Studying a language in-country is always the best, fastest and most enjoyable way to pick up a language or to improve your level.
Vichy, also known as “The Queen of the Water Towns”, is famous around the world for its thermal spas and cosmetic products that have attracted royalties and celebrities for over 200 years.
Located in Auvergne, a beautiful French region, famous for its volcanoes, parks, lakes and rivers, Vichy has plenty of sightseeing and many activities to offer: shows, concerts, horse races and water sports on the lake to name just a few.
With classes taught at 15 different levels, this French program based in Vichy, France is for anyone with an interest in French and the French culture. Taught by CAVILAM (reputed for its training of French language teachers) in partnership with Clermont-Ferrand universities, this is a top language program.
Classes include 26 sessions of 45 minutes weekly:
- 18 courses in groups of corresponding level
- 8 courses in theme workshops
Workshops are based on varied themes, depending on what your needs and interests are.
You’ll also have plenty of opportunity to take part in various field trips and cultural activities such as trekking up the Puy-de-Dome, wine tasting, visiting Lyon and Clermont-Ferrand, discovering the surrounding lakes and castles and many more.
Hear What a Returned Student Says About the Program
Additional Course Information
About the course
On the morning of arrival you sit a test to assess your level and to enable you to describe your objectives.
The weekly program includes 26 sessions of 45 minutes, made of 18 lessons in groups according to the level of ability and 8 themed workshops.
Workshops are based on themes such as French civilisation, extending vocabulary, everyday life, grammar practice, French through songs, written communication, French through the media, oral communication etc.
At the end of the course, you receive a certificate of attendance and a diploma cosigned by CAVILAM and the University Blaise Pascal.
University and Faculty
CAVILAM (Centre d’Approches Vivantes des Langues et des Médias)
CAVILAM (Centre d’Approches Vivantes des Langues et des Médias) is located in the centre of town, in a park beside the river. It offers extensive facilities including 30 classrooms, a lecture hall, 2 large multi-purpose rooms, a multi-media research centre and 4 multi-media laboratories. It is an internationally renowned centre for research and contributes to new developments in the field of language teaching. All teachers have university diplomas.
The accommodation for the intensive French program is a real highlight – it will be a homestay with a amongst a number of Vichy locals!
Over many years, CAVILAM has worked with a huge number of homestay families, over time working out who are the friendliest and most accommodating and continuing to work with them. AIM Overseas always receives great feedback on this aspect of the program.
You’ll stay in a single room with a local family – note that a ‘family’ might be a ‘traditional’ family of parents and kids, but might also be a couple with no children, a grandmother or another combination. What they have in common is the great reception they’ll provide you – your family will come to meet you at the train station when you arrive from Paris and also provide your breakfasts and dinners daily whilst you’re on the program.
Hear the experiences of other students on this program
“I think being constantly surrounded by French – quite literally from the moment you get up in the morning to the moment you go to sleep – has really helped me to finally click into gear and all the years of practice I have behind me have finally begun to pay off. Largely I’ve learnt to trust myself and my French abilities and to just have a crack at speaking even if I’m not 100% sure on how to say what I want. After all, I’m here to learn French and there’s no way I’ll improve without trying!”
- Aysha, Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies. READ MORE
“In Vichy, I’m staying with the sweetest grandmother, Mimi! I’m sharing the house with two other students from China and Spain who also attend CAVILAM (the Centre of Live Approaches to Languages and the Media). Mimi is the sweetest thing- she insists on two kisses on each cheek before I leave the house in the morning! Myself being Persian, this kind of thing comes naturally! She also cooks the most fantastic food, and writes every word I don’t understand on a little slip of paper so I can learn! Of course it naturally helps us learn the language when she doesn’t speak English- I love it!”
- Sadaf, Bachelor of International and Global Studies. READ MORE
“Armed with full winter gear of gloves, beanie, scarf and a coat, I headed off to CAVILAM to my 8:45am class with Marie on Monday morning. I grabbed my daily hot chocolate from the vending machine which sold a lot of my favourites like ‘Knorr Soup’, endless choices of coffee and food and snacks that I could live on the off chance zombies would attack and I’d need food”
- Kim Panti, Bachelor of Arts and Law. READ MORE
France located in Western Europe, embraces medieval and port cities, tranquil villages, mountains and Mediterranean beaches. France is about world-class art and architecture. It seduces with iconic landmarks known the world over and rising stars yet to be discovered. This country’s cultural repertoire is staggering – in volume and diversity. And this is where the beauty of la belle France lies: when super stars like Mademoiselle Eiffel, royal Versailles and the celebrity-ridden French Riviera have been ticked off, there’s ample more to thrill. France is, after all the world’s top destination with some 85 million visitors each year who flock to the land of the Gauls to feast of its extraordinary wealth of museums, galleries, ateliers (artist workshops) and hands-on cultural experiences.
Vichy is cradled in the bend of the Allier River, and is filled with beautiful scenery from detailed architecture to mountains and lush landscapes. Tree-lined boulevards lay out in the 19th century and art-deco buildings like the Opera de Vichy add to the town’s nostalgic feel. There are some excellent sporting facilities including a 120 hectares multi-sports park, golf courses, a complex housing a swimming pool and tennis courts, horse riding centres and water sports. Field trips and cultural activities are there for anyone wanting to go out and about, trekking up the Puy-de-Dome, visiting Lyon and Clermont-Ferrand, discovering the surrounding lakes and castles or enjoying French food and wine tasting. Vichy is also “The Queen of the Water Towns”, famous around the world for its thermal spas and cosmetic products that have attracted royalty and celebrities for over 200 years!
Credit and Funding
All our programs are designed to count for credit as electives. However, it is up to your university to decide whether they will approve some credit for your participation in one of our programs. Normally it is a course convenor, Head of Department or program convenor who approves your credit.
Course convenors will not be able approve credit for a course unless you have a copy of the syllabus, so you should not visit your course convenor until you have received a copy of the course syllabus from AIM Overseas. You will receive this in your AIM Overseas acceptance pack, along with information about how to apply for credit at your university.
You might be able to obtain the $6000+ OS-HELP loan, as well as a scholarship from your university, when participating in an AIM Overseas program.
Our programs are designed so that eligible Australian students can access the OS-HELP scheme, which can provide funding of over $6,000 for international study experiences.
We give you detailed information about OS-HELP and how to apply for it in your Initial Consultation with us, as well as in your AIM Overseas acceptance pack.
Many Australian universities offer scholarships for their students to take part in overseas study programs. We will provide you information on scholarships that we are aware of at your university as part of your application/acceptance for a program. You can also check your university’s international office webpage to see what might be offered.
Applications for our January 2018 programs are now closed.
We are no longer taking applications for our January 2018 round of programs. Applications for our July 2018 programs will be open on October 16th.
If you wish to know more, or if you have any questions about our programs please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or (02) 9975 7792. You can also refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.
Alternatively, you can register your interest now for a January 2019 or July 2018 program, meaning you’ll receive updates (via email and phone) prior to the application deadline and when applications are open.