For anyone who has moved to a new country, learning the language is the quickest way to integrate yourself into everyday life and truly get the most out of your stay. It can also serve you in good stead for future years, improve your job opportunities and is a great chance to meet a diverse range of people.
Photo: Atelier 9
In Paris there are a wide number of French language schools offering a variety of courses to suit different preferences and needs. We’ve done some research and picked out three of the best, based on a number of factors including range of courses available, price and student reviews.
Founded in 2002, Atelier 9 is housed within a traditional Parisian apartment in the city’s fashionable theatre district. The school offers Intensive, Semi-Intensive and Extensive Evening courses. Courses are available for as little as one week (21.5 hours of lessons), meaning that short-term visitors to Paris have plenty of options. Course material and enrolment fees are included in the price. The school also runs regular extra-curricular activities, including ballet, cooking, dancing, swimming, tennis and yoga. While the school doesn’t have its own dedicated accommodation service, it does partner with a local agency to help students find somewhere to stay during their time in Paris.
Spread across two sites, one in Notre Dame and the other close to the Eiffel Tower, this language school offers a language level placement test before arrival to help assess the best course for your needs. There are a range of courses on offer, including Standard programmes, Intensive programmes, and Super-Intensive programmes, many of which would be suitable for short-term visitors to Paris. Also popular are its French + Paid Job programme, which is ideal for those planning to work in Paris to fund their studies, and its French + Gastronomy programme, which combines language lessons with a chance to pick up some classic French cooking skills. A comprehensive accommodation service help students find their preferred place of residence.
Over thirty years old, Accord is one of Paris’s most well-established language schools. Housed on the second floor of an eye-catching Parisian building in the city centre, close to some of its most famous attractions, the school offers a variety of programmes of different lengths, intensity and focus, including courses for absolute beginners. Among those suitable for visitors only planning to stay in Paris for a short period is the General Language Intensive course, which can be booked for 1 week or more and features 5-6 daily lessons of 45 minutes. For leisure, the school runs dance classes for enrolled students. There’s also a dedicated accommodation service.
Situated in a tranquil side street, but within easy reach of several shops, bars, and restaurants, Sprachcaffe’s Parisian school has a range of amenities including a library and computer lab, as well as a lounge and cafeteria, for the use of students. There are Standard, Intensive and Private courses available, with standard courses comprising 20 lessons a week. Business and exam preparation courses are also on offer. The school prides itself on the fact that 100% of its tutors hold a university degree. Students can book homestay accommodation through the school as well.
One of Paris’ oldest language schools, LSI is located in the heart of the city, virtually next door to the famous Pompidou Centre. Spread across 7 classrooms, lessons are taught by experienced tutors well trained in getting the best out of students. As for the programmes on offer, there are a range of course of varying durations and intensity, meaning there’ll be one to suit every student’s needs. Among them are courses that combine language study with gastronomy and art history lessons, designed to immerse students in French culture. There are also plenty of on-site amenities, including a computer lab, library, well-equipped kitchen, snacks and drinks machines, lounge, and movie room. Outside the classroom, leisure activities arranged by the school include ballet, basketball, horse riding and yoga. Students can also book their accommodation though the school.