French Language for Health Sciences (Intermediate & Advanced) Online | Abroad

Develop French language skills for public health through online and classroom learning, as well as cultural immersion and experiential learning activities on the tropical island of Madagascar.

At a Glance


3 (+3)


3 semesters French, online component or equivalent to enroll in the J-Term

Language of Study


Language Levels

Intermediate, Advanced

Courses taught in



Jul 13 ‎– Jul 31

Online Term

Jul 13 ‎– Jul 31

In-Country J-Term (optional)

Dec 28 ‎– Jan 15

Program Base

Online, Antananarivo, Madagascar

Critical Global Issue of Study

Identity & Human Resilience

Identity & Human Resilience Icon

Global Health & Well-being

Global Health & Well-being Icon


This course offers three weeks of online study and three weeks abroad. The online course is open to all applicants with three semesters of college-level French (or equivalent). The in-person J-term is open to college undergraduates who have completed the online term or who provide proof of completion (or the equivalent) of three semesters of college-level French.

This program, aimed at students and professionals in health-related fields, offers resources for building French language skills for public health, with an emphasis on topics such as epidemiology, biostatistics, global health, and mental health, among others.

This program will be delivered through a three-credit online course and an optional three-credit immersion course in Antananarivo, Madagascar. The program will employ experiential learning opportunities and include lessons in grammar and vocabulary related to the program theme. Discussion sessions will provide opportunities to practice and develop French language skills for use in medical contexts and other practical healthcare scenarios.

Antananarivo, the economic capital of Madagascar, has the most advanced network of professionals in medical and public health services on the island. While in Tana, you will have opportunities to practice your French through interactions with medical and public health professionals. You will also visit urban and rural health care centers in Andasibe and the surrounding area. During an excursion to the rural area of Andasibe, you will examine intercultural healthcare systems for local community and learn about the challenges facing rural health care workers. In both Antananarivo and Andasibe, you will be living with a host family to advance your French outside of the classroom.


  • Enhance capacity in oral comprehension on themes related to public health.
  • Discover how Malagasy culture and healthcare issues are intertwined, and learn how to apply this to sustainable and effective public health policy solutions.
  • Practice French for public health by working alongside health workers and collecting data with study subjects in Madagascar. (J-Term)
  • Experience daily life with homestay families in Antananarivo and Andasibe. (J-Term)


3 semesters of college-level French, students are recommended to complete SIT's summer online component first, or have the equivalent of 3 semesters of college level French when starting the J-term program.

Program Terms

Online Term Details

During this three-week online course, you will be placed in a small class based on a written and oral proficiency evaluation. The course will feature 45 hours of online teaching including a program orientation, language instruction, seminar and discussions on health topics and alternative medicine from an indigenous perspective. This course aims to strengthen your fundamental French skills and improve your understanding of Madagascar public health. You will also have outside readings and assignments and built-in feedback sessions. During the online term, you will elaborate an individual mini-project in the topic of your interest for further field work during the in-country J-term.

In-Country (J-Term) Details

During this three-week course, you will complete the next level of French for Public Health. It will mainly focus on practical and field study. Individually, you will collect data according to your project. You will be grouped in a small class with placements based on a written and oral proficiency evaluation. Hone your speaking, reading, and writing skills through classroom activities, excursions, individual study, the homestay family experience, and lectures related to public health, with built-in feedback sessions included. Read professional health science literature and learn formal terms and local expressions needed to discuss health and healthcare issues.

Please note that SIT will make every effort to maintain its programs as described. To respond to emergent situations, however, SIT may have to change or cancel programs.



The following syllabi are representative of this program. Because courses develop and change over time to take advantage of dynamic learning opportunities, actual course content will vary from term to term.

Please expand the sections below to see detailed course information, including course codes, credits, overviews, and syllabi.

Program Components

  • Learn French for Public Health from experienced language instructors
  • 45 hours online with video lectures, audio recordings, and practice lessons
  • 45 hours of immersive language learning in Madagascar with health-focused talks and field study (J-Term)
  • Readings, assignments, and excursions (J-Term) to complement language learning
  • Live with Malagasy homestay families in Antananarivo and Andasibe and immerse yourself in the French language (J-Term)

French for Health Sciences (Online)

French for Health Sciences (In Country)

Faculty & Staff

Madagascar: French Language for Health Sciences (Intermediate & Advanced) Online | Abroad

Andolalao Rakotoarison, PhD
Rindrahatsarana Ramanankirahaina
Alida Hasiniaina

Discover the Possibilities


    The total cost for this program is $960, while the optional in-country term is $2,919, including tuition, room & board, health insurance, and more. Financial aid may apply. Contact your study abroad office or SIT Admissions for more information.