St Augustine's Catholic College

A Level French

”Choosing an A-level language is a smart move if you want a fascinating subject that offers you a range of career possibilities at the end and is a lot of fun along the way.”

A level French will enable you to develop your linguistic skills alongside your understanding of the culture and society of countries where French is spoken.

Your studies will include technological and social change, looking at diversity and the benefits it brings. You will study highlights of French-speaking artistic culture, including francophone music and cinema, and learn about political engagement and who wields political power in the French-speaking world.

You will also explore the influence of the past on present-day French-speaking communities. Throughout your studies, you will learn the language in the context of French-speaking countries and the issues and influences which have shaped them. You will have the opportunity to study texts and film and carry out independent research on an area of your choice.

What will I learn?

Year 12

  • The changing nature of the family (La famille en voie de changement);

  • The “Cyber Society” (la «Cyber-société»);

  • The place of voluntary work (le rôle du bénévolat);

  • A culture proud of its heritage (une culture fière de son patrimoine);

  • Contemporary francophone music (musique francophone contemporaine);

  • Cinema: the 7th Art form (le cinéma: le septième Art).

Year 13

  • Positive features of a diverse society (Les aspects positifs d'une société);

  • Life for the marginalised (Quelle vie pour les marginalisés ?);

  • How criminals are treated (Comment on traite les criminels);

  • 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).

How will I be assessed?

The course is examined at the end of Year 13. Over the two years, students must study either one text and one film or two texts from a prescribed list.

Paper 1: Listening and reading questions plus translation into English and prose translation English into French (100 words each) 2hr 30 - 160 marks/40% of A Level

Paper 2: Writing – 2hrs - 90 marks/30% of A Level

Students write two essays either on one set text and one film or about two different literary works.

Paper 3: Speaking 21-23 mins + 5 mins prep time – 60 marks/30% of A Level

Discussion of one sub theme (5-6 mins; 25 marks) prompted by stimulus card.

Presentation (2 mins; 10 marks) followed by discussion (9-10 mins; 25 marks) of research project.

What other subjects can I study?

A Level French complements a whole variety of subjects. You may need language skills for all sorts of career destinations- doctors, psychologists and physiotherapists need language skills to communicate effectively with patients whether they work in the UK or overseas; businessmen, bankers and entrepreneurs all need language skills to make deals and sell products on the global market. Politicians, historians, geographers and holiday reps all need language skills to get to know the people and area that they are passionate about. A foreign language A -Level will complement and enhance your other studies.

Languages are an invaluable skill to have. Having a language can increase your job prospects and your future earnings. By speaking another language you are an asset to any company that trades internationally (and there are a lot of them). As we grapple with Brexit, language skills will be of paramount importance for the UK to trade and negotiate effectively with the rest of the world.

Plus, a language is also a pre-requisite for some university courses so it’s something to consider if you’re thinking about university in the future. Languages are key to the exciting multinational world we live in!