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Program Structure

Paris Institute of Creative Arts offers a 3 to 4 week Study Abroad Summer Session in Paris beginning in early June. Students have the choice of enrolling for 3 to 6 credits of coursework.

Summer Study Options

Some students may be interested in concentrating on improving their French language skills. For these students, there is the possibility of taking 4 to 6 credits with our partner school at the Institute de langues et culture françaises. The second option is a focus on art history and art or photography. Students taking this option will all take a 3 credit course on the art and architectural history of Paris and have an option to take a second 3 credit class in digital photography.

Art Studies Option

We offer an option for English language classes: for this option, students are required to take the History of Art & Architecture in Paris class and can add an additional 3 credits of coursework by taking the Digital Photography class.

French Language Option

The second option is to concentrate on French language classes which can be taken for 4 to 6 credits total.

U.S. Accredited Classes

All courses are college accredited through Whittier College in California and students shouldn’t have any trouble transferring these credits to their home schools. It is advisable for students to consult with their own school advisor and/or registrar to make sure these courses will fulfill your needs as your work toward your diploma.

Summer Program: June Session (3 Weeks) Total Credits: 3-6

Subjects: History of Art & Architecture in Paris (3 credits), Digital Photography (3 credits) or French Language (from beginning to advanced levels) (4-6 credits)

Classroom Structure & Instruction:

Art History Class:  This class will meet 3 to 4 hours per day, Monday through Thursday with one Friday excursion. The Art History class combines in-class lectures, discussion, and on-site visits to art museums as well as visits to different monuments and historical sites around Paris. In addition to the visits, students will be required to complete reading assignments in preparation for the visits. The class will be reading intensive with a writing component requiring work outside of regular class-time.

Digital Photography Class: A hands-on course meets 4 hours per day, Monday through Thursday. One Friday field trip is scheduled during the session. Class combines extensive field trip visits in and around Paris. Much of the class will take place in the streets and parks of the city as we look at the many diverse neighborhoods in Paris. We’ll also visit some gallery and/or museum photography exhibits. Students will be asked to write two or three short papers relating to exhibits and/or readings given in class. Students will be required to do some additional reading/writing assignments outside class as well as some photography and photo editing work.

French Language Class:  These classes will meet 4 hours per day (21 hours per week) Monday through Friday. Students are placed at their appropriate level in French. Classes focus on French grammar and improving aural comprehension and written and verbal communication skills. These intensive courses are ideal for making significant progress in language skills in a short period. Normally, students are discouraged from taking other classes in addition to the intensive French language class although exceptions may be made to add on the Digital Photography class. French Language classes are offered by our partner the Institut de langue et de civilisation françaises.

Grading and Evaluation: Students are graded using the American University model of evaluation.

Transcripts: Students will receive a PICA transcript at the conclusion of their study period (usually within two weeks of the final exam). For those students needing a transcript directly from our accrediting university (Whittier College in California), this can also be sent.

Field Trips: Every student has the opportunity to participate in at least one walking tour of Paris during the orientation period. Most art history and studio art courses integrate on-site visits to museums and exhibitions and may also require day trips. Special excursions are considered an integral part of the course curriculum and attendance is mandatory. Museum entry fees during class time are covered by the PICA program.

Activities for all students covered by the activities fee:

  • Orientation excursions within Paris
  • Welcome Dinner
  • Two day trips outside Paris (Versailles, Fontainebleau, Provins, Troyes, Chantilly, Giverny are some of the possibilities).

Registering for Courses:

  • Students will be invited to pre-register for classes after they have been accepted into the program.
  • Students may enroll for either 3, 4 or 6 credits of coursework.
  • Students wishing to take the French Language class have the option of 4 or 6 credits.
  • Students not taking French are required to take the Art History class for 3 credits and have the option to add a Digital Photography class for another 3 credits.

Contact us to learn more

Start Your Summer Registration Here!

Click here to begin your PICA Application process with our partner Athena Abroad.

Summer Program Costs

Learn more about Paris on these other PICA pages: