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French

French A level is a fascinating mix of the culture, society and language of France. It provides an opportunity for you to improve your ability to write, understand and speak French at a high level.
What is French?

A level French is a fascinating mix of the culture, society and language of France. It provides an opportunity for you to improve your ability to write, understand and speak French at a high level. The course focuses primarily on language skills and aims to enable you to discuss and write about a range of issues from youth culture (fashion, music, etc.) right through to the environment and social issues. This combination of being able to acquire sophisticated linguistic skills while at the same time studying books by famous French-speaking writers such as Albert Camus or even the recently successful Delphine de Vigan or the production of the film ‘Untouchables’, makes French A level enormously stimulating and challenging, both on a personal and academic level. After studying A-Level French you will come away with a skill which will enormously enrich your life as well enhance your employability post-university.

What is French at DLD?

The French department makes use of a wide range of resources including podcasts, films, magazines and assorted subject-specific web sites. Lesson time is divided into a variety of ways to meet the exam requirements – class discussions and oral practice, individual research-based study based on a list of classic films and books and ‘traditional’ teaching of grammar and translation with plenty of question and answer work. There are regular tests to help you monitor your own progress but also to help you overcome the difficulty of organising the vocabulary and verbs that need learning. The aim is to provide a full, dynamic and highly enjoyable programme of work.

How is it assessed?

Legacy papers until June 2017
 

Weighting Format
Unit 1 15% (30%) Oral
Unit 2 35% (70%) 2 Hour 30 Minute Exam
Unit 3 17.5% Oral
Unit 4 32.5% 2 Hour 30 MinuteExam

 
Weighting format of French AS (Starts 2016, first assessment summer 2017)
 

Paper 1: Listening, reading and translation 40% Written exam 1 hours 30 minutes
Paper 2: Written response to works and translation 30% Written exam 2 hours 40 minutes
Paper 3: Speaking 30% Oral 21-23 minutes (includes a single period of 5 minutes formal presentation time).

 
Weighting format of French A level (Starts September 2017, first assessment summer 2018)
 

Paper 1: Listening, reading and translation 40% Written exam 1 hours 30 minutes
Paper 2: Written response to works and translation 30% Written exam 2 hours 40 minutes
Paper 3: Speaking 30% Oral 21-23 minutes (includes 5 minutes preparation time for Task 1).

 

Exam Board: ED

What do I need?

It is vitally important that you enjoy the subject. This is much more than just enjoying being in Paris or watching the odd French film. Be prepared to learn a lot of vocabulary and do a great deal of written work. It is essential that students love being around language and that they get a kick out of learning how to write, say new things and think new thoughts in a new language.

Good subject combinations

Languages are universally useful. They are often chosen by students who are studying other humanities subjects such as English or History, but equally Mathematicians and scientists often study a language too. Any subject fits.

After DLD

One of the enormous advantages of studying a language is how it is always a treasured and useful skill in any arena. Students may go on to study languages at degree level either as single honours or combined with subjects as diverse as Philosophy, Business Studies and Psychology. Often students pick up a new language at university. Language graduates go on to pursue careers in business, investment banking, medicine, law, the media and teaching. They have skills which set them apart from other graduates, enabling them to pursue a wide variety of occupations and opening up a number of different career paths.

Questions

Q: When do I have to decide about taking the AS or the full A-Level?
A: Students can take the AS in their first and then transfer to the full A-Level for the second year.
 
Q: What if I am doing the legacy paper? Can I retake AS units in my A2 year?
A: Yes, students will be given the opportunity to retake AS units in their second year in order to improve their overall grade.

Entry Requirements for international students

To study A Levels, your current or pending exam results should be equivalent to or higher than GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) in at least 5 subjects and a minimum level of English equivalent to IELTS 5.0.
 
At the start of each academic year of study students following an A-Level course without a pass at grade C in GCSE or IGCSE English Language or with an Academic English score below 6.5 overall must join an Academic English training course for the duration of the academic year which will be timetabled alongside A-Level lessons.
 
If your level of English is not sufficient to meet the entry criteria for the A-Level programme you will normally be offered a place on the Abbey DLD Colleges One Year Pre-sessional (Pre A-Level) in order to bring your English skills up to the required level.

“I really enjoy my French lessons as they are well organised and enjoyable. We learn about the grammar and vocabulary through different activities.”

Carola Sabbadini, Current DLD student

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