Fees, finances and scholarships
Research, India


(PhD in France for Indian Students

A PhD in France is normally 3 years in duration with a possible extension of one more year. 

Doctoral candidates in French are not considered as students but more as early career researchers

PhD Programs are managed by Doctoral Schools (Ecoles Doctorales), that may be connected to one or several Universities. There are 300 Doctoral schools in France, and each of them specializes in a specific research field. Generally session begins from 1st September, but it can commence before of later in the year. 

Where to find PhD Position?

If you have completed or are about to complete a Master’s degree and would like to pursue a PhD in  France, there are many options at your disposal. The first is to ask one of your professors if he already knows another professor in France. In this case, you will have to identify a funding scheme. Find out whether your current institution has research agreements with a French institution. The second option is to directly apply to an already funded doctoral subject, calls for PhDs are regularly announced by French Universities and research organisations (e.g CNRS, CEA, Inserm etc). Also, the Science department of the French Embassy in India receives PhD openings from France and these are regularly posted on: frenchscienceindia.org and on phdinfrance.net. Undertaking a master degree research project in France (or a bachelor internship) is also a great way to get acquainted with French researchers.

Who can apply?

Aspiring candidates must hold a degree equivalent to a Master’s (5 years of higher education). PhD programs are open to ALL nationalities - Around 40% PhD candidates in France are foreign nationals.

When should I have to apply for a PhD?

Most of the PhD calls are announced between December and May. It is advisable to get in touch with the institutes to get more information.

How can I apply?

Each institution sets its own admission standards. The selection process is likely to include both written applications (CV, statement of purpose and academic references) and interviews.

Is French required? 

Most French laboratories are adapted to international students and English is spoken widely in all laboratories and doctoral schools. It is not compulsory to speak French. You can write your PhD thesis in English. However, a PhD in France is also an opportunity to learn French or improve your language skills!

How much does it cost?

Overall academic costs in France is affordable compared to other countries (around 500 €/year) as there is an additional Government support aided to Foreign students in promoting research. In addition there are several scholarships availablefor students to apply.

Can I find a job after my PhD in France?

French research institutes are amongst the best in the world and a PhD from one of these

 institutes gives access to opportunities for further research and a dynamic international environment to study, and to work. It will also aid you in finding better career prospects in the field of research, academia, industry, government sector, etc.

What kind of Visa should I apply for?

Once you are accepted in a PhD programme, your host institute in France will send you a “Convention d’accueil” (hosting agreement) allowing you to apply for a scientific visa: This visa is for all the researchers including PhD scholars under the scheme of Doctoral reseach programe in France.