ABOUT France and its overseas possessions are divided into 35 educational districts, or academies, each of which is responsible for all levels of education. France remains a leader in world affairs even though it lost its status as a dominant state after World War II. While it has retained a number of territories, its colonial past is evident chiefly on its streets, in the form of ethnic diversity. France, which has long pushed for economic integration in Europe, now proposes to strengthen the military capabilities of the European Union. The government is also in the midst of reducing its influence over the domestic economy through privatization. The French cultural legacy is apparent throughout the world, from writers, thinkers, and painters to cuisine. France is the most visited country in the world.
France and its overseas possessions are divided into 35 educational districts, or academies, each of which is responsible for all levels of education. Spread throughout the districts is 91 universities, a classification that includes institutes of technology. Since 2002 the government has gradually put into effect the terms of the Bologna Process, even as universities have become more autonomous. The standard undergraduate degree is the three-year License (equivalent to a bachelor’s degree). Students may pursue a master’s degree on either a research track or a professional track. Both require two years of study. A research master’s is required for doctoral studies, which typically last three more years.