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Online course materials for FREN10210

French Language and Life I


Unit code: FREN10210
Credit Rating: 20
Unit level: Level 1
Teaching period(s): Full year
Offered by French Studies
Available as a free choice unit?: N

Requisites

Co-Requisite

Aims

This course is designed to help students develop their competencies in spoken and written French, by means of language exercises, varied linguistic materials, and French grammar.

Overview

This unit studies the French language in context using a variety of written and spoken materials to achieve its aims.  It is divided into a weekly written/grammar seminar, an oral seminar and a guided independent learning programme.

Materials range from novels, poetry and film to historical and contemporary press.

Written production includes targeted translation into French and free writing exercises.  Grammar is studied in context.  Self-correction techniques (including dictionary skills) are an integral part of the module.

Oral skills include pronunciation, aural comprehension exercises, debating and presentations.

The guided independent learning programme encourages students to build up a portfolio of personal weekly tasks, which is presented in the oral examination at the end of the year.

Teaching and learning methods

  • The course is divided into 1 two hour written/grammar class and 1 one hour oral class.   All classes are interactive and necessitate students to engage with and respond to themes studied and materials and exercises provided.
  • The language of teaching and assessment is French.
  • Extensive resources will be available via Blackboard. These will include supplementary materials to aid students in their Independent Learning in preparing for classes and assessment as well as links to on-line resources.
  • Blackboard will also be used for weekly on-line testing purposes.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course students will be able to perform at Level B1+/B2 of the Common European Framework (CEF)). Assuming that all classes have been attended, coursework completed and a considerable amount of private study undertaken students will be able to:

Knowledge and understanding

  • Understand an deploy the structures and registers of French as well as major pragmatic aspects pertinent at this level of study;
  • Show knowledge and understanding of aspects of the culture and society of France and of la francophonie through study of a wide range of media, including the press, cinema, music and literary extracts.

Intellectual skills

By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of a range of social, cultural, intellectual and professional issues in France and the French speaking world, as reflected in the materials studied;
  • Analyse and interpret acquired information and synthesise it as knowledge;
  • Reason in a coherent and self-reflective manner.

Practical skills

By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of a wide variety of both written and spoken French stimulus materials;
  • Write idiomatic French, showing awareness of stylistic and structural differences between French and English appropriate for Level 1 study;
  • Write grammatically accurate French, showing precise knowledge of the aspects of grammar covered in seminars and by the Level 1 Independent Learning Programme;
  • Speak with a degree of fluency and spontaneity appropriate for Level 1 study, and take an active part in discussion on a range of topics;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the basis of pronunciation in French and a sound knowledge of the pertinent French symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet;
  • Deliver structured presentations in French

Transferable skills and personal qualities

By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Work effectively with peers, both inside and outside the classroom;
  • Take responsibility for their own learning of French through independent learning and self-reflection as well as through the use of available resources via the Language Centre, the Internet and the Blackboard virtual learning environment;
  • Work independently to produce a portfolio, showing the ability to self-manage, take the initiative and make decisions;
  • Use information technology effectively and appropriately;
  • Understand more fully the nature and extent of cultural diversity.

Employability skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Group/team working
  • Leadership
  • Oral communication
  • Written communication
  • OtherFormal presentation skills, negotiation skills, problem solving, adaptability, decision making, time management, initiative, self-discipline, organization

Assessment Further Information

Assessment task

Length

Weighting within unit

Written / Grammar

 

60% overall

1 x assessed Coursework translation exercise (Sem 1)

1hr

20%

1 x written examination (Sem 2)

1hr 30

40%

Oral

 

30% overall

1 x in-class formal presentation (Sem 1 or 2)

Approx. 10 mins

10%

1 x aural comprehension (Sem 2)

1hr

10%

1 x oral examination (Sem 2)

Approx. 10 mins

10%

ILP + Weekly on-line exercises n/a 10% overall

 

Syllabus

This unit studies the French language in context using a variety of written and spoken materials to achieve its aims.  It is divided into a weekly written/grammar seminar, an oral seminar and a guided independent learning programme.

The course employs a wide variety of written and spoken stimulus materials to study the French language in context and achieve its linguistic aims.

Materials range from novels, poetry and film to historical and contemporary press.

Written production includes targeted translation into French and free writing exercises.  Grammar is studied in context.  Self-correction techniques (including dictionary skills) are an integral part of the module.

Oral skills include pronunciation, aural comprehension exercises, debating and presentations.

The guided independent learning programme encourages students to build up a portfolio of personal weekly tasks, which is presented in the oral examination at the end of the year.

Recommended reading

Set texts

  • Bescherelle: La conjugaison pour tous. 2006. Paris: Hatier
  •  Robert Hawkins and Richard Towell. 4th edn. 2015. French Grammar and Usage. London: Arnold

Recommended texts:

  • A good bilingual dictionary (such as the Collins Robert French Dictionary or the Oxford Hachette French dictionary)
  • A good monolingual dictionary (such as the Petit Robert or the Dictionnaire Hachette encyclopédique

Feedback methods

  • In-class comments made during discussion regarding the relevance and linguistic quality of student responses and participation.
  • Written/oral comments on oral presentations.  All written comments are normally returned within two weeks of the presentation date. Face-to-face discussion if required.
  • Written comments on non-assessed coursework plus face-to-face discussion if desired. All written exercises are normally returned within two weeks of the submission date (during semester time) and in time for corrections to be applied to assessed exercises.
  • Written comments are made on the semester 1 assessed exercise, which is returned to students in Week 1 of semester 2. Feedback may be complemented by face-to-face discussion if desired. 
  • All students are entitled to request individual feedback on their examination performance, based on the comments of examiners, and on the understanding that this de-anonymizes the student.

Study hours

  • Practical classes & workshops - 6 hours
  • Seminars - 66 hours
  • Independent study hours - 128 hours

Teaching staff

Annie Morton - Unit coordinator

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