M1 MPRI at ENS Paris-Saclay


The first year of Master in Computer Science at ENS Paris-Saclay is known as both M1 Jacques Herbrand and MPRI M1. This year is dedicated to reinforcing the students' familiarity with core topics in computer science, but unlike the Bachelor, it is also the occasion for students to diversify and learn about exciting application areas of this core knowledge (for instance in bioinformatics, robotics, verification, or machine learning).


The objective of Master Jacques Herbrand at ENS Paris-Saclay is to train future researchers in computer science, mainly for academia but also for corporate environments. It offers an excellent preparation to MPRI M2 (also known as Master AFP) before starting a Ph.D. in computer science. Nevertheless, the students from ENS Paris-Saclay routinely tune their curriculum and choose a different specialty for their second year of Master.


The curriculum includes:

  • A choice of courses à la carte, mostly in the first semester. The courses can be chosen from the MPRI M1, but also from other Masters, and not necessarily all in computer science (see the validation conditions). Each student chooses their own curriculum, pending validation by the department.
  • A research internship abroad, in a corporate or academic institution, during the second semester. Every student is advised by a member of LMF for their search of a suitable internship. Internships are graded on the basis of a report and a public defence; the latter takes place during the first two weeks of the first semester.
  • Visits of research institutions, with every year two French institutions and one foreign. Those are whole-day visits where the students can interact with researchers working in a variety of areas of computer science through conferences and demonstrations.

Language Policy

The language policy of the courses from MPRI M1 at ENS Paris-Saclay is to teach in French by default, but in English if at least one attending student requests it. Note that this policy may not apply to courses from other institutions but validated as part of the curriculum.


There are two types of curricula, depending on the duration of the second semester internship:

  1. The usual curriculum includes a long internship:
    • a first semester of courses,
    • a second semester dedicated to a 5-months internship abroad, within the February–August interval.
  2. There is also an option to do a short internship, which is meant for students desiring to follow additional courses during the second semester. As there are no computer science courses offered by ENS Paris-Saclay for M1 students in the second semester, this is mostly for students aiming to develop an expertise in a different field, like mathematics, biology, linguistics, etc. In that case, the curriculum includes:
    • a first semester of courses,
    • a second semester of courses until May or June,
    • a 2.5-months internship abroad between June and August.

Course Offer

The main source of courses is MPRI M1. These courses take place either at ENS Paris-Saclay or at ENS Paris. The timetable displays the main courses on offer. Note that the course of initiation to research is mandatory.

Each student can decide on their own curriculum, choosing extra courses, for instance from:


The year is passed if all of the following conditions are satisfied:

  1. the research internship, as evaluated through the report and defence, is passed; this internship grants 30 credits for a long internship and 15 credits for a short one,
  2. sufficiently many course credits are obtained, namely
    • with a long internship, 30 credits in total, including 18 credits from the courses on offer from MPRI M1, and out of which 24 credits are in computer science
    • with a short internship, 45 credits in total, including 24 credits from the courses on offer from MPRI M1, and out of which 30 credits are in computer science.


We welcome applications from top students with a B.Sc. in Computer Science or Mathematics and a strong background in theoretical computer science (in logic, complexity, algorithmics, formal languages, discrete mathematics, etc.) as well as an excellent command of English. Be sure to write a convincing cover letter explaining

  • your motivations for joining the programme,
  • why you have the prerequisites for it,
  • which courses you are most interested in attending, and
  • what you would like to do after this first year of Master.

Applications are processed through the Paris-Saclay university's Inception platform from March 1st, 2021 to June 30, 2021. Early applications are required if you wish to be sponsored for a grant. We run interviews including technical exercises as part of the admission process.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question. More information is available on this page?, along with funding information (see also the financial support at ENS Paris-Saclay).