The 3 cycle degree structure (European LMD system)

BMD is also known as the LMD system (Licence-Master-Doctorate).
The LMD consists of a study framework based on 3 cycles of qualification leading to a Bachelor’s degree (Licence in France), a Master’s degree and a Doctoral degree.

The 3 cycle degree structure

The beginning of the academic year 2004-2005 saw the University of La Rochelle enter the European Higher Education Area with the BMD (Bachelor-Master-Doctorate).

The aims of the reform

  • A clearer presentation of the degree courses by field of study, organised as study paths, leading to degrees that are recognised throughout Europe,
  • Increased national and international mobility,
  • Greater flexibility for each student in terms of both the content and the time taken to complete the degree courses,
  • Improved access to further education at any age.

Main aspects of BMD/LMD

  • Courses are organised by semesters,
  • Courses are designed along study paths, with a logical progression,
  • The study paths are made up of a combination of ‘Unités d’Enseignement’ (UE) which are either compulsory, optional or additional; each UE contains ‘Éléments Constitutifs’ or EC,
  • The successful completion of a UE is rewarded with credits known as ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) which can be transferred and are accumulated; the ECTS reflect the overall workload of the student (courses, experiments, class work, personal work, etc.) where 1 semester = 30 credits,
  • A supplement to the degree certificate gives details of the skills and knowledge acquired,
  • Teams of tutors help the student to map out their personal and professional project and guarantee that it is consistent with the courses chosen.

University entrance requirements

  • The Baccalauréat
  • The Diplômes d’Accès aux Etudes Universitaires - 2 DAEU options are avalable:
    • option A specialised in arts,
    • option B specialised in science.
  • A French or foreign diploma accepted as an equivalent to the Baccalauréat

Degree courses

4 fields of study for the DUT, professional Licences, Licences and Master’s degrees :

Doctoral Schools

The doctoral courses on offer at the University of La Rochelle are organised in doctoral schools

The degrees

University Institute of Technology Diploma

It comprises 4 semesters which are worth 120 credits.


The Licence degree is organised according to subjects. It comprises 6 semesters worth 180 credits.

Professional Licence

The Professional Licence is organised according to subjects and specialisations. It comprises 2 semesters of 60 credits; the entrance requirements are 120 credits i.e. 180 credits on successful completion of the degree.


The Master’s degree is organised according to subjects and specialisations; the majority of the Master’s degrees at the University of La Rochelle are neither research nor vocation-oriented. However, for certain subjects, the choice of a research or professional specialisation can be made at the end of the 2nd semester. Entrance to M2 may be subject to selection for all subjects.
The degree comprises 4 semesters worth 120 credits and the entrance requirements are 180 credits i.e. 300 credits on successful completion of the degree.

Doctoral degree

Open to students who have a Master’s degree or an equivalent level of study. It is awarded after the student defends his thesis in public (a viva) and is the highest level of study in Higher education.
University Diplomas

The aim of these diplomas is to confer a specialisation, provide a particular skill or guarantee a certain level of education and training.
Entrance requirements for all of these diplomas can be met through the ‘validation des acquis de l’expérience’ (VAE) [Professional Experience Accreditation].

published on Thursday 19 January 2012


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