Division of French



Recognized as one of the leading French educational institutes in Thailand, the Division of French has had a renowned tradition in both teaching and public services in French since the foundation of Chiang Mai University in 1964.

The Division of French was established as a part of Chiang Mai University’s very first faculty, the Faculty of Humanities, with the cordial assistance and support from the French Government.  

In 1972 – 1984, Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani Vadhana Krom Luang Naradhiwas Rajanagarindra, the revered pillar of French education in Thailand, graciously dedicated five days per year in teaching junior and senior students at the division. Furthermore, Her Royal Highness initiated a scholarship scheme using her pay and continuously patronized the scheme until 2008, when the patronage was taken over by her daughter, Thanpuying Dhasanawalaya Sornsongkram. A total of 55 senior students with highest scores of the class have received this scholarship so far.   


    As the Division of French has put a strong emphasis on learning not only the French language but also the French thoughts, minds and lifestyle, this four-year program is therefore designed to develop students’ skills and expertise in communicative French together with sound knowledge and understanding of the French and Francophone worlds. Areas of study include language & culture, linguistics, literature from the early modern to the contemporary, social & historical analysis of thoughts & philosophy, and French for specific purposes.

  • Combination of language skills, cultural and social literacy and critical thinking makes our graduates truly versatile, sophisticated and employable.
  • Recognized as one of the leading French departments in Thailand; highly knowledgeable & adept teaching staff whose approaches to French language, literature, cultural, and historical studies are at the forefront of the field.
  • Ample opportunity for students to participate in extra-curricular activities, French language training, academic competitions, scholarship & exchange programs, interns & apprenticeship, and many more. 


This program allows students to study core courses in the French language skills, literature, culture, history, and society and then progress to their particular areas of interest plus a minor in a field of their choices to prepare themselves for the career world. 
Over the course of four years, students are required to complete at least 143 credits. In each of the eight semesters, they will take about six individual courses, normally valued at 3.0 or 2.0 credits each, adding up to 18.0 credits for the semester.
     In the first year, students are exposed to various foundation courses that strengthen their ability to speak, listen, read and write in French as well as develop their mastery in the grammatical and stylistic aspects of the language.  Students are also required to take courses in the Arts, such as communicative English, the Sciences & mathematics and Social Sciences to encourage versatility.
    In the second year, in addition to a more concentrated study in the French language through linguistics, literature and other communicative courses, interdisciplinary courses such as French Life and Civilization and History of Western Ideas introduce students to various aspects of French studies. They also take some courses in other subjects, such as English for Humanities and Mass Communication, and electives of their choice. Students also start their minor courses at this level. 
      In the third year, students further develop their French skills to a higher level and start to define their interest by choosing courses under diverse subject areas, namely skills & linguistics, literature, and cultural & social literacy. 
     In the fourth year, more advanced core courses equip students with the ability to speak French fluently, write analytically in accurate French, and analyze texts and contexts efficiently. Depending on their pathway, students also choose from a range of advanced optional courses from the aforementioned subject areas as well as courses in the Translation field and the all-time popular French for Specific Purposes field, namely French for Tourism, French for Correspondence and Secretarial Work and French for Business.


Graduates of the French Division go on to achieve success in a wide range of professions including education, international organization, government & civil service, diplomacy, tourism & hospitality industry, journalism & the media, public relations, translation & interpreting, and many more.
Career destinations include:

  • Science and Higher Education Cooperation Officer, the French Embassy, Bangkok
  • Manager, Ta Production Co.,Ltd , a French film production company
  • Financial Controller, Michelin ROH Co., Ltd
  • Officers at the Immigration Department
  • Flight attendants at various airlines
  • Teachers & researchers
  • Tour guides

The Faculty of Humanities is one of three faculties established when Chiang Mai University was founded in 1964. The other two faculties are the Faculty of Sciences and the Faculty of Social Sciences. The three faculties offer three groups of foundation courses: natural sciences, social science and humanities as educators at that time believed it would result in a perfect graduate who is equipped with basic knowledge related to things of nature, human society and the mind as well as other qualities of mankind. In the first year of the establishment in 1964, the Faculty of Humanities had 20 full-time academic staff and 2 part-time instructors, 3 administrative staff and 77 students while offering 282 courses.

CMU Link