Did you know that French is spoken officially in 33 countries across every continent and is an official language of the EU parliament and organisations such as UNESCO and NATO?
France also plays an important role in the world of cinema, fashion and cuisine and learning the language could give you an advantage when searching for a job. Your skills gained at GCSE will be widened so that you can communicate more effectively and you will also study the culture of French speaking countries.
Lessons are typically conducted in French and we have a native speaker who holds conversation classes with A-level students. The course has accompanying online activities, which enable you to immerse yourself in the language both at school and at home and you will have access to the sixth form languages study room with computers, TV and magazines where you can practise your skills.
You will have the chance to experience the language and culture first hand, either by taking part in an exchange to Brittany or by organising work experience in France.
The AQA French A Level covers a range of thought-provoking topics and the examination has three papers at the end of the course: paper 1 – listening, reading and translation (50%) based on authentic material on topics like music, festivals, immigration and treatment of criminals. The writing paper (paper 2 - 20%) will ask you to write about literary texts and films and the speaking examination (paper 3 - 30%) is designed for you to research an area of individual interest as well as speak on the topic areas.
We start in Year 12 with unit 1.1, which covers current trends in French-speaking society, including the changing nature of the family, cyber society and voluntary work. Unit 2.1 concentrates on heritage and tourism, contemporary music, festivals and cinema. Year 13 focuses in unit 1.2 on ethnicity and diversity, criminals in society and those who are marginalized and in unit 2.2 on the right to vote, strikes and demonstrations and immigration.
You also study a book and a French film across the two years.
You could continue to study French to degree level. More and more, French is being combined with other subjects like law or business.
“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.”