Dates: 24 June – 3 August 2018
Credits: 6 US (30 UK)
Level: US 2nd/3rd year (5 UK) 
Prerequisites: None
Fees: £5,560 (early bird fee, including 10% academic fee discount) / £5,880 (full fee)
Academic leadDr Olivia Sheringham
For enquiries, contact:

Course overview

In the nineteenth century London and Paris became the first modern cities to have more than a million inhabitants. The density and diversity of their populations, the dynamism of their economies, and their extraordinary social, cultural and governmental institutions established them as key nodes in an increasingly interconnected world. Today we live in an age of cities, yet London and Paris retain their place as global leaders in international business and finance, arts and culture, scientific and academic research, tourism and education.

This intensive six-week programme - which is part of the QMUL Summer School - provides students with a creative intellectual immersion into the heart of London and Paris. It uses each city as a classroom and laboratory for investigating a range of continuities and changes, problems and potentials across the urban fabric. It introduces students to key concepts and intellectual debates connected to urban inequality and economic growth, globalization, post-colonialism, urban politics and cultures of public space. The programme curriculum is rooted in the social sciences and will be relevant to those studying sociology, economics, history, geography, political science, community studies, global studies and urban studies. It will also appeal to those in the arts and humanities, communications and business, and anyone interested in the dynamics of urbanization.

The course has been developed by the world-leading research and teaching expertise of Queen Mary University of London and the University of London Institute in Paris. Led by academic staff from both universities, it draws upon the unique local knowledge and insights of academic researchers working in collaboration with institutions, community groups and organizations across both cities. The course is supported by ACCENT International, a leading provider of study abroad programmes across the world.

Click here to visit QMUL's website.

Course aims

The Global Cities Summer School aims to: 

  • provide critical understanding of London and Paris as global cities, introducing students to a range of interdisciplinary scholarship on urban life in general, and in London and Paris in particular
  • develop understanding of theoretical perspectives on cities, particularly in relation to questions of social inequality; the political economy of urban change; imperialism, post-colonialism and the built environment; and culture, power and identity
  • enable investigation of a range of issues and themes central to understanding London and Paris and their global characters including: the changing economic role of global cities; inequality and social polarization; neighborhood change and gentrification; the interplay between metropolitan culture and colonial spaces; diversity, difference and urban culture
  • offer opportunities to undertake urban fieldwork, observation and community engagement
  • provide deeper understanding of, and opportunities for critical engagement with, the cities within which students are studying.

For more detailed information, please visit QMUL's website.

Further study

QMUL and ULIP offer excellent masters programmes, such as the Cities and Cultures MA, London Studies MA, and Urban History and Culture MA. Students who complete the summer school programme will be eligible for the Queen Mary Alumni Loyalty Award (£1,000 reduction of your postgraduate degree tuition fees).*

*You will need to check with your home institution to confirm credit equivalents and transfer details. 

Teaching and learning

Students participating in this programme will develop a sound understanding of the nature and significance of London and Paris as global cities, drawing from academic argument and debate, observational and participatory field work and their own research and investigation.

A range of skills and capacities will developed across the six weeks of the programme. The main learning outcomes are as follows:

  • students will understand the way that global processes shape the cities of Paris and London
  • through the prism of Paris students will gain a critical understanding of core scholarly debates about colonisation, decolonisation and urban change
  • through the prism of London, students will gain a critical understanding of core scholarly debates about globalization and urban change, inequality and and social polarization, and urban culture, identity and difference
  • students will be able to decipher historical and political processes through the built environment of the city
  • students will develop understanding of core geographical concepts such as place, space and scale.

Students will learn about global London and Paris in a variety of different ways including via lectures, seminars and workshops (using the facilities at Queen Mary University of London and the University of London Institute in Paris), field walks, visits to neighborhoods, museums, galleries and other institutions, and meeting with experts and community organizations. Reading, research, investigation and independent study will complement these activities.  The course will have its own dedicated supporting website on QMplus (Queen Mary’s Virtual Learning Environment).

Visit QMUL's website.

Entry requirements

To join our Summer School, you should have completed a minimum of two semesters’ study at your home institution.

We welcome Summer School students from around the world. We accept a range of qualifications:

  • if your home institution uses the four-point Grade Point Average (GPA) scale, we usually require a 3.0 GPA
  • if your home institution uses the letter scale, you will need to have a B+

We welcome international qualifications and we consider every application individually on its academic merit.

English language requirements

All of our courses are taught and assessed in English. If English isn’t your first language, you must meet one of the following English Language requirements in order to join the QMUL Summer School:

  • If you hold a degree from a majority English speaking country plus Canada you may use this degree to satisfy the English language requirements for entry, provided the degree was completed no more than 5 years before the start date of the course to which you are applying.
  • IELTS, 7 overall or higher
  • TOEFL Internet Based Test we require a minimum of 100 (L22; S25; R24; W27)
  • PTE Academic 68
  • Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English 185 70- grade C (old marking system)
  • Applicants with an alternative qualification should check it is equivalent to the above or contact us at

Visit QMUL's website.


The cost of the Global Cities: Paris and London Summer School is:

  • £5,880 (full fee)  
  • £5,560 (early bird fee, including 10% academic fee discount)

We are offering a 10% early bird discount off academic fees for those who apply before 28 February 2018. From 28 February onwards we will offer a 10% academic fee discount to: 

  • students and staff from partner institutions
  • alumni
  • current QMUL students 

The cost will include: 

  • accommodation in Paris and London (Paris: shared apartment, meals not included / London: student residence halls, breakfast included)
  • ULIP/QMUL academic fees
  • QMUL transcript
  • welcome and farewell meals
  • public transport passes in Paris and London
  • Eurostar train transfer from Paris to London
  • orientation, city walking tour, evening performance in each city
  • one day-trip in each city
  • ACCENT cultural activities in each city

Please note: airfare and daily expenses are not included in the price.

Details on how to make payments will be sent to applicants once they have been accepted on the course. 

Visit QMUL's web page.

Travel and accommodation

Arrival in Paris

  • Students are responsible for their own travel to Paris. More detailed information on travel and other logistics will be provided in due course.
  • Arrival is at the ACCENT Paris Study Center (address: 89, Rue du Faubourg Saint Antoine, 75011 Paris, France) between 9am and 5pm on Sunday 24 June 2018.
  • Participants who are unable to check in during the designated hours may be required to make and pay for their own accommodation on the first night.
  • Students in Paris will be placed in privately-owned apartments, sharing with 3-5 other students who are also on the programme, in double or triple rooms with twin beds, desk and armoire, towels and bed linen.
  • Each apartment has a fully-fitted kitchen and common space, and a washing machine, iron and ironing board are provided. All apartments also have high-speed internet access. 
  • Apartments are chosen for their safety and ease of access to public transport. Upon arrival, students will receive a set of keys, a map of the neighbourhood, travel instructions, and a list of resources in the area. 

Transfer to London

  • Travel by Eurostar train from Paris to London is included in the course fee, and will be organised by the programme. This will take place on Sunday, 15 July 2018.
  • Accommodation in London will be at the QMUL Student Halls on the Mile End campus.

Departing London

  • The programme finishes at 5pm on Friday, 3 August 2018.
  • Students must check out of their accommodation by 11am on Saturday, 4 August 2018.

Visit QMUL's web page.

How to apply

All applications must be made through Queen Mary University of London. Please visit QMUL's 'How to apply' web page to find out more information and to access the application form.

Enquiries can be directed to Dr Olivia Sheringham, International Study Officer in the School of Geography at QMUL.