Part-time studies

Details regarding an arrangement of the duration of studies in the case of a handicap or chronic illness or in the case of a sports or musical career can be found on this page. No other motive can justify part-time studies at EPFL.

In the case of a simple missed test, please consult the page Withdrawing from subjects and tests and missing tests.

For support measures for courses, practical work, and exams in the case of a handicap, please consult this webpage.

Handicap or chronic illness

If you have a handicap or chronic illness that makes it impossible for you to study full time, you can obtain a prolongation of the maximum duration of your studies​​​​​​​.

In case of a prolongation during the first-year cycle, students must imperatively focus on block 1 during the autumn semester. Students who are missing too many grades in block 1 will not be allowed to continue to the second semester. Their only choices will be either to take a leave of absence during the second semester, or to accept a first failure at the first-year cycle and continue to the mise à niveau in the second semester.

To request an arrangement, please contact the Student Services Desk, making sure to provide a medical certificate that specifies the duration and rate (max. 50%) of your incapacity. In case of an incapacity above 50%, you will need to take a leave of absence from EPFL, and resume your studies once your incapacity allows you to study at 50% or more.

Arrangements are granted for a limited period of time. New requests must be made to prolong them, and updated proofs must be provided every year.

Sports or musical career

If you have a sports career in addition to your studies, at a national or international level (Swiss Olympic Card gold, silver, or bronze, or membre of a national team, or similar level)  and which implies regular training during the week and several competitions every year, or that you have a musical career in addition to your studies, at a national or international level and which implies regular rehearsals during the week and several performances every year, the following arrangements may be offered:

  • prolongation of the maximum duration of studies;
  • suppression of the obligation to repeat a failed subject no later than the following year;
  • possibility, with the approval of the teacher, for arrangements with subjects that require regular presence on the campus (e.g., applied work in a lab or workshop).

Additionally, competitions or performances may be considered valid reasons for missing tests. For more information regarding this type of absence, please consult the page Withdrawing from subjects and tests and missing tests.

In case of a prolongation during the first-year cycle, students must imperatively focus on block 1 during the autumn semester. Students who are missing too many grades in block 1 will not be allowed to continue to the second semester. Their only choices will be either to take a leave of absence during the second semester, or to accept a first failure at the first-year cycle and continue to the mise à niveau in the second semester.

To request an arrangement, please contact the Student Services Desk, making sure to provide a certificate that specifies the nature and form (schedules etc.) of your sports or musical duties for the coming academic year, signed by your federation (or club for team sports) or musical ensemble, no later than the 23rd of August. If applicable, please join a copy of your Swiss Olympic Card.

Arrangements are granted for a limited period of time. New requests must be made to prolong them, and updated proofs must be provided every year.