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Entrance examination

Applicants to the Ingenieur Polytechnicien Program need to take the entrance examinations.

Useful information

  • The examinations can be taken in either French or English.
  • International centers set up around the world for the Autumn Session and in France and Senegal (non-exhaustive list) for the Spring Session.

Key steps

  • A check for eligibility: an initial selection based on academic records, motivation letter and letters of recommendation. More on "how to apply"
  • The admissions exams: a second selection based on results of written and oral exams in maths, physics and a general scientific knowledge.
  • Final notification by the admissions jury
    The aim of this three-step selection process is to rank by order of merit the candidates who are qualified to benefit from an education at Ecole Polytechnique.


  • Eligibility
    The eligibility committee selects a list of candidates based on the number of places available and the results of the evaluation of application materials.Academic records, motivation letter and letters of recommendation are all considered in determining the eligibility of a candidate prior to examination.
  • Admissions exams
    The exams may be taken either in France or abroad, depending on the candidate's country of residency.

    The exams consist of 5 mandatory tests:
    1. Two  written exams in Mathematics and Physics (2 hours each)
    2. An oral examination in Mathematics (55 min)
    3. An oral examination in Physics (55 min)
    4. An oral examination in General Scientific Knowledge (45 min) : an interview focusing on the analysis of scientific documents (30 min) and the candidate's motiviation (15 min). The oral examination in General Scientific Knowledge is the only examination preceded by a 30-min preparation period.
    Examinations can be conducted in French or in English.

An average ranking is established for each candidate having undergone all the tests given the following coefficients assigned to each examination:
For written exams :
- 3 in Mathematics
- 2 in Physics
For oral exams :
- 6 in Mathematics
- 4 in Physics
- 2 in General Scientific Knowledge and motivation


  • Admission
    The admissions jury determines the list of admitted candidates. Admission criteria include both the quality of the candidate's academic records and his/her results in the examinations.

    Admission to Ecole Polytechnique is confirmed after the students have met the following conditions:

    1) Prior to the students' arrival at Ecole Polytechnique:
    - checking that the candidate meets the physical fitness conditions set by the Ministry of Defense

    - verifying that the candidate is not in a situation that is incompatible with the student status of Ecole Polytechnique.

    2) When students have arrived at Ecole Polytechnique:
    at the latest, before the beginning of the advanced scientific curriculum, verification that the candidate meets the French language proficiency requirement