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University of Burgundy

French courses for refugees

University Diploma (DU) French as a Foreign Language for Refugee Students

DU Passerelle – Etudiants en exil


This diploma is aimed at non Francophones and offers an integration pathway with an educational focus on French as a foreign language.

The objective of this programme is to prepare students for French-taught courses at the university, ease their transition into life in France, and to provide a foundation for their career.

The programme consists of:

  • intensive French lessons;
  • cultural activities promoting the expression and discovery of French society;
  • modules dedicated to supporting the student's academic or professional goals;
  • pairing uB students with students in the DU programme to encourage social insertion and the sharing of knowledge and experience.

Those eligible for the programme:

  • displaced persons who were not able to go to university in their country of origin (having only a high school diploma) or who had their studies disrupted;
  • those who have graduated (with bachelor or master level) who need to acquire a high level of French in order to practice their profession, take competitive and non-competitive examinations or to partially adjust their professional profile in order to access the French job market.

Status of the candidates:

  • refugees;
  • those under subsidiary protection;
  • asylum seekers.

Required language level:

  • the candidates must currently be acquiring a minimum level of A2 in French.

Education requirement of candidates:

  • have at least a secondary school diploma (Baccalaureate or foreign equivalent).
  1. Starting from 29 March 2021 send your application form by e-mail to Cette adresse e-mail est protégée contre les robots spammeurs. Vous devez activer le JavaScript pour la visualiser..
    The due date for applying is fixed at 15 May 2021 for students wishing to enrol in the programme for 2021/2022.
    If you have already sent your application during the year you must update your application by sending us the file for the 2021-2022 academic year.

    Download the application form
  2. If your application is preselected, you will be invited for an interview.
  3. If the interview goes well, the final step will be the French test.
  4. You will be notified of the final decision after this test.
  • The diploma is bound to the Faculty of Arts and Philosophy at the University of Burgundy.
  • Instruction takes place predominantly in the Droit-Lettres building on the Dijon campus, 2 Boulevard Gabriel.
  • The programme is capped at 45 participants.

The modules are designed for the academic year. The teaching is based on:

  • 4 modules comprising of classes in French as a foreign language and French for university objectives. Following the results of the language placement test, the students are placed into two groups;
  • 2 modules comprising of project workshops: an intercultural group project; an individual university and professional project.

Linguistic support is guaranteed throughout the year by student tutors and volunteers, in order to promote social insertion and to avoid drop outs through the year in case of difficulties.

The academic structure allows the participants to gain the linguistic and learning skills required in order to access their desired university study progarmme.

The lessons take place five days a week for two semesters with 3-5 contact hours each day. The project workshops can be modularized.

Total hours

The total number of programme hours per student is 460 per year; this is necessary to ensure the target language acquisition is achieved (up to B1 or B2 depending on their initial level) founded upon the guidance of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CECRL). The initial placement test is to split the students into the one of the two groups that suits their language level.

Programme Calendar for 2021/2022 academic year

Submitting applications
by email 
Until 15 May 2021.
Interviews May/June 2021 (depending of Coronavirus epidemic situation).
placement test
Beginning of September 2021.
Semester 1 From mid-September to 23 December 2021.
Semester 2 From January 2022 to mid-May 2022.


Candidates accepted into the University Diploma programme will carry out their administrative registration through the Faculty of Arts and Philosophy and will be exempt from enrolment fees.

  • Cette adresse e-mail est protégée contre les robots spammeurs. Vous devez activer le JavaScript pour la visualiser., in charge of the programme, lecturer and joint head of international relations at the Faculty of Arts and Philosophy.
  • University of Burgundy's Facebook page for migrants.
  • Testimonies of migrant students who benefited from French language courses for refugees and their French tutors.
  • ARAM association: created in 2017, this association, led by uB students and sponsored by the Student Life Council, aims to empower University Diploma candidates and their families to socially and culturally integrate into their new community. It mainly welcomes students, but anyone who is interested in meeting new people in a multicultural environment is welcome to join.
  • Ensemble en France platform about the values, habits and customs of the French. It provides a multilingual online training course made up of fun and varied educational resources: videos, cartoons, paintings, quizzes...
  • Mon French Kit (My French Kit) is the first educational game for smartphones meant to facilitate the integration process, aimed at those who need a residence permit to live in France. Mon French Kit is available for free on the Apple Store and Google Play.

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