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Online course materials for FREN20210

French Language and Life II


Unit code: FREN20210
Credit Rating: 20
Unit level: Level 2
Teaching period(s): Full year
Offered by French Studies
Available as a free choice unit?: N

Requisites

Prerequisite

Additional Requirements

FREN20210 - Pre-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.
By the end of the course, students should be able to perform at Level B2 of the Common European Framework.

Overview

This course is designed to develop further the students' ability to understand spoken and written French and to express coherent ideas and arguments orally and in writing. Emphasis is placed on appropriate use of syntactic structures in the production of texts, as well as grammatical accuracy. A range of topics touching on contemporary French and Francophone cultures will be covered in the oral and written classes (such as professional life in France, the French language in the world). Students will learn how to write their own CV and cover letter as well as prepare themselves to answer questions in a job interview.
Written components:
Building on the work undertaken at Level 1, these classes enable students to produce increasingly accurate and sophisticated written French, and to analyse and write increasingly complex texts in French.
Oral component:
The oral classes will reinforce work done in the written course which they will complement through emphasis on vocabulary acquisition and its use in appropriate contexts, preparation for the year abroad, including formal interviews, and work on pronunciation, stress and accentuation of oral French. Independent learning also plays a vital role in these areas


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 and poetry to press including business articles, film and actualité.
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 and intonation, 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

 

  • 3 weekly contact hours (1 x 2hr written (business/standard) French/grammar seminar and 1 x 1hr oral seminar.
  • Two weekly office hours and availability at other times by appointment;
  • 6 x 1hr voluntary grammar workshops (3 in each semester)
  • 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 monitoring independent study.
  • Relevant links to grammatical, lexical, current affairs and reading resources will be provided via Blackboard.

Learning outcomes

Demonstrate an understanding of a wide variety of both written and spoken French stimulus materials.

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.
Write idiomatic French, showing awareness of stylistic and structural differences between French and English appropriate for Level 2 study;
Write grammatically accurate French, showing precise knowledge of the aspects of grammar covered in seminars and by the Level 2 Independent Learning Programme;
Speak with a degree of fluency and spontaneity appropriate for Level 2 study, and take an active part in discussion on a range of topics;
Demonstrate an understanding of the basis of pronunciation and intonation in French and a sound knowledge of the pertinent French symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet;
Deliver structured presentations in French.

Knowledge and understanding

On successful completion of this course unit, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of a wide variety of both written and spoken French stimulus materials.

Intellectual skills

On successful completion of this course unit, 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.

Practical skills

 

  • On successful completion of this course unit, students will be able to:
  • Write idiomatic French, showing awareness of stylistic and structural differences between French and English appropriate for Level 2 study;
  • Write grammatically accurate French, showing precise knowledge of the aspects of grammar covered in seminars and by the Level 2 Independent Learning Programme;
  • Speak with a degree of fluency and spontaneity appropriate for Level 2 study, and take an active part in discussion on a range of topics;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the basis of pronunciation and intonation in French and a sound knowledge of the pertinent French symbols in the International Phonetic Alphabet;

Transferable skills and personal qualities

On successful completion of this course unit, 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.

Assessment Further Information

One written examination at the end of Semester 2                              1.45 hrs               40%

Assessed Exercise 1
Translation into French in invigilated conditions                                    1 hour                  10%

Assessed Exercise 2
A résumé exercise done in invigilated conditions                                   1.30 hrs               10%

One assessed oral presentation at the end of Semester 1                   10 minutes           10%

1 x oral examination at the end of Semester 2                                      10 minutes           10%

1 x aural comprehension examination at the end of Semester 2           1 hour                  10%

 

Weekly homework tasks on Blackboard,                                                                            10%

comprising one grammar and one oral task each week. 

90% of these activities must be completed within a given time to receive 5% each semester.

 

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 business, historical and contemporary press texts.

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

Bescherelle: La conjugaison pour tous, Paris: Hatier, 2006

Alain Vercollier, Claudine Vercollier and Kay Bourlier, Difficultés expliquées du français for English Speakers, CLE International, 2004

Robert Hawkins and Richard Towell, French Grammar and Usage, London: Arnold, 2010

Feedback methods

In-class comments made during discussion regarding the relevance and linguistic quality of student responses and participation.

Written/oral comments on oral exercises. 

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.

Written comments are made on the semester 2 assessed exercise, which is returned to students within two weeks of the presentation date. 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

  • Assessment practical exam - 2 hours
  • Assessment written exam - 1.8 hours
  • Seminars - 66 hours
  • Tutorials - 44 hours
  • Independent study hours - 86.2 hours

Teaching staff

Catherine Franc - Unit coordinator

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