Exam Board: AQA
Requirements: GCSE French grade 6 or above
Why study French?
Studying A-level French will provide students with an understanding of cultural, political, and social contexts of the French-speaking world. While exploring a rich literary, artistic and historic heritage, they will gain a greater level of fluency in the language in order to debate and articulate ideas in French.
What skills are required?
Students need to have performed evenly across listening, reading, writing and speaking at GCSE. They need to have a wide range of vocabulary already present in order to build on it and access the resources.
Good linguists must be resilient and committed to work regularly at home on their vocabulary. They must show an interest in French or francophone culture and be open-minded.
To start with, students study an intensive grammar programme linked to the thematic content of current trends in French society and artistic culture in the French speaking-world. They then develop all skills while studying the topics previously mentioned as well as a film in French, for which they will practise essay-writing. Before the summer, students will familiarise themselves with the study skills necessary for independent research and will write up an action plan setting targets and milestones for their research project.
Students will study the current issues of French-speaking societies, as well as aspects of the francophone political life. They will also study a book in French and practise essay writing about the work chosen.
Independently, students will be expected to carry out their research project and prepare for their presentation and discussion about it.
How will it be assessed?
Paper 1: Listening, reading and writing
- 50% of A-level, 2hrs 30
Questions and translations about:
- 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
Paper 2: Writing
- 20% of A level, 2 hours
2x 300 words essay:
- 1 question on a text studied in class
- 1 question on a film studied in class
Paper 3: Speaking
- 30% of A level, 23 min
- Discussion of a sub-theme based on a stimulus card (5-6 min).
- Presentation (2min) and discussion of an individual research project (9-10 min).
- A-level French will give access to many dual degrees where studying French can be combined with history, business, politics, literature and plenty of other options. It opens doors to many work opportunities abroad, university exchanges and prestigious institutions. French can be linked to many sectors of employment, from diplomatic services to law and business. If you would like further information, please do speak to a member of the MFL department.