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French A Level (Block A) at Walton High School

Course description

Enabling students to develop and build on the skills acquired at GCSE whilst developing a greater focus on and inspiring curiosity about countries and communities where the target language is spoken.  Students will use increasingly accurate and complex French and will be encouraged to stretch and challenge themselves. 

There is a sound basis for further study of French at degree level or equivalent, also enhancing employment prospects and facilitating foreign travel. Students continuing their language studies at higher education will benefit from the film and literature focus. 

A level is a two-year linear course. All exams and certification will take place at the end of year 2. A level includes an independent research topic for speaking. AS and A level students will do translations to and from the target language. A level students will study one book, plus a film or a second book. 

Course content

At AS and A level, students will study:

1. Aspects of French-speaking society: current trends: The changing nature of family, cyber society, the place of voluntary work

2. Artistic culture in the French –speaking world: A culture proud of its heritage, contemporary Francophone music, cinema- the 7th art form.

At A Level, students will study:

1. Aspects of French-speaking society: current issues: Positive features of a diverse society, life for the marginalised, how criminals are treated. 

2. Aspects of political life in the French-speaking world: Teenagers, the right to vote and political commitment, demonstrations, strikes- who holds the power?

Grammar:

  • AS and A Level students will study the grammatical system and the structure of the language. The end of course exams will test their use of accurate grammar and structures appropriate to the task, drawing from the lists in the specification.

Works:

  • AS: students study one book or one film from the lists in the specification.
  • A level: Students study two books or one book and one film from the lists in the specification.

Individual research topic:

  • A level only: Students conduct individual research on a subject of personal interest, relating to the country or countries where the language of study is spoken.

 A level includes an independent research topic for speaking. AS and A level students will do translations to and from the target language. A level students will study one book, plus a film or a second book. 

Currently there is an opportunity for Year 13 students of French to carry out work experience in Limoges, France.  This is organised jointly with other Staffordshire schools.

Entry requirements

The A Level course is available to students with an A*, A or B at GCSE.  In order to start the course, students will need to have taken Higher-level papers during their GCSE course.

Assessment

All exams and certification will take place at the end of year 2.

Paper 1: Listening and responding, Reading and responding and translation into English and French; 2hours 30 minutes; 40% of A level

Paper 2: Two books or one book and film-written exam; 2 hours; 30% of A Level

Paper 3: Speaking- Individual research project and knowledge of one of four sub themes. Oral exam: 21-23 minutes (including 5 minutes preparation time). 30% of A level. Assessments will be conducted by the school.

Future opportunities

An A Level in one or more foreign languages will certainly enhance employment opportunities, and open up a wider choice of degree courses for the student.

This course will prepare students for life in a world in which communication with other countries is of increasing significance and where young people will need to compete in the job market with their peers from other countries who will undoubtedly be multilingual.

In recent years some A Level students have gone on to study:

  • Marketing
  • International Law
  • Aeronautics
  • Journalism
  • Chemistry

Some of these courses have been combined with a language; others have included subsidiary language modules.  We would particularly urge students who are hoping to embark on a career in business, the sciences, engineering and technology, marketing or law to consider taking a language at A level.

Further information

The nature of French makes it an ideal vehicle to assist candidates to develop their knowledge and understanding of the transferable skills.  Students will equip themselves with transferable skills such as autonomy, resourcefulness, creativity, critical thinking and linguistic, cultural and cognitive flexibility that will enable them to proceed to further study or employment.

Students will develop control of the language system to convey meaning, using spoken and written skills, including an extended range of vocabulary, for both practical and intellectual purposes as increasingly confident and independent users of the language.

Subject Choices:

Please select one subject per option block (A, B, C, D and E - listed in Course Title) to ensure there is no clash on your timetable.

By and large most students will follow 3 academic A Levels plus will have the opportunity to add to this with the Extended Project and our Enrichment Programme.

A few students may be able to follow a 4th A Level with advice from our Sixth Form Management team.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Walton High School directly.

Last updated date: 05 January 2017
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