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Study in Versailles, France

Population: 89,490

City Overview

Few places have the historic significance of Versailles. For over a century it was the capital of the kingdom of France, before becoming the hub of the French Revolution. It is also famous for being the site on which the treaty that brought an end to World War 1 was signed.

Located in the western suburbs of Paris just 17.1km from the centre, it is a picturesque and wealthy suburb centred about its famous Palace and gardens which were the centre of the ruling-class wealth and decadence that led to revolution.

Education profile

Versailles has many institutions which are available for postgraduate study:
Graduate programs in France fall into three main categories:
  • Taught Masters (MAs/MScs/MEng)
  • Research Masters (MRes/ MA by Research)
  • Doctorates and PhDs
Taught Masters are postgraduate courses that follow a similar pattern to undergraduate study, with lectures, seminars and tutorials. You will be expected to research topics yourself and take and independent approach to studying.

Research Masters are often seen as pre-cursor to a PhD. You will research a particular topic independently and focus on improving your research skills to produce a dissertation or final projects.

Masters programs in France generally last between 1-2 years, with PhDs taking up to four years to complete. 

Immigration and visas

EU citizens are permitted to take a graduate program in France providing they fulfil the following:
  • Are studying in France for more than three months.
  • Are enrolled at an accredited university or institution.
  • Have proof of sufficient funds to cover your graduate program in France for its duration.
  • Have health insurance cover.
Non-EU students looking for a graduate program in Paris will need to apply for an extended-stay student visa, with residency permit (VLS-TS).

When a VLS-TS visa is issued, students will be given an official form that they must present to the French office of immigration and integration (OFII).

A VLS-TS holder must, upon arriving in France, send to the OFII by registered mail (return receipt requested):
  • The official form received from the consulate that issued the visa.
A copy of passport pages showing the visa holders identity and the stamp indicating entry into France (or into the Schengen area).

Life in Versailles

Versailles is quite unique in France, being a stunning place to live in its own right but also sitting within a stone’s throw of the excitement of Paris. This makes Versailles a great place to be a postgraduate student.

Because of its position as a tourism hotspot and its close proximity to the capital Versailles is a more expensive place to live compared to other places in France.

Working in Versailles

If you are a postgraduate student from inside the EU you are entitled work in Versailles provided the institution you are enrolled at provides access to the student social security scheme.

For other foreign students, since 2007 the student residence card has replaced the need to get temporary authorisation to work in France. Foreign students can also work up to 60% of the statutory annual work time, the equivalent of a maximum of 964 hours per year. 


Generally student accommodation in France is considered expensive.

There are two main types of accommodation while studying:
  • University accommodation – such as halls of residence
  • Private accommodation – House and flat rentals
University accommodation is in very short supply, so most students end up living in private accommodation. The number of private student residences is on the increase, making it easier to find student accommodation in France.

CNOUS CROUS (the student social support service) and is usually reserved for government scholarship holders.

Campus France can help you with problems you might have with student housing in France, such as locating and reserving accommodation except for places in Paris.

Weather and Climate

Versailles has a climate typical of Western Europe, with warm and pleasant summers and cold, frosty winters. Summer time is at its hottest between July and August, when temperatures reach 25C. Sunshine is scarce in winter, when temperatures struggle to get above 5C. Although not a rainy a city, Paris is known for sudden, intense showers.

What to do next

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