Practical Information to prepare your stay


Here are some information and advice to best prepare your stay at the ENS de Lyon.


Welcome booklet for international students

Welcome Days

At the begining of each semester, the ENS International Student Office receives the international students. 

ENS de Lyon offers a full integration week, free of charges, with French as a Foreign Language courses, administrative times and cultural activities. It takes place at the end of August.

In 2022, we plan to have the integration week, from August, 25th to August, 31th (depending on the sanitary situation)

International mobility office and all services will welcome you during the week (beginning on August, 23th) to prepare your stay at ENS de Lyon. 

You will receive an email with more information in June. 

Please note that the first weeks of September are busy : administrative enrollment, welcome in the Faculty, French test, Students association presentation, etc. You will have the program at your arrival.

Discovering French as a foreign language : the ENS de Lyon's Foreign Language Center provides several language learning activities (workshops on French civilization, creative writing, drama, to improve your academic written and spoken French).
French as a foreign language


Administrative procedures

You can find a list of the documents required at your arrival on the right in "Documents".

For the residence permit, you will have an appointment with International Office.

Dispositions regarding long-stay visas

A special procedure applies since June 1, 2009 for foreigners with a long-stay visa (over 90 days and less than a year). If granted this visa serves as a residence permit.

More detailed information will be given by the French embassy when applying for a visa.

1- Before your departure: Etudiant visa and Etudiant-Stagiaire visa

  • Long-stay Visa (Visa D) mentioning étudiant
    It must be obtained prior to arrival, in order to pursue studies in France and to be eligible to apply for the residence permit or titre de séjour Étudiant on arrival.
  • Long-stay Visa mentioning étudiant stagiaire (for internships)
    It must be obtained prior to arrival, in order to pursue an internship at the ENS and to be eligible to apply for the residence permit or titre de séjour Étudiant Stagiaire on arrival.
  • Exemptions
    Students of the European Union and the following countries do not need a long-stay visa: Switzerland, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway, Andorra, Monaco,The Republic of San Marino, The Vatican City.

Application at the consulates or embassies of France in your home country at least 3 months before departure.

Please note : if you live in a country with this process open, you can apply directly online with France-Visas. More information on Campus France website

Documents required (subject to change - check with the French Embassy):

  • a valid passport
  • proof of residence in France for the duration of your stay (electricity bill, House deed)
  • proof of financial resources of at least about €615 per month
  • proof of enrollment at the ENS for the étudiant visa or the internship agreement for the étudiant stagiaire visa

2- On arrival: Long-stay visa which also serves as a residence permit

Promptly after your arrival in France, and within 3 months of your arrivalyou must validate your  VLS-TS.

This has to be directly online :

This platform allows you to buy the virtual fiscal stamp.

At the end of the formalities, you will receive confirmation emails. By connecting to your account, you will be able to download your confirmation document. 

Please note: This agreement does not apply to students of Algerian nationality. They are required to obtain a residence card.

More information: Ministery of Foreign and European Affairs

Once you are accepted, you will receive an email with the access to an online application form for accommodation (student residences on campus).

  • If your request is accepted, you will receive an answer early July at the latest.
  • If your request isn't accepted, you will have to search an accomodation on your own.

More information: Accomodation

  • If you are an EU student, you must obtain the European Health Insurance Card from your Social Security office or provide detailed proof of private health insurance coverage (translated into French or English) and valid for the duration of your stay in France.
  • If you are a non-EU student, you will need to obtain health insurance coverage when you are enrolling at the ENS (free, but COMPULSORY).