University of Lausanne
Lausanne is a charming city of 125,000 people located on the picturesque shores of Lake Geneva. The medieval Old Town, built between the 12th and 13th centuries, is centered around an impressive Gothic cathedral on one of Lausanne's hills, with amazing views of the city, the lake, and the Alps. Surrounding the Old Town is a modern city with pedestrian shopping areas and a wide range of cultural activities. Known as the Olympic Capital, Lausanne also offers state-of-the-art recreational facilities and the surrounding area provides plenty of outdoor opportunities such as cycling, hiking, skiing and snowboarding. Its location also allows for easy travel to neighboring France, Italy, and Germany.
The University of Lausanne (UNIL) was founded in 1537. Today it is composed of seven faculties, with over 14,000 students. It is an international institution with 20% of its students coming from outside Switzerland. Courses are taught in French but some Master's programs are available in English. UNIL offers state-of-the-art facilities and a wide range of sporting and cultural activities. The campus is connected to the city of Lausanne by an excellent public transportation network, giving students easy access to the city and the lake.
At the University of Lausanne, exchange students have several study options:
Regular Courses Taught in French
Students with advanced skills in French can take any courses taught in French that are open to exchange students. These include courses in the faculties of arts, biology and medicine (excluding medicine), business and economics, geosciences and the environment, law and criminal justice, social and political sciences, and theology and religious studies.
Full-Time Studies in French Language
Exchange students who have completed at least 2 semesters of college-level French are eligible to study French full time for one or two semesters. The School of French as a Foreign Language offers a full-time course in French language that provides intensive French language training in both the linguistic and cultural dimensions, and related studies of literature, linguistics, and language teaching. Students at the intermediate level would likely participate in the preparatory program for university studies while students at the advanced level would likely participate in the diploma program.
Regular Courses Taught in English
Most of the courses taught in English are offered at the Master's level. These include Master's programs in economics, finance, management, evolutionary biology, and English language and literature. At the undergraduate level, courses taught in English are offered primarily in English language and literature.
Combining French Language Courses with Regular Courses
The School of French as a Foreign Language offers supplementary courses to students at all levels of French. There are basic courses that focus on the oral and written aspects of the language, and option courses that focus on French culture. These courses can be combined with regular courses taught in English or French.
UNIL operates on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). The UB Study Abroad Programs Office converts half credit for ECTS credits. For example, a 6 ECTS credit course taken at UNIL will convert back as 3 UB credits. In many cases a course at UNIL may be worth 5 ECTS credits which will be rounded up to 3 UB credits (not 2.5 credits). Students should enroll in a minimum of 24 ECTS credits per semester to earn 12 UB credits (full time status); however, most students enroll in 30 ECTS credits per semester to earn 15 UB credits. Please see UB Study Abroad Programs with any questions on credit conversion.
UNIL has several off-campus halls of residence managed by Lausanne Homes for Students Foundation (FMEL). The rooms are single rooms with private or shared bathrooms and communal facilities such as kitchens and living areas. Shared student apartments are also available in some of the halls. Please visit the UNIL housing options website for more information.
Estimated costs for this program can be found at the top of this page next to Budget Sheets by clicking on the term.
UB students are encouraged to apply for study abroad scholarships. To learn more about the scholarships available to UB students, please visit our scholarships page.
UNIL operates on a semester system but the fall semester does not end until late January. Therefore students are encouraged to apply for the full year or spring semester.
Fall Semester*: Early September - Late January
Spring Semester: Mid February - Early July
*Students who want to spend only the fall semester at UNIL must inform the UB Study Abroad office before submitting an application to see if it is possible to finish in December. This requires special permission from UNIL and only a small number of departments will allow this as it requires giving students special final assessments.
Academic Year: March 1
Spring Semester: October 1
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Visit the University of Lausanne website.