International PhD students

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Whether you want to start a Doctorate degree at the University of Bordeaux, set up a co-supervised thesis, carry out a research residency or attend a summer school session… there are plenty of opportunities at the University of Bordeaux.

Photo : Doctoral student graduation ceremony © Gautier Dufau
Doctoral student graduation ceremony © Gautier Dufau

First steps towards a PhD

To start a PhD at the University of Bordeaux, you must meet certain prerequisites and consult the admission criteria of the Graduate Research School.

Before taking any steps, you should identify which doctoral school corresponds to your speciality and research project. Then you should contact a potential thesis director, from a research unit affiliated with the graduate school, who would be willing to supervise you.

Several international options

If you are interested in an international perspective, explore 3 of our options for supervising and enhancing an international trajectory. These partnerships with major universities around the world are making it possible to train a new generation of researchers and offer more prospects for joint projects.

Co-supervised Doctorate (double degree)

The co-supervised, double degree (sometimes called "cotutelle") is an option that facilitates the joint organisation and supervision of a Doctorate, by a French university and a foreign university institution, with the aim of earning a double degree.

International co-directorship

The doctoral student is enrolled at the University of Bordeaux with 2 thesis directors - one from the University of Bordeaux and the other from a foreign university - who share the scientific supervision of the doctoral student's research work.

European Doctorate label

The European Doctorate label is a means of certifying the European and international scope of the Doctorate.

Learn more about completing a PhD

The Graduate Research School coordinates the entire field of doctoral studies and provides support to the university's 2,000 doctoral students to foster the best possible conditions for pursuing a career, nationally and internationally: enrolment and thesis defence, training and professionalisation, international programmes, scientific outreach, promotion and development, etc.

Check out all the information on the Graduate Research School website


Funding can be allocated via the Graduate Research School, through a partnership with another organisation or from a call for projects, for example.

Apply for funding


  • Manon Dumas

    Project Officer for International PhD Programmes

    +33 (0)5 40 00 24 65

International programmes

China Scholarship Council 

The China Scholarship Council is a non-profit organisation affiliated with the Chinese Ministry of Education. Its aim is to provide financial aid to Chinese citizens who wish to pursue their PhD abroad. Since 2013, the University of Bordeaux has coordinated a call for applications to welcome excellent Chinese students working on their Doctorate degree at the University of Bordeaux for a 36- or 48-month period.


The University of Bordeaux has a partnership agreement with the prestigious Franco-American Fulbright Commission to promote the mobility of doctoral students between France and the USA.


The Doctorate section of the Eiffel programme provides support to very high-level foreign applicants seeking to spend 12 months on mobility in France, within the framework of an international co-directorship or co-supervised Doctorate.

  • Bordeaux Summer Schools

    From May to September, the Bordeaux campus hosts several international summer schools, covering a broad range of subjects and open to a wide audience.

Research stay

If you would like to come to the University of Bordeaux for a temporary research stay, you should get directly in contact with a lecturer-researcher or research unit in your speciality to determine the feasibility of a mobility project regarding your thesis topic.

Step 1: initial request

First, you must contact a research unit in your speciality. The unit will determine the feasibility of a mobility project regarding your thesis topic.

Step 2: application acceptance

The director of the research unit validates the principle of your temporary stay by drafting a letter of invitation, which may be used to secure funding for your stay by your home university, or by a regional/governmental entity in your country.

Depending on the unit chosen, an agreement from the Defence Security Officer (Fonctionnaire Sécurité Défense) may also be requested.

Step 3: planning your research stay

You will then need to decide, together with the scientific manager who will supervise you during your stay in France, on the dates, objective, terms and condition of your stay.

Step 4: drafting your work contract

The scientific manager will contact the Businesses, partnerships and innovation department (See "Contact") to draw up a temporary hosting contract, which should be made official and signed between the University of Bordeaux and your home university. These procedures must be completed before you arrive in France.

Step 5: administrative procedures

If a visa is required based on your country of origin, you will need to contact the Welcome Centre for International Researchers, which can also assist you in finding accommodation.


  • Claire Rey

    Research Contracts Office

    +33 (0)5 40 00 25 67

  • Welcome Centre for International Researchers

    + 33 (0)5 40 00 68 73

Plan ahead

Entry, procedures, accommodation... Consult all the practical information to prepare for your stay in France.

Welcome to Bordeaux

Welcome Guide for International Researchers

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