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Head of Department: Miss R Thomas

Syllabus Title: A-LEVEL FRENCH

Exam Board: AQA

Length of course: 2 years

Entry requirements: Grade 6 or above in French plus GCSE grade 5 in English and Maths.


“Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going.” Rita Mae Brown

The A-Level specification builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. It constitutes an integrated study with a focus on language, culture and society. It fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity, which are valuable to the individual and society. The content is suitable for students who wish to progress to employment or further study, including a Modern Languages degree.Students studying A-Level French are encouraged to take the opportunity for a homestay and study visit or a work experience placement in France. 

Topics studied in this course:

Aspects of French-speaking society - current trends:
• The changing nature of family (La famille en voie de changement)
• The ‘cyber-society’ (La cyber-société)
• The place of voluntary work (Le rôle du bénévolat)

Aspects of French-speaking society - current issues:
• Positive features of a diverse society (Les aspects positifs d’une société diverse)
• Life for the marginalised (Quelle vie pour les marginalisés?)
• How criminals are treated (Comment on traite les criminels)

Artistic culture in the French-speaking world:
• A culture proud of its heritage (Une culture fière de son patrimoine)
• Contemporary francophone music (La musique francophone contemporaine)
• Cinema: the 7th art form (Cinéma : le septième art)

Aspects of political life in the French-speaking world:
• Teenagers, the right to vote and political commitment (Les ados, le droit de vote et l’engagement politique)
• Demonstrations, strikes – who holds the power? (manifestations, grèves – à qui le pouvoir ?)
• Politics and immigration (La politique et l’immigration)

Grammar: Students will study the grammatical system and structures of the language during their course. 

Literary texts and films: Students study a text and a film. In Year 12 students are currently studying a film called La Haine and in Year 13 students are studying a book called No et Moi.

Coursework and assessment of the course:

Paper 1: Listening, Reading and Responding  - 2.5hrs, 100 marks (50%)
• Aspects of French-speaking society: current trends
• Aspects of French-speaking society: current issues
• Artistic culture in the French-speaking world
• Aspects of political life in the French-speaking world
• Grammar

Paper 2: Writing - 2hrs, 80 marks (20%)
• One text and one film
• Grammar

Paper 3: Speaking - 60 marks (30%)
• Individual research project
• One of four themes (aspects of French-speaking society: current trends, aspects of French-speaking society: current issues, artistic culture in the French-speaking world, or aspects of political life in the French-speaking world)

Post A-Level:

There will be a range of opportunities open to students, enabling them to continue to use and further develop their language skills and knowledge of contemporary society. Some students may pursue degree courses in Languages, which include a year abroad, whilst others may study for a Language qualification combined with subjects such as the Arts, History, Social Sciences and Business. Having a Language A-Level will improve your employability, in particular with companies which have international links. Whether you are interested in continuing your studies or working in the UK or abroad, a Language course will open many doors!

What the students say about this course:

“French is a wonderful subject that can open doors to many careers. It is such a complex yet beautiful language and the lessons we have give us such a great understanding of all the culture of France”

"Both of my teachers make learning fun and exciting"

"My teachers encourage me to go above and beyond in lessons"

"Everyone can have their say each lesson and we all work together"

"Taking French has opened my eyes to the rich heritage of the country"

"French helps me with my speaking and communication skills"

"French will give my a head start in future job opportunities"

“Learning a language is such a great way to broaden your skill set; even if you weren’t aiming for a language based job just by being able to speak a second language can open so many opportunities, not to mention how attractive it is to employers in almost all industries!”

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