06/14/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

French Students Classically Trained In the Art Of DJ'ing

At the Ecole des DJ in southern France, the classroom is a dance floor and fieldwork is done in clubs. Students -- and professors -- are hipsters, and they take their work seriously.

The DJ college, founded in 2001 by former real-estate salesman Pascal Tassy, is supported by the French government. In curriculum that lasts less than two years, students study copyright law, musical genres and record scratching. Competition to gain entry to the school is intense: 250 people apply for 45 spots.

The Wall Street Journal has more:

During their time at the school, students apprentice at dance clubs and earn modest pay that is partly borne by the government. Last November, the ministry of employment came up with an official DJ designation--"animateur musicale et scenique".

"This is a craft that was crying out for formal training," said Mr. Tassy, 47 years old. "We talked to nightclub owners and discovered there was a real need for DJs to be educated with more structure."

And so the school works diligently to educate France's next generation of DJ elite. Students are often must face scrutiny from knowledgeable professors.

Esteban Duret, 21, got an assignment to play a set of funk. He peered into his laptop, tweaked a few settings, and put on "Fascinated" by the 1980s electro-pop band Company B.

"Cut!" yelled [Professor Nico] Ortiz, 37. "We've got a serious issue here. Company B's 'Fascinated' has never been funk. If you get away with that at the exam, it'll be smoke and mirrors. Company B is New Wave, OK? Continue."

What do you think? Would you go -- or send your kid -- to DJ college?