Paris Academia

Paris Academia, American University of Paris

Paris Academia welcomes intellectually driven high school students to learn from the finest teachers, scholars, and industry professionals at the American University of Paris, located in the heart of the 7th arrondissement. This summer program offers students a full Parisian university experience as you choose an academic major and minor, pursue subjects in the company of motivated peers, and engage with course material under the guidance of distinguished educators and academics.

High School

Grades 9–12
Motivated rising 9th graders will also be considered

Session 1

July 2-15, 2022

Session 2

July 16-29, 2022


1 session: $6,890
Link two sessions of any Academia programs and save $1,000 ($800 off tuition + no application fee)

View Seminars

Watch a Webinar

We invite you to watch our webinar about the Paris Academia experience.


Putney Student Travel, in its 71st year, is excited to offer Paris Academia at the American University of Paris (AUP), a program created in collaboration with Professor James Basker, a Barnard College/Columbia University professor and Oxford Rhodes Scholar. The AUP campus boasts state-of-the-art facilities in the heart of Paris’ 7th arrondissement, in walking distance of a plethora of Parisian history and culture.

This program is unique in offering—among other topics in the humanities and sciences—a focus on French for those who wish to improve their language skills. Students who wish to get ahead in French are evaluated and assigned to one of two levels. Both benefit from the opportunity to meet in the classroom at AUP, then to take the classroom to the city for an opportunity to put their French skills to work.

Whether in French or in English, all Paris Academia seminars are taught by distinguished academics and educators. Seminars might take students of art history to the Musée Rodin or the Pompidou Center, students of medicine to a visit of l’Institut Pasteur, or students of business to La Bourse, the French stock exchange. The location of the AUP campus is unmatched, overlooking the Seine and situated between the Eiffel Tower and Les Invalides, between the Musée d’Orsay and the Musée du Quai Branly.

The most urban of our slate of Oxford Academia programs, AUP housing is in a dedicated apartment building on the Champs-Élysées. Our program takes over the entire building, and students commute to campus on foot and by Métro with friends and residential staff.

Paris Academia is a wonderful opportunity to join like-minded students and inspiring instructors to bring a range of subjects to life, illuminated by the City of Lights. We hope you’ll join us this summer!

Photo: Professor James Basker, left, with students

American University of Paris

The American University of Paris is a vibrant urban campus, nestled in the heart of Paris’ 7th arrondissement. Some buildings overlook the Seine on the Quai d’Orsay, while others are tucked into the quiet St. Dominique neighborhood a few blocks away, between the Invalides and the Champ de Mars and Eiffel Tower. A mix of elegant historic structures and modern, state-of-the-art facilities, students are immersed in university life and inspired by the full Parisian experience.

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Paris Academia is designed for intellectually driven students to pursue an academic interest, without the pressure of grades or credit. Students enroll in a major seminar and a minor seminar, taught by academic faculty and active professionals, and engage with course material through lectures from guest speakers and scholars, small group projects, classroom discussion, and field-based learning. Seminars challenge students to ask questions, sharpen critical thinking and teamwork, and develop techniques essential for success at the university level.

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Educators & Scholars

Students gain inspiration and unparalleled insights from distinguished educators and academics, featured scholars, guest lecturers, and meetings with industry experts and thought leaders. Complement program-wide keynote lectures with seminar-specific guest speakers, who bring to the program diverse backgrounds with high-level, real-world experiences and insights.

Small seminar sizes allow for students to engage directly with these experts, learning from the best and deepening their passion for the subject.

Meet the Faculty Guest Speakers & Presentations

“Our daughter said the seminars blew her mind and that she learned SO much more than she expected. Totally engaging and useful. And we can’t wait to see how this new knowledge and perspective applies to her classes when she returns to school and beyond.”

— Kirsten & Michael Beckwith, Kentfield, CA

The Paris Academia Program Experience

Participating in the Paris Academia summer program means joining an inspiring academic community of student peers and distinguished educators. Over the course of your program, attend lectures with scholars, learn from esteemed guest speakers, participate in hands-on workshops and field trips, develop crucial skills to help you excel in your future studies, and gain lifelong friendships along the way.

History & Tradition

As one of the oldest American educational institutions in Europe, and the first in France, the American University of Paris is the ideal location to pursue academics and the arts in one of the world’s most intellectually stimulating cities. This summer, students will find inspiration in Paris’ vibrant social and cultural scene, following in the footsteps of world leaders, scientists, artists, and researchers—on the banks of the Seine, in the Musée d’Orsay up the street, at La Bourse, the French stock exchange, and more.

Accommodations & Meals

Paris Academia is based at the American University of Paris, where seminars meet daily. Students and residential faculty stay together in single or double rooms in private university apartments in a beautifully renovated hôtel particulier on the Champs-Élysées, a short commute from campus. We begin each day with a French continental breakfast on campus. Lunches are a combination of cafés, restaurants, and picnics. Students can buy picnic supplies in the Rue Cler market and eat under the Eiffel Tower, or grab a sandwich in a café in the Rue St. Dominique. Please note that lunches are not included in the tuition. Dinners are organized by the program at local restaurants.


Join a community of intellectually focused student peers, invested in personal and intellectual growth. Like you, they are curious about the world and eager to make their mark on it. Everyone attends Community Meeting each morning, where the group shares ideas, successes, and goals, and sets plans for the coming day. Become part of a community that supports and nurtures your interests, and make lasting friendships along the way.


In addition to your in-depth seminars, explore other interests and topics in elective lectures and workshops offered by instructors and visiting guests alike. Spend a day appreciating the architectural diversity of Paris, from the medieval alleyways of the Marais to the modern National Library and the towers of La Défense. Take a workshop in the art of traditional bread making as you learn about the history of Paris through the lens of a Parisian boulanger. Workshops range from a single afternoon to a multi-series event. Our base at the university is the perfect jumping-off point for visits to Montmartre, the Notre Dame construction site, the Île Saint-Louis, le Marais, and les Jardins du Luxembourg.


Choose a major seminar and a minor seminar, and dive deep into your academic subjects. Major seminars meet six days a week for three hours; minor seminars meet three days a week for two hours. Begin with classroom discussions that frame your seminar concepts and identify key issues. Then take the learning beyond the classroom with site visits, meetings with experts, and guest lectures from distinguished academics and renowned scholars.

Seminar groups have the option to leave the university on day trips to nearby Giverny, Versailles, and Chartres, as well as guest expert locations to find further inspiration and utilize all the region has to offer.

View Seminars

Program Structure

Each day features a combination of seminars, hands-on activities and workshops, lab time, guest speakers, community meeting, and unstructured time for socializing and reflection. Part of the Paris Academia experience includes commuting with friends and instructors to and from campus, a 20-minute walk or short Métro ride, immersing students in an urban existence in the charming and richly historic heart of Paris.

After breakfast, depending on the day, seminar learning may begin in classrooms, labs, or meeting spaces. After lunch taken independently in small peer groups, seminars continue. Afternoons and evenings offer opportunities for students to explore Paris and their interests beyond seminar topics through elective workshops, take part in exciting extracurricular activities, or work on their independent projects.

After dinner, students and instructors from all seminars convene for evening activities, which may include programming such as a keynote address, taking in a local play or concert, or an activity such as strolling the streets of Paris or a night visit to a museum. On the final days of the program, students focus on completing their independent projects, which they then present to the program community.

Day in the Life

Due to the dynamic nature of this summer program abroad, each day is different. Here is a snapshot of a day at Paris Academia.

Daily schedule

8 AM • Breakfast in the café at AUP and Community Meeting

9AM • Major seminars meet in classrooms, labs, studios, or out in the city

12PM • Lunch and free time

2PM • Minor seminars continue the day’s activities

4PM • Afternoon activities, workshops, or extracurriculars

6PM • Dinner at local restaurants

8PM • Evening programming, speakers, or activities

Outcomes & Final Projects

Paris Academia summer programs are designed to immerse students intellectually in their chosen seminar topic as they prepare academically and socially for the college experience. Over the course of the two-week summer program, each student develops a final project based on their particular interests, which they present to peers and instructors at the end of the program. Present your research on the Napoleonic Wars, prepare a seminar on the role of French investment in Africa, or share findings from meetings with local gender-rights activists.