Since it was founded in 1431 by Pope Eugene IV and chartered by King Charles VII, the University of Poitiers has been a prominent actor of the town cultural life. Among its famous students were Joachim Du Bellay, Jean-Louis Guez de Balzac, François Rabelais, René Descartes, and Francis Bacon, to name but a few.
The University of Poitiers was originally composed of five faculties: theology, canon law, civil law, medicine, and arts. When it reopened, after the French Revolution, new faculties such as the faculty of science and the faculty of letters were created.
Today, the University of Poitiers develops its scientific activity in a large set of academic fields. It offers its more than 23,000 students various opportunities to study in these fields. Its research involvement in the corresponding scientific domains is attested by its 48 research centers and 8 thematic doctoral schools delivering some 180 doctorates every year.