Restrictions to Online Education in France

by Alex Hales
Online Education

Earlier this week, the Education Ministry announced that the state-run distance-learning network had suffered cyberattacks. While some problems have been solved, other regions are still experiencing erratic connections. Founder of a leading online teaching platform, Open Digital Education, Esther Baumad says the problem was caused by too many people trying to connect at once. It’s unclear whether this is a one-time problem or a trend that could persist for a long time.


Considering studying in France? Here are some cost-cutting tips: if you want to study abroad, start by researching the cost of living in France. Living in France costs EUR615 per month – which is about EUR7,318 annually. It’s also worth knowing that living expenses in major cities like Paris are more expensive. Budgeting for accommodation and food should be a major priority while studying in France.

Generally, the cost of studying in France is much lower than in many other countries. Public universities and colleges in France charge about EUR170 per year for a bachelor’s degree, while private universities charge around EUR380 for a PhD. Non-EU students pay more, but not by much. Despite the lower price of studying in France, the average public university also charges administration fees, which are not particularly high. International students choose public institutions because they’re more affordable.


Restrictions to online education in France are real. Statistics show that fifty thousand students have disengaged from online learning, representing approximately 3% of the total French university student population. Moreover, eighty percent of the University of Paris’ students do not have cameras or microphones on their computers. To address this issue, the French government has updated its operating framework for health protocols, based on three scenario levels. Each scenario level describes the minimum health protocols, and these guidelines may be updated at any time.

In France, the OECD reported that 70% of parents believed that school closure activities helped children learn. But it is unclear how many students actually benefited. The OECD did not collect data on how many students received subsidised devices. Nevertheless, it is believed that this change would improve access to education for more children. However, it is uncertain if the French government will make any further adjustments to help parents overcome these restrictions.


French higher education institutions are promoting the use of MOOCs to attract new students, but these programs are lacking in several aspects: long-term personalized learning, training strategies, and accreditation forms. In addition, Henri (2017) argues that countries cannot apply pedagogical engineering to MOOCs because of their limited national business models and lack of a national business model. The same holds true for the development of an appropriate learning recognition framework.

This study drew upon interviews conducted by Human Rights Watch and based on the findings of 177 participants, including children, teachers, and non-governmental organizations. It is important to remember that “teacher” covers a wide spectrum of roles in the education system. While the Human Rights Watch report identifies some commonalities among different countries, it does not make broad generalizations. However, it highlights a few key trends.

Lessons for other countries

For those who have a little more time, you can also take French lessons online from Alliance Francaise (AF) chapters. These online lessons are taught by French teachers and they compete for your attention by giving you a digital test and a homework assignment every day. The AF, which started in Paris in 1883, supports the study of the French language and the culture of francophone countries around the world. As of this writing, it has 834 chapters in 133 countries.

The French Experiment website offers free lessons with a wide variety of topics, such as pronunciation and cultural history. They also include explanations of dialogues and grammatical structures. Lessons are available for all levels, and there are audios to help you with pronunciation. All of these lessons are free, and most of them come with quizzes and assignments. If you’re a beginner, the lessons will teach you the basics of French pronunciation.

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