Students take the equivalent of four courses per semester that must equate to a full load of credits at Hamilton College. A full course in France carries 5-6 European Credit Transcript System (ECTS) or more (see credits below). Courses that carry fewer than 5 ECTS receive 1/2 credit. It may then be necessary for students to take more than four courses to earn the equivalent to their home institution full load. With permission of the director, students may over-elect by one course during one semester. Regular attendance at all classes is expected and counts in the final grade. Deadlines for dropping classes vary at different institutions and will be communicated to students at the start of the semester.
Examination periods vary according to Paris institutions but usually take place at the end of the first semester (late December to early January – before or after winter break) and in mid to late May (early to mid June at Paris 6). In addition, shorter examinations, papers and reports are scheduled during the year. The examinations are given either by the professor of the institutes and schools or by professors appointed by the director of the program.
Students are usually graded according to the French system, from 0 to 20. At the end of the academic year, grades are converted into letter grades equivalent to those used at Hamilton College. Members of Hamilton in France who are not Hamilton College students are registered at Hamilton College as special students, not as candidates for a Hamilton degree. They must, however, meet the academic standards of Hamilton College.
The number of credits recommended for each course depends on contact hours and the amount and nature of the work required. Hamilton follows the ECTS which standardizes course credits throughout the European university system. Hamilton adopts the ECTS used by Paris institutions to guarantee accuracy and fairness in credit recommendations. Some courses require a mandatory tutorial.
French majors and students intending to use French in their future careers are encouraged to earn one of the certificates offered by Parisian institutions. Additional information regarding which certificates will be available in Paris.