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French Language for Contemporary France (LL307)

(Equivalent to level 7)

This module runs in Term 1, please also see French Language for Enterprise for Term 2.



Advanced. The module is offered to students who have an advanced knowledge of French: i.e. good A level + 2 years of further study (or equivalent), who have successfully completed French 6 or French for Business - Advanced 2, and/ or have lived in a French speaking country.

Main Objectives:

This module is designed to enable the students to use French in furtherance of their career by familiarising them with aspects of French language and institutions, socioeconomic forces, political scene, culture.


15 CREDITS, also available for 12 CREDITS.


One 2-hour language class each week for 9 weeks (including written examination).

Students are reminded that 1 credit = 10 hours of study, therefore the minimum expected amount of study is 120 hours. A substantial amount of independent study is therefore required. Students can make use of Moodle to facilitate this.

Students can take part in the online exchange with the Université Clermont Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand, France.


Magali Toscan

Course Text

No textbook is required. Selected texts will be provided.

Course Description

The module is:

• taught entirely in French

• organised around one theme per week (see indicative list below) exploring such aspects as economic, political and social forces, contemporary culture.

• requiring students to read a selection of documents and write an essay related to the weekly theme.

• skill-based so the syllabus will draw on a variety of media, e.g. radio, television, newspapers, interview, novel/play excerpts, blogs/forums in French etc. to enable students to build and increase their language proficiency, cultural awareness and appreciation of contemporary France.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module, students will have to:

  • Demonstrate a high level of language proficiency by articulating more fluently, confidently and spontaneously in French in a variety of contexts.
  • Write with a high level of fluency and accuracy in an appropriate register and to construct and sustain complex arguments in writing in French.
  • Communicate complex information, ideas and arguments at near native speaker level. In particular, demonstrating high-level knowledge and understanding of French vocabulary, structures, registers and varieties of the language, as well as have a good command of idiomatic expressions and colloquialism.
  • Demonstrate an enhanced awareness of French contemporary issues, knowledge of French culture and deeper intercultural awareness.

By the end of the course, students should be able to perform at Level C1+ Proficient user (operational proficiency) of the Common European Framework.

Indicative list of themes:

What does the sterotypical French person look like?

France: a land of “joie de vivre” or melancholy?

Is France a country of revolution or immobiltity?

Is France egalitarian or elitist?

Are French Presidents elected monarchs?

Is debating about immigration possible in France?

The French obsession with their language: myth or reality?

In addition, topics in the news will be introduced for discussion and comment, in spoken and written form, to emphasise the contemporary character of the module.

Assessment Scheme:

Assessment summary and skills weighting: Assessment

Marking criteria (written): Marking criteria

Marking criteria (oral): Marking criteria