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University of Poitiers

The University of Poitiers, founded in 1431 by Pope Eugene IV, later confirmed by French King Charles VII’s letters patent, was originally composed of five Colleges: technology, canon law, civil law, medicine and arts.

From the 16th century, the University of Poitiers shines on the cultural life of the city. At that time, it was cited as the second university in France, after Paris; 4,000 students attended the university, some of whom would become famous: Joachim du Bellay, Guez de Balzac, François Rabelais, René Descartes, Francis Bacon, Scévole de Sainte Marthe … The basis of the teaching is made up of “readings” and comments supplemented by the organization of “disputes” where, for a given topic, arguments and objections are presented and ended with a summary. The degrees are the baccalaureate, the license, the doctorate.

After the Revolution, which abolished the provincial universities, the University of Poitiers is reborn and enriched with new faculties: letters, sciences …

Key figures

  • more than 28,000 students
  • including more than 4,000 international students
  • more than 3,000 staff
  • 14 faculties, institutes and schools
  • 1,000 teachers-researchers
  • more than 1,100 doctoral students
  • 37 laboratories
  • 8 doctoral schools
  • more than 200 national diplomas
  • 180 theses defended each year
  • 500 partner establishments around the world
  • 1,600 professional speakers

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