The University of Montpellier was established in 1289 when Pope Nicholas IV ordered the Montpellier schools to merge and form one university.
Following the French Revolution in 1793, the university ceased academic activity for a short time and schools within the university were gradually reinstated over the following decades.
The University of Montpellier has changed significantly in recent history – following the civil unrest in France in May 1968 that saw mass demonstrations and strikes across the country, the university was reorganised and split into three separate institutions. From 1970, the university was divided into the University of Montpellier 1, which housed the former departments of medicine, law and economics, the University of Montpellier 2, which housed the departments of science and technology, and the Paul Valery University of Montpellier 3, which was home to the social sciences, humanities and liberal arts faculties.
In 2015 the University of Montpellier 1 and the University of Montpellier 2 merged after 45 years of separation, forming today’s University of Montpellier. The Paul Valery University of Montpellier 3, now known as the Paul Valery University in homage to the French writer who studied in Montpellier, remains a separate institution.
Today, the University of Montpellier is made up of the following nine faculties: Economic and Social Administration, Pharmacy, Science, Economics, Law and Political Science, Dentistry, Sports, Medicine, and Education. There are also three Institutes of Technology, three institutes in the fields in administration and business and two specialized schools: Polytech Montpellier Engineering School and OREME, which is a research observatory.
It is France’s sixth largest university.