How Do You Say “Professors” In French?

Are you planning to learn French? Bienvenue! Learning a new language can be a challenging yet rewarding experience. While there are many reasons to learn French, one of the most common is to communicate with the millions of French speakers around the world. Whether you’re traveling to France or simply want to expand your language skills, knowing how to say “professors” in French is an essential part of your language journey.

The French translation of “professors” is “professeurs.” This word is pronounced as “pro-fes-ur” with the emphasis on the second syllable. It is a masculine noun, so you would use “le” as the definite article before it, as in “le professeur.”

How Do You Pronounce The French Word For “Professors”?

Learning how to properly pronounce words in a foreign language can be challenging, but it is an important step in mastering the language. If you are wondering how to pronounce the French word for “professors,” you have come to the right place.

The French word for “professors” is “professeurs”, which is pronounced as “pro-fes-sur” in English phonetics.

To break it down further, here is the phonetic breakdown of the word:

– “pro” is pronounced as “proh”
– “fes” is pronounced as “fess”
– “sur” is pronounced as “sur”

To properly pronounce “professeurs,” it is important to pay attention to the following tips:

1. Stress the second syllable: In French, the stress is usually placed on the second-to-last syllable of a word. Therefore, you should stress the “fes” syllable in “professeurs.”

2. Pay attention to the “u” sound: The “u” sound in French is different from the English “u” sound. It is pronounced with rounded lips and is similar to the “oo” sound in “moon.” Make sure to round your lips when pronouncing the “u” in “professeurs.”

3. Practice, practice, practice: As with any new language, practice is key to mastering pronunciation. Listen to audio recordings of French speakers pronouncing “professeurs” and try to mimic their pronunciation.

In summary, the French word for “professors” is “professeurs,” pronounced as “pro-fes-sur” in English phonetics. To properly pronounce the word, stress the second syllable, pay attention to the “u” sound, and practice as much as possible.

Proper Grammatical Use Of The French Word For “Professors”

When communicating in a language other than your native tongue, it is of utmost importance to use proper grammar to convey your message accurately. This is especially true when using the French word for “professors.”

Placement Of The French Word For Professors In Sentences

The French word for “professors” is “professeurs.” When using this word in a sentence, it is typically placed before the verb:

  • Les professeurs enseignent les matières différentes. (The professors teach different subjects.)
  • Les professeurs de français sont très compétents. (The French professors are very competent.)

Verb Conjugations Or Tenses

When using “professeurs” in a sentence, the verb must be conjugated appropriately. The exact conjugation will depend on the tense being used. For example:

  • Présent: Les professeurs enseignent. (The professors teach.)
  • Passé composé: Les professeurs ont enseigné. (The professors taught.)
  • Imparfait: Les professeurs enseignaient. (The professors were teaching.)

Agreement With Gender And Number

As with many French nouns, “professeurs” must agree with the gender and number of the subject. If the subject is masculine and plural, then “professeurs” is used. If the subject is feminine and plural, then “professeures” is used.

  • Les professeurs enseignent. (The male professors teach.)
  • Les professeures enseignent. (The female professors teach.)

Common Exceptions

There are a few common exceptions to the rules outlined above. For example, when referring to a specific professor by name, the word “professeur” is used regardless of gender:

  • Le professeur Dupont est très compétent. (Professor Dupont is very competent.)
  • La professeur Martin est très compétente. (Professor Martin is very competent.)

Additionally, in certain contexts, the word “enseignant” may be used instead of “professeur” to refer to a teacher or instructor in a more general sense.

Examples Of Phrases Using The French Word For “Professors”

French language learners often need to know how to say the word “professors” in French. Not only is it useful for everyday conversations, but it’s also crucial for academic purposes. Here are some commonly used phrases that include the French word for professors:

1. Les Professeurs

The most straightforward way to refer to professors in French is to use the word “les professeurs.” This phrase translates directly to “the professors” in English. For example:

  • Les professeurs de l’université sont très compétents. (The professors at the university are very competent.)
  • Les professeurs de français sont très patients. (The French professors are very patient.)

2. Les Enseignants

Another word that can be used to refer to professors in French is “les enseignants.” This phrase is a bit more general and can refer to any type of teacher, but it’s commonly used in academic settings to refer to professors. For example:

  • Les enseignants de l’école sont en grève. (The teachers at the school are on strike.)
  • Les enseignants de mathématiques sont très compétents. (The math teachers are very competent.)

3. Les Maîtres De Conférences

In some academic settings in France, professors are referred to as “les maîtres de conférences.” This phrase is used specifically for professors who are not yet tenured. For example:

  • Les maîtres de conférences doivent publier régulièrement pour obtenir une titularisation. (The non-tenured professors must publish regularly to obtain tenure.)
  • Les maîtres de conférences sont souvent très impliqués dans la recherche. (The non-tenured professors are often very involved in research.)

Example Dialogue

Here’s an example conversation in French that includes the word “professors”:

Person 1: As-tu des cours intéressants cette année? (Do you have any interesting classes this year?)
Person 2: Oui, j’ai un cours de philosophie avec le professeur Dupont. Il est très passionnant. (Yes, I have a philosophy class with Professor Dupont. He’s very passionate.)
Person 1: Et qu’en est-il de tes autres professeurs? (And what about your other professors?)
Person 2: Je n’ai pas encore rencontré mes autres enseignants, mais j’espère qu’ils seront aussi bons que le professeur Dupont. (I haven’t met my other teachers yet, but I hope they’ll be as good as Professor Dupont.)

More Contextual Uses Of The French Word For “Professors”

While “professeurs” is the most common French word for “professors,” its usage can vary depending on the context. Below are some of the different uses of the word:

Formal Usage

In formal settings, such as academia or official documents, “professeurs” is the appropriate term to use when referring to professors. This is the most widely recognized and accepted usage of the word.

Informal Usage

In informal settings, such as among friends or in casual conversation, “profs” is a common abbreviation used to refer to professors. This term is less formal but widely understood by French speakers.

Other Contexts

In addition to formal and informal usage, “professeurs” can also be used in various slang, idiomatic, cultural, or historical contexts. For example:

  • “Professeur Tournesol” is the French name for the character Professor Calculus in the Tintin comic book series.
  • “Les profs” is a popular French comedy film series about a group of unruly teachers.
  • In French hip-hop culture, “professeur” can be used as slang to refer to a respected authority figure or mentor.

Popular Cultural Usage

One popular cultural usage of “professeurs” is in the French education system. In France, professors are highly respected and play a crucial role in shaping the country’s future generations. As a result, the term “professeurs” carries a certain level of prestige and authority.

Regional Variations Of The French Word For “Professors”

As with any language, there are regional variations in the French language, including the word for “professors.” While the standard French term for “professors” is “professeurs,” there are variations in how this word is used in different French-speaking countries.

Usage In Different French-speaking Countries

In France, the word “professeurs” is used to refer to both university and secondary school teachers. In Canada, the word “professeurs” is also used, but it is more commonly used to refer to university professors specifically. In Switzerland, the word “professeurs” is used for both university and secondary school teachers, but with some regional variations.

Outside of these countries, the word for “professors” may vary even more. In some African countries where French is spoken, the term “enseignants” is often used for both university and secondary school teachers.

Regional Pronunciations

While the word for “professors” may be the same in different French-speaking countries, the pronunciation may vary. In France, for example, the “s” in “professeurs” is pronounced, whereas in Canada, the “s” is often silent.

Additionally, within France itself, there are regional variations in pronunciation. In the southern part of France, for example, the “eu” sound in “professeurs” is often pronounced more like “euh,” while in the north, it may be pronounced more like “eu.”

Overall, while the word for “professors” may be the same in different French-speaking countries, it is important to be aware of regional variations in both usage and pronunciation.

Other Uses Of The French Word For “Professors” In Speaking & Writing

While the French word for “professors” is commonly used to refer to educators in higher education, it can also have other meanings depending on the context in which it is used. Understanding these different uses is essential for effective communication in French-speaking contexts.

Academic Contexts

In academic contexts, “professeurs” is the term used to refer to professors and teachers in higher education. This can include those who teach at universities, colleges, and other post-secondary institutions. It is also used to refer to those who hold the title of “professor” in these institutions, regardless of whether they are actively teaching or not.

Professional Contexts

In professional contexts, “professeurs” can also refer to individuals who are experts in their field. For example, someone who is a “professeur de droit” (law professor) may also be recognized as a legal expert outside of the academic setting. In this context, the term is used to acknowledge the individual’s expertise and authority in their field.

Everyday Contexts

Outside of academic and professional contexts, “professeurs” can also be used more broadly to refer to anyone who teaches or instructs others. For example, a dance teacher may be referred to as a “professeur de danse.” In this context, the term is used to acknowledge the individual’s role as a teacher or instructor, regardless of their formal qualifications.

Distinguishing Between Uses

When using the French word for “professors,” it is important to consider the context in which it is being used in order to determine the intended meaning. In academic contexts, the term is generally used to refer to educators in higher education, while in professional and everyday contexts, it may have a broader meaning. Paying attention to the specific context and the intended meaning can help ensure effective communication in French-speaking contexts.

Common Words And Phrases Similar To The French Word For “Professors”

Synonyms And Related Terms

There are several words and phrases in French that are similar in meaning to the word “professors.” Here are some of the most common:

  • Enseignants – This is perhaps the closest synonym to “professors” in French. It refers to anyone who teaches, from primary school teachers to university professors.
  • Professeurs d’université – This phrase specifically refers to professors who teach at the university level.
  • Maîtres de conférences – This term is used in France to refer to a type of associate professor.
  • Chargés de cours – This refers to individuals who are contracted to teach a specific course at a university or other educational institution.

While these words and phrases are all similar in meaning to “professors,” they may be used in slightly different contexts or with different connotations.


On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are also several words and phrases in French that are antonyms of “professors.” Here are a few:

  • Étudiants – This term refers to students, who are the opposite of professors in the educational hierarchy.
  • Apprentis – This term refers to apprentices or trainees, who are typically learning a trade or skill rather than teaching it.
  • Novices – This term refers to beginners or newcomers, who are just starting to learn a subject or skill.

While these words and phrases are not directly related to “professors,” they provide a useful contrast and help to clarify the meaning of the word.

Mistakes To Avoid When Using The French Word For “Professors”

When speaking French, it’s important to use the correct word for “professors” to avoid any misunderstandings. Non-native speakers may make common mistakes when using this word, which can lead to confusion and incorrect communication. In this section, we will highlight these mistakes and provide tips on how to avoid them.

Common Mistakes

One common mistake made by non-native speakers is using the word “professeurs” instead of “enseignants.” While “professeurs” can be used to refer to university professors, it is not the appropriate word to use when referring to all types of teachers, including those in primary and secondary schools.

Another mistake is using the feminine form of “professeur” when referring to a male teacher. In French, the word “professeur” is masculine, and the feminine form is “professeure.” Using the feminine form when referring to a male teacher can be considered disrespectful or even insulting.

Tips To Avoid Mistakes

To avoid these mistakes, it’s important to understand the context in which the word “professors” is being used. If you are referring to teachers in general, use the word “enseignants.” If you are specifically referring to university professors, then “professeurs” is appropriate.

When referring to a male teacher, use the masculine form of “professeur.” If you are unsure of the gender, it’s best to use the masculine form as a default.

It’s also helpful to practice using these words in context and to seek feedback from native speakers to ensure you are using them correctly.


In conclusion, we have explored the different ways to say professors in French. We learned that the most common term is “professeur,” which is used to refer to both male and female professors. We also discussed other terms such as “enseignant” and “maître de conférences” that are used in specific contexts.

It’s important to note that the French language has its own set of rules and nuances, and learning how to say professors correctly is just the beginning. To truly master the language, it’s essential to practice speaking and listening to French in real-life conversations.

Encouragement To Practice French

Learning a new language can be challenging, but it’s also incredibly rewarding. By practicing your French skills, you’ll not only be able to communicate with native speakers but also gain a deeper understanding of French culture and customs.

So don’t be afraid to use the French word for professors in your daily conversations. Whether you’re traveling to a French-speaking country or simply chatting with a French-speaking friend, every opportunity to practice your language skills is a step towards fluency.

Remember, the key to success is consistency and dedication. Keep practicing and learning, and before you know it, you’ll be speaking French like a native.

Shawn Manaher

Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority and He’s a seasoned innovator, harnessing the power of technology to connect cultures through language. His worse translation though is when he refers to “pancakes” as “flat waffles”.