École Centrale Paris

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École Centrale Paris
Ecole Centrale Paris Logo.svg
Motto Leaders, entrepreneurs and innovators
Established 1829
Type Public, Grand établissement
President Hervé Biausser
Students 1,394
Location Châtenay-Malabry, France
Affiliations UniverSud Paris, Centrale Graduate School, CESAER
Website http://www.ecp.fr

Coordinates: 48°45′56.8″N 2°17′18.3″E / 48.765778°N 2.288417°E / 48.765778; 2.288417

École Centrale Paris is a French university-level institution (grande école) in the field of engineering. It is also known by its original name École Centrale des Arts et Manufactures, or ECP and its famous alumni are called Centraliens. Founded in 1829, it is one of the oldest and most prestigious engineering schools in France and has the special status of Grand établissement. École Centrale Paris offers graduate degree programs as well as PhD opportunities.

École Centrale Paris is one of the Centrale Graduate Schools associated as the Groupe Centrale network with its sister institutions (Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Beijing, Hyderabad (with Mahindra Group) and Casablanca).

It was the founding party in 1988 of the TIME (Top Industrial Managers for Europe) network, that enables student exchanges among leading European engineering schools. It is also a member of the UniverSud Paris and the CESAER association of European engineering schools.

The school, reputed for its international orientation, has partnerships with the best universities all over the world, such as Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Oxford University, Columbia University, RWTH Aachen University, ETH Zurich, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Northwestern University, University of California, Berkeley, University of Chicago, National University of Singapore, KAIST, Tsinghua University and University of Peking

In 2015, École Centrale Paris merged with Supélec and became CentraleSupélec. CentraleSupélec is a member of Université Paris-Saclay.


École Centrale Paris is located in Châtenay-Malabry, Hauts-de-Seine, a southern suburb of Paris, France (in the Île-de-France region), next to the Parc de Sceaux and its Château de Sceaux.


The École was founded in 1829 on a private initiative by Alphonse Lavallée, who became its first president, and three scientist associates: Eugène Peclet, Jean-Baptiste Dumas, and Théodore Olivier. The founding vision was to educate multidisciplinary engineers for the emerging industrial sector. The institution was offered to the French state in 1857 by its creator, Alphonse Lavallée.

Initially located in the Hôtel de Juigné (now Hôtel Salé and home to the Musée Picasso), it was transferred to rue Montgolfier in 1884, where it stayed until 1969. Its current location neighbours the Parc de Sceaux.

Former location of the École Centrale, rue Montgolfier in Paris (3rd arrondissement)

The Centralien Programme[edit]

The centralien Program is the original and main programme offered by the École. It is quite different from typical university or college studies; and specific to the French system of grandes écoles. Studies go beyond the undergraduate level and the engineering degree of École Centrale Paris (Ingénieur centralien or “centralien engineer”) is equivalent to a Master of Science. The curriculum is similar to those offered at other French grandes écoles, such as École Polytechnique, École des Mines de Paris, École Supérieure d'Électricité (Supélec), or École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées.


Most of the students are admitted after two to three years of classes préparatoires, which correspond to two years of post high-school education with heavy emphasis on Math and Physics (freshman and sophomore years at US universities). At the end of the second year (“Mathématiques spéciales”) students can take a nation-wide competitive entrance examination for the grandes écoles, including École Centrale Paris. The ECP recruits among the top 4% of the students in classes préparatoires,[1] who represent themselves 4% of higher education students, which makes it a selective and prestigious institution. A few students come from French top universities after completing three years of post high-school education. A significative contingent of students also comes from leading international universities which belong to the TIME network (Top Industrial Managers for Europe).


Education at the ECP is multidisciplinary and typically lasts three to four years. During the first year (Tronc Commun, or “Common Core”), students are required to take classes in science (Mathematics, Physics, Biology); in engineering (Continuum Mechanics, Heat transfer, Digital image processing, Computer programming,…) and in social sciences (Economics, Management, foreign languages,…). After this year of “Tronc commun”, students choose all their course in a list respecting expectations from the administration. An excellent level in sciences is required. Then in the third year, students chose a major in a particular field which they study for one year. After completing these 3 years of education, they receive the degree of “Ingénieur des arts et manufactures”, more commonly called “ingénieur centralien”.

National and international ties[edit]

The École Centrale Paris belongs to the French intergroupe des écoles centrales, together with École Centrale de Lyon, École Centrale de Lille, École Centrale de Nantes, École Centrale de Marseille and École Centrale de Pékin (Beijing).

Since 1837, the school has built important international ties with several world-renowned universities.


The ECP hosts eight laboratories:

The graduate school[edit]

In addition to the centralien training, the École Centrale Paris offers a broad range of master's programmes in science and engineering (1 year- or 2 year-programs). These programmes are open to applicants having completed their undergraduate studies at other institutions.[2]

The ECP also has a Ph.D. programme for students with a master's level. More than 200 doctoral candidates work in one of the 8 laboratories of the school.


Gustave Eiffel, designed the Eiffel Tower and the internal structure of the Statue of Liberty in New York

They include:

Notable faculty[edit]

They include:

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

External links[edit]