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Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures

  • Students on the Tours exchange

Summer Program in Tours, France

Spend the summer in France and earn USC credit 

The University of South Carolina in Tours, France


Each summer, the University of South Carolina offers a study program in Tours, France. Courses are held at the Institut de Touraine in the heart of Tours. 

The city of Tours is a charming provincial city of around 200,000, located in the beautiful Loire Valley, commonly referred to as the "jardin de la France." The region is famous for its fine wines and mild weather, its châteaux (former residences of French royalty) and its "pure" French, free from regional accent. Tourism is the major industry. The city is under an hour from Paris by TGV, the modern high-speed train, and there are departures for Paris almost every hour. The historic heart of the city, the "Vieux Tours," boasts many restored buildings dating from the Renaissance. It is closed to traffic, and the pedestrian streets are lined with numerous cafés, restaurants, perfect for enjoying local cuisine and the sights and sounds of a warm summer evening. UofSC's month in Tours coincides with numerous summer festivals.

The Institut de Touraine was founded in 1922 and has a distinguished history of teaching French to foreign students, beginners as well as advanced, who come from all over the world for intensive immersion programs throughout the year. 2022 marked UofSC's 41st anniversary in Tours. Courses are taught entirely in French by native speakers. Classes are small, held in beautiful restored facilities, in and around the Place du 14 juillet, and the atmosphere is friendly. Students in the month-long June or July sessions generally average 21.5 hours a week in class, M-F. Excursions in the afternoons and on week-ends to various châteaux and to other tourist attractions are organized by the Institut at reduced fees. A wide variety of sporting activities are available as well, from swimming to kayaking to biking. The UofSC Director in Residence also proposes and organizes excursions: bicycle trips, chateaux visits, picnics, etc.

General Program Information

Program Dates: May - July , 2024 (exact dates TBD)
Preliminary Application Deadline: February 1, 2024 

Requirements for Admission:
Students will normally have completed FREN 122 or scored an F5 on the Placement Test to be eligible to participate in the UofSC in Tours Program. Enrollment exceptions can be made for students who do not meet this pre-requisite if, and only if:

  1. they do not intend to use French to fulfill their language requirement, or
  2. they do intend to use French to fulfill their language requirement and (re)take the Placement Test upon their return. If they achieve a score of F5 or better, the six hours of academic credit can be used either toward the French minor requirements or the French major pre-requisites or, if not pursuing a French major or minor, may be distributed as their academic advisors see fit. If, however, they do not achieve an F5 or better, they must complete the coursework appropriate to their degree’s language requirement, and the six hours of academic credit may be distributed as their academic advisors see fit. 

Available Courses:
1. Nine levels of French language courses are offered by the Institut. The upper levels include literature, culture and business French options. The student's level will be determined by diagnostic exams to be given at the Institut during the first day's orientation.

  1. Classes and Grades: Courses at the Institut meet Monday through Friday for a total of 21.5 hours/week, for four weeks. Grades are determined by the Program Director, based on reports provided by the Institut faculty, and are directly transferable to UofSC.

Six hours of undergraduate credit are granted by the University of South Carolina and are generally transferable to other U.S. institutions.

The faculty are exclusively those of the Institut de Touraine, although a faculty member from the University of South Carolina will be in residence. S/he will also advise on travel, organize extra-curricular activities, handle all registration and fee payments, oversee program participants' general well-being.

Travel, Accommodations and Meals:
1. Travel: Travel options to and from France will be discussed at meetings.
2. Accommodations and Meals: Single rooms in family homes screened by the Institut. Breakfast and dinner "en famille" as well as laundry service are included in the price. Though normally within walking distance, home locations may be in other parts of the city and require city bus transportation to and from class. The Director will make arrangements. Other housing arrangements (dorm rooms, studios, apartments) can also be made via the Director and the Institut. A wide variety of inexpensive and moderately-priced restaurants and cafés are within easy walking of the Institut. It stays light until 10 PM in Tours in summer.

Scholarship opportunities:

  • The Carolina Global Study Scholarship Application deadline is March 15, 2024
  • The Maxcy Travel Grant Scholarship - Rolling deadline, but suggested receipt by March 1, 2024.
  • The French program study abroad scholarships application deadline is February 15, 2024.

For more information, please contact:

Director, USC in Tours, 2023
Dept. of Languages, Literatures, & Cultures
Humanities Office Bldg. 820
University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208
Tel: (803) 777-4881; Fax: (803) 777-0454


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