More about Paris-Sorbonne University – Paris 4

The Paris-Sorbonne University – Paris IV is one of the most prestigious institutions for teaching arts, languages and humanities in France or indeed the world.

The university, known as Paris IV has a long and politically-charged history dating back to medieval times. The original Collège de Sorbonne was founded in 1257 as part of the (even older) University of Paris. During the 1500s the university became a centre of Catholic conservatism and the Sorbonne was later supressed during the French Revolution before being re-opened again by Napoleon in the early 1800s. More recently the Sorbonne was the setting for some of the most turbulent actions in the May 1968 student uprisings which swept across France. In 1970 the University of Paris was divided into thirteen separate institutions, The Paris-Sorbonne University – Paris IV inhabits the original Sorbonne building along with two other universities created during this time.

Paris IV also occupies campuses in 12 sites across Paris and has six libraries in the city. The Sorbonne Library (formerly the University of Paris library) contains 2.5m books and is shared by several universities. The university offers tailored tutoring to students from overseas who do not have French as a first language.

Paris IV inherited the schools of Human Sciences, Classical Languages, Modern Languages and the Arts from the original University of Paris. The university is also home to the prestigious school of communication (CELSA) and ESPE school of education. It has constantly ranked highly for teaching in these fields in the global rankings since its creation in 1970.

Famous alumni include Paul Biya, president of Cameroon and writer Carlos Alvarado-Larroucaua.

Key statistics

  • 21,488
    Number of Students
  • 27.9
    Student to Staff Ratio
  • 19%
    Percentage of International Students
  • 70 : 30
    Student Ratio of Females to Males
Collected during World University Rankings on 28th Sep 2016

Where we are


1 Rue Victor Cousin
75005 Paris