Created in 1964, CAVILAM-AF (Centre d’Approches VIvantes des LAngues et des Médias) – Alliance Française is a non-profit organization which aims to teach French as a foreign language. Its founder members are the Universities of Clermont-Ferrand and the City council of Vichy. CAVILAM-AF joined the network of the Alliance française in 2012. Each year, the centre trains about 5,000 trainees from more than 130 nationalities to French as a foreign language but also Italian, German, Spanish and English. CAVILAM-AF has 70 permanent employees, including 27 teachers. The number of staff increases in high summer season (about 200 employees).

An innovative methodology

The teaching methods are marked by its strong focus on the intercultural and support the principles of the Common European Framework of reference for languages (CEFR).

Pedagogical innovation is central within the CAVILAM-AF global approach by the creation of new methods and materials which promote the use of ICT in the learning of foreign languages.


CAVILAM – Alliance française received the European Label of languages in 2009 for its project “Espace Apprendre” in collaboration with the French Academy’s radio Canal Académie. Other notable European distinctions have been awarded to CAVILAM for the following projects: “7 jours sur la planète” with TV5MONDE (2007), Babelweb (2012), ELENA (2014).