research efforts devoted to modelling and engineering. UMPC is located in Paris.
4. Université Joseph Fourier (UJF) – UJF focuses on the fields of science, technology, and health. Over 18,000 undergraduate and graduate students attend the university. It has many research laboratories, some of which are associated with major research institutions such as the National Centre of Scientific Research. UJF is located in Grenoble, where it was founded by Joseph Fourier in 1811.
5. École nationale des ponts et chausses (ENPC) – ENPC, often called “les Ponts,” is the world’s oldest civil engineering school, established in 1747. It offers six different postgraduate engineering degrees, as well as doctoral programmes. ENPC is also one of the prestigious grandes écoles and is located in Marne-la-Vallée, a suburb of Paris.
6. Institut National des Science Appliquées (INSA) Lyon – INSA Lyon is a grandes école specifically for engineers. Its five-year curriculum trains students in the fundamental sciences needed to study engineering, then allows them to specialize in one of 12 fields. About 900 students obtain the Master of Engineering Degree from INSA Lyon.
This article was written by Dawn Lovett, who has worked in electronic and computer engineering for over 20 years. She owns the site Online Engineering Degrees for students interested in getting an online degree in engineering.