Interested in pursuing an American degree in France? Learn about options through IAU's degree-granting institution - The American College of the Mediterranean.

Bachelor's and Master's Programs

Accreditation, Distinctions, & Affiliations

Accreditation Statement

Since enrolling its first class in 1957, IAU has served as a center for education abroad for U.S. undergraduates. It is a not-for-profit institution of higher education and issues its own transcripts. IAU has worked with over 700 U.S. public and private colleges and universities, most of whom are familiar with the high standards of IAU programs and accept direct transfer of academic credit. A number of these institutions have signed direct affiliation agreements which allows for the 
direct transfer of academic credit. In instances when the home institution will not directly accept IAU credit, students may request to be transcripted through Fairfield University, IAU's school of record. Fairfield University is accredited through the New England Commission on Higher Education. Depending on the student's home university policy, IAU can provide a U.S. transcript for all articulated courses from Fairfield University upon request and if the request is made no later than 60 days prior to the program start date. For a list of articulated courses for School of Record transcript purposes, please contact Students wishing to receive a transcript through Fairfield must communicate this with IAU’s Office of Admissions prior to enrollment at IAU (at least 60 days prior to the program start date), as there is a process students must complete with both Fairfield and IAU. This process must be completed before the student's program begins and cannot be done retroactively.


  • ACM-IAU is recognized as an institution of higher learning by the French Ministry of Higher Education and Research, the French Ministry of the Interior, and the Rectorat of Aix-Marseille University.
  • ACM-IAU, as a foreign host site for the College Consortium of International Studies, is subject to regular program review.
  • IAU was originally chartered as an institution of higher education by the Regents of the State University of New York.

Founders & Notable People

In 1960, Albert Camus visited a class taught by his former philosophy professor Léon Wencelius, a class that took place at the Institute for American Universities (IAU) in Aix-en-Provence, France. The small group of American students only gradually came to know the identity of their renowned guest. The talk was such a success that Camus invited the class to a picnic at his home in Lourmarin two weeks hence. Just a few days later, on January 4, a tragic car accident in Sens ended those plans, and the picnic never took place.

In memory of this experience and IAU’s relationship with the renowned historic figure, IAU hosts a regular conference on Camus. Please click here for more information about the conference series.

  • Leo Marchutz began teaching at the Institute for American Universities in 1959 and went on to found the Marchutz School of Painting & Drawing in 1972 with William Weyman and Sam Bjokrlund
  • Philip Breeden, Diplomat and professor of international relations at IAU, became the inaugural Vice President of Administration for The American College of the Mediterranean
  • Frances Cook, IAU alumna, former IAU Trustee, and former U.S. Ambassador to Burundi, Cameroon, and Oman
  • William Granara, IAU Trustee, Gordon Gray Research Professor of Arabic, Former Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University, author, and visiting scholar
  • Aboubakr Jamaï, Moroccan journalist and professor of international relations at IAU
  • Max Kampelman, diplomat and former IAU Trustee
  • Jeane Kirkpatrick, former IAU Trustee and first woman to serve as the United States Ambassador to the United Nations
  • Kurt Volker, IAU Trustee, former U.S. Ambassador to NATO, and former U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations
  • Greg Wyatt, IAU Trustee and artist

Professional Affiliations

Since its inception in 1957, IAU has been at the forefront of study abroad opportunities for students and faculty. In an effort to stay up-to-date with the most current practices and offerings in international education, IAU has been actively involved in numerous professional organizations. Through active participation and attendance at regional, national and international conferences and fairs, IAU has been able to expand its program offerings and enhance its professional development and study abroad practices. Below is a list of organizations in which IAU is an active member. 

AAICU: The Association of American International Colleges and Universities

IAU is a founding member of the Association of American International Colleges and Universities (AAICU, 1971), a consortium of independent, non-for-profit, higher education institutions located outside the United States and based on the American liberal arts model. AAICU members adhere to the highest standards of institutional accountability and integrity. AAICU provides a distinctive forum for sharing best practices in international higher education, facilitates international and intercultural perspectives through student and faculty exchange, and promotes broader awareness of the educational, economic, social, and cultural contributions of member institutions to the regions of the world in which they are located. 

AIEA: The Association of International Education Administrators

The Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA), a membership organization formed in November 1982, is composed of institutional leaders engaged in advancing the international dimensions of higher education. The purposes of the Association are to provide an effective voice on significant issues within international education at all levels, to improve and promote international education programming and administration within institutions of higher education, to establish and maintain a professional network among international education institutional leaders, and to cooperate in appropriate ways with other national and international groups having similar interests.

APUAF: The Association of American University Programs in France

APUAF was established in 2008 and represents the interests, concerns, and vision of its roughly fifty institutional members throughout France. Its specific objectives include providing a forum and support network for directors and staff of U.S. programs in France, fostering collaboration by pooling resources and encouraging joint projects among members as well as with French partner institutions, facilitating administrative procedures through information-sharing and, if appropriate, lobbying on behalf of member institutions in France and the U.S. and representing members’ interests, viewpoints and general concerns through active participation in international organizations, conferences and committees focusing on study abroad issues.

APUNE: Asociación de Programas Universitarios Norteamericanos en España

The oldest association in Europe dedicated to the needs of American university programs abroad (founded 1968), APUNE (Association of American Programs in Spain) is a cultural, not-for-profit organization that seeks to strengthen the connection to Spain and its international education community.

CCIS: The College Consortium for International Studies

The College Consortium for International Studies, a partnership of colleges and universities -- two and four year, large and small, public and private, domestic and foreign -- encompasses the broad spectrum of international higher education. CCIS members sponsor a variety of programs, notably study abroad programs and professional development seminars for faculty and administrators, which are designed to enhance international/intercultural perspectives within the academic community.

Recognizing the value of such experiences in fostering global understanding and peaceful cooperation among nations in an increasingly interdependent and rapidly changing world, CCIS is committed to developing international dimensions as an integral part of collegiate education. CCIS works to build collaborative arrangements among institutions who share this commitment, and to facilitate linkages between member institutions and international partners. In all of its programs and activities, CCIS strives for a high level of academic excellence.

Forum on Education Abroad

IAU is a National Charter Member of the Forum on Education Abroad, the leading professional organization for U.S.-based education abroad. The Forum is recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission as a Standards Development Organization (SDO) for the field of education abroad.  Its annual conferences offer members the opportunity to hold sessions and discussions with colleagues on present-day issues in the field.

Maryland International Education Commission

IAU is a member of the Maryland International Education Commission (MIEC). The MIEC supports collaborative initiatives to recruit international students and visiting scholars and to develop globally competent students by offering learning abroad opportunities. MIEC cultivates a global learning network through its professional development programs for international educators.

NAFSA: Association of International Educators

IAU is also a committed member of NAFSA: Association of International Educators, which provides studies and research on study abroad practices, policy advocacy, and professional development as well as networking opportunities with its worldwide membership. IAU staff has taken advantage of NAFSA resources and participated in both NAFSA Academy and annual regional and national conferences.