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  • Locations: Fort-de-France, Martinique
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: Academic Programs Abroad (APA) 
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Language of Instruction: French Click here for a definition of this term Class Status: 2-sophomore, 3-junior, 4-senior, 5-grad student
Housing Options: Homestay Click here for a definition of this term Areas of Study: Anthropology, Biology, Botany, Caribbean Studies, Culture, Ecology, Environmental Studies, French, Gender Studies, Geography, Global Studies, History, Independent Study, Interdisciplinary Design, International Relations, International Studies, Liberal Arts, Literature, Peace & Conflict Studies, Peace Studies, Political Science, Sociology, Women's Studies, Womens Studies
Program Type: Study Abroad Minimum GPA: 3
Click here for a definition of this term Program: Direct
Program Description:


For six weeks, the island of flowers, Martinique, provides a unique backdrop for engaging with issues surrounding the slave trade, colonization, race, exceptional biological diversity and environmental fragility. This rich literary and cultural powerhouse has inspired intellectual movements across the US, Europe and Western Africa for centuries. Join resident experts in their fields as they guide the exploration of these topics in and out of the classroom.

At a Glance
All Majors Language of Instruction: French Term: Summer (6 weeks)
Eligibility: 3.0 GPA Sophomore standing & above 3+ semesters of college French or equivalent (B1 starting level)

The program includes:

  • Tuition fees for two courses
  • Dedicated academic and language support
  • Week-long orientation with important preparation and cultural activities such as a kayak tour of the mangroves
  • Culture package: weekly cultural events and activities; excursions, conversational Antillean Creole classes
  • Housing: Stay with a hand-selected host family with daily breakfast and dinner, and laundry included in board


  • 2 week extension: Stay in Martinique an additional two weeks and use your time to pursue an independent study related to a course.

Students also receive:

  • Airport pick-up on the program start date
  • Pre-departure support
  • Liability insurance
  • Dedicated 24/7 on-site team for support in and outside of the classroom

Please visit for up-to-date program fees. APA awards two scholarships starting at $300 to participating students. Visit the Scholarship page for more information.


French Antilles map

In the heart of the Caribbean archipelago, Martinique is an overseas territorial region of France, and a part of the Lesser Antilles or, Windward Islands. About the same size as New York City, stunning beaches face the Caribbean Sea to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east while the interior is mountainous with volcanoes in the north.

Just under 400,000 inhabitants make up a multi-cultural society. As the official language, French is spoken everywhere but one also hears most Martinicans speak Creole, a mixture of old French, English, African dialects and some indigenous Carib terms.

About APA

APA is a boutique program provider in Paris, France with a passion to provide a first-rate study abroad experience that unites academic excellence with the beauty and richness of French and Francophone culture. For over 30 years, students from more than 80 US colleges and universities have received a personalized, immersive education abroad in Paris, France; Montpellier, France; Dakar, Senegal; and Rabat, Morocco.

French Antilles landscape

APA will prepare you for your stay in Martinique with a week-long orientation. Held in the former capital city of St. Pierre at the Union national des Centres Sportifs de Plein Air (UCPA - a French organization with locations around the world, designed to encourage collective participation in center life as well as cultural and outdoor activities), spend this time getting to know your new home for the summer and your cohort. This will include:

  • Preparation and guidance: exploring cultural differences and preparing for homestays
  • Health and safety overview
  • Finding your way: Learn about buses and public transportation
  • Language assessment and strategy for support and improvement
  • Cultural activities:
    • Kayak tour of the mangroves
    • Initiation in navigating the traditional yole fishing boat
    • Explore the Couleuvre Waterfall and the Caravelle Peninsula: swim and hike in the rainforest
    • Introduction to scuba diving

Enroll in two courses from the following:

  • Biodiversity and Medicinal Plants of the Caribbean: Lush jungle surrounded by crystal clear water, Martinique provides a sumptuous setting teeming with wildlife both on land and in the sea. Discover this rich biodiversity first hand and learn to identify flora and fauna that have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries.
  • (En)Gender the Caribbean: Francophone Women Writers: Explore and analyze excerpts of emblematic French Caribbean literature addressing the questions of identity, alterity, loss and memory. Using multiple narrative strategies, the writers tell how the mongrelized, illegitimate, rootless peoples of the Caribbean emerged from slavery, indentureship and colonial rule, to find their own voice.
  • Immigration, Slavery and Cultural Blending of the French Antilles in the Modern Era: Under the Code Noir of 1685 that brought the African slave workforce to the islands, the “Sugarcane Habitation” plantation system altered its settlement in successive waves. A power shift and diverse cultural, racial blending arose with subsequent servants from Mascarene, Bengal, and beyond. Investigate the impact of this revolution: challenging the “settlers”, the “free people of color” on the rise, and the slave population.
  • Introduction to the Native Antillean Population: An Anthropological, Archaeological and Historical Approach: Through an interdisciplinary lens, lectures and group discussions follow the course of native Antillean populations from 1492 to the Amerindian-descendant residents of modern day. Field trips to museums and archaeological sites offer a large diachronic panorama from the arrival of human beings in the insular Caribbean to the contemporary period.
  • Understanding the Environmental Context of French Departments in the Americas: The Example of Martinique: Decipher the government’s operating procedures, appraise the founding concepts of mitigation, and identify the various hazards that affect the West Indies. Equipped with these basic tools to become active stakeholders for sustainable development, students will examine the continued vulnerability of the French island of Martinique.

All courses are taught in French and receive four credits. Access the syllabi on our website.

Extend Your Stay

Continue your study abroad in Martinique and extend your stay two more weeks. The additional time allows you to take a deeper dive into a topic covered in a course by pursuing an independent study. Extension fees include independent study coordination with a faculty member and homestay room and meals.

Customized Language Support

During pre-departure, each student takes a language evaluation and based on the results, is assigned to one of our French language professors. Each week throughout the program, students will meet with their French professor for 30 minutes and one hour separately with a teaching assistant to work on specific areas of oral and written expression and comprehension.

Statue Experience the Martinican lifestyle, the beauty of the island, and richness of its history with curated cultural activities.


  • Kayak tour of the mangroves
  • Initiation in navigating the traditional yole fishing boat
  • Explore the Couleuvre Waterfall and the Caravelle Peninsula: swim and hike in the rainforest
  • Introduction to scuba diving

Cultural Events

Throughout the program, essential Martinican experiences are organized:

  • Concerts by local musicians
  • Theater, dance
  • Beginner Antillean Creole conversation classes
  • Traditional weaving and braiding workshop
  • Cooking class to master an Antillean recipe


  • Fort de France: Walking tour of the department capital
  • North Island: The ruins of Saint Pierre, the route de la Trace, Balata, tropical forests, waterfalls and black sand beaches
  • South Island: Cultural and historic explorations of Habitation Clement, Diamond Rock, Anses d'Arlet, and Cap 110 Memorial
  • French island of Guadeloupe: Tour of Point-à-Pitre and visit of the renowned Memorial ACTe

An exceptional experience, living in a Martinican homestay provides a greater understanding of cross-cultural learning and immersion. After spending the first week with APA at UCPA, students will be introduced to their host family.

Carefully matched, each student is paired with a host family. Students are provided with a private bedroom with linens, access to common areas including the kitchen, daily breakfast and dinner, and weekly laundry. All homestays are vetted to provide the best fit.


The program is open to students with sophomore, junior, senior, or graduate level class standing and a minimum 3.0 GPA. At least a B1 language level (approximately 3 semesters of college-level French or equivalent) will be necessary to follow courses taught in French.


February 15

Application Process

Just as you are excited about studying abroad, we are as eager to welcome you to the French Antilles! Our application process is designed so that we can learn the most about you as a person: your academics, future plans, interests and hobbies, and even your picture so we can put a face to your name.

The online application consists of submitting the following parts:

  • Background information and personal statement
  • Unofficial transcript
  • French recommendation letter
  • $35 application fee (waived for students on full financial aid or from APA institutional partners)

Your application will only be reviewed once these pieces are received. After, a member of the APA team will contact you to schedule a short, friendly telephone conversation in English and French so that we may learn more about you and why you would like to study in the French Antilles.

Apply online at the APA website

Please note: Your home institution may have its own study abroad application requirements and deadlines. It is your responsibility to make sure they are all completed in the proper, timely manner.


If you have any questions, we welcome you to contact the APA US office at or by phone at 203-883-8200. A team member will respond to you as soon as possible.