Language courses are for serious linguists and not for the fainthearted. They require students who are determined to learn new vocabulary and grammatical items on a daily basis and who have a passion for the language.
You need to be an excellent communicator and not afraid of giving your own opinions and justifying them. If you are interested in other countries and cultures and want to manipulate the target language effectively so that you are understood, then you will enjoy the necessary hard work and commitment a language course demands.
A Level French
Students study technological and social change, looking at diversity and the benefits it brings. They will study highlights of the artistic culture of France, including music and cinema, and learn about political engagement in the countries where the language is spoken.
Students also explore the influence of the past on present-day communities. Throughout their studies, they will learn the language in the context of the country and the issues and influences which have shaped them. Students will study texts and film and have the opportunity to carry out independent research on an area of their choice.
Assessment tasks will be varied and cover listening, reading , speaking and writing skills.
The content includes:
- Aspects of French society: current trends and issues
- Artistic culture in the French-speaking world
- Aspects of political life in the French-speaking world
- Individual research project (based on a sub-topic of one of the above topics)
- One text and one film or two texts
The assessment is in three exams:
Paper 1 Listening, reading and writing
2 1/2 hours 40% of A level
Paper 2 Writing and grammar
2 hours 30% of A level
Paper 3 Speaking
23 minutes 30% of A level
How the course is delivered
Most of your lessons will be delivered in French and half of them will take place in the language laboratory where online resources are often used.
As well as 4×70 minutes lessons with your specialist teacher, you will have a 30 minute session with the Foreign Language Assistant each week. Topic booklets/handouts based on the AQA recommended texts and materials, are issued throughout the course to every student.
The MFL Department at Wyke Sixth Form College
The MFL department at Wyke College offers A Level courses in French, German and Spanish. The department consists of three experienced language specialists, one for each of the languages offered, and three Foreign Language Assistants, who are all native speakers. The six staff work closely together to provide a vibrant, fast-paced linguistic experience in a welcoming and reassuring environment.
There are two main teaching rooms for languages, and half of the lessons on each course take place in the language laboratory, where listening skills are developed and exam-type exercises are provided through the online resource ‘kerboodle’.
As a department we all agree that the best way to learn a language is to immerse yourself in it. Living in the country of the language you are studying would be ideal, but the next best thing is to travel abroad. We encourage you to take part in cultural opportunities offered. In recent years, our language department have taken part in foreign exchange programmes and cultural visits to Belgium, Spain and Germany.
What can I do now that would help prepare me for this course?
You must have exposure to the target language wherever possible. If you get the opportunity to travel abroad or talk to people from French speaking countries, take it.
Watch films or listen to music in the target language, read newspapers, magazines, books and websites and look at the BBC language courses online. Vocabulary and grammar are vital, so learn little and often, and really try to develop the habit of language learning.
Ensure you know the key verbs, such as ‘to have’ and ‘to be’ and the forms of these and other common verbs in the present, perfect and future tenses. Use www.languagesonline.org to practise.
Make for yourself a list of 20 expression phrases e.g. In my opinion, I think, I’m not convinced and so on and learn them, so they can be used when you give your views on any topic.
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