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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, One of my main reasons for going to France is going to University there to avoid debt at the early stages of my life however when I look up to find the equivalent of a French Bac I get multiple contradicting answers. Of course, I am skeptical since these answers range from 2002 to 2015 and I can't seem to find any recent ones nor ones that fit my particular situation.

So, here's the deal, the primary school I wish to go to is Grenoble Alps. It's an international school with predominant English classes yet it's a French University, it even states that if your French isn't proficient enough (A B2 level) then you are given French courses alongside your courses of study. I've already found the equivalent of what GPA I need to enter into the school and mine is way above the requirement yet this Bac equivalent is stressing me out.

Here's what i got so far:

- A high school diploma
- Took all Honors classes all 4 years
- 2 AP classes in both English and Physics (passed with a 4 and 3)
- 3 recommendations letters from both AP teachers and honors algebra 2 teacher
- Lots of extra club activities
- High SAT scores

I've heard you're going to need one year of college under your belt yet I've also heard that it's greatly negotiable. I'm guessing they want to see that your educational experience is as high as they have in their schools if so wouldn't the honors and college courses I took count? I plan to master in immunology and currently want to go for a bachelor in biology or microbiology.

Will what I have suffice for my chances of getting in?

Thanks for anyone who replies. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I would also like to note that the website for Grenoble Alps University does not specify for a French Bac equivalent but does state that one must, "have obtained a foreign diploma giving access to higher education IN France."
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Actually, I just remembered I took a total of 3 AP classes, I think I got the highest score in the last one and I was part of the magnet program for all 4 years in my high school.
I don't know how that will translate to the admission officers in a favorable eye or not.
 

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France doesn't have an equivalent to the AP series of coursework, and while it won't hurt your chances, I think you'll find that they really are pretty adamant these days that you have to have one year of university level work successfully completed. This seems to stem from two factors:

First of all, the normal public school sequence in much of Europe is 13 years of primary-secondary education, followed by 3 years of college/university (tertiary education).

Secondly, the French are well aware of the way US universities work - in that your first year is mostly made up of "general" requirements before declaring your major. (And most US college students seem to change majors at least once during their 4 years in undergraduate education.) In France, you're assumed to have done all your general requirements when you enter university - and you enter university level study in a specific subject area. To "change major" you basically start all over again, because there isn't much transfer between the various study areas.

You could try offering a year of "junior college" or community college, but I have heard of folks who have difficulty explaining the concept to the French officials. Your best bet might be to work through Campus France USA and see what they can advise.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
AP work is the same as a college class here and they always give you massive amounts of college credit. The score depends on whether or not you pass and how much college credit you earn from it. All of my AP classes were core classes and the amount of credit I earned means I practically skip the first year of college anyway which is why I'm quite unsure.

Isn't it 12 years though? 5 years of elementary, 4 years of middle school and 3 years of high school while here it's 5 years elementary, 3 middle and 4 high school. Essentially the same amount of years.
 

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No, in France it's 13 years of public school as I understand it. Canada and Australia also have a 13 year system, as do other European countries. The undergraduate university program in most European countries runs for 3 years rather than 4 like in the US.

I know the AP system well. Had a couple of AP courses to my credit when I got out of high school (back in the Stone Age). But the AP classes still only let you opt out of the general requirements. The university programs here have no general education requirement. You start out in your "major" program.

But work with Campus France and see what they say about it. They may know of some way around the one year of university requirement.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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AP work is the same as a college class here and they always give you massive amounts of college credit. The score depends on whether or not you pass and how much college credit you earn from it. All of my AP classes were core classes and the amount of credit I earned means I practically skip the first year of college anyway which is why I'm quite unsure.

Isn't it 12 years though? 5 years of elementary, 4 years of middle school and 3 years of high school while here it's 5 years elementary, 3 middle and 4 high school. Essentially the same amount of years.
It is 5 years elementary 4 years middle school and 4 years high school in France. That makes 13 years of schooling. And Bev is right, you don't take gen ed classes while in college in Europe. A science majore won't have to take any literature classes and a Law student won't take much of science.
 
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