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Modern Foreign Languages A Level (French, German & Spanish) at The Henrietta Barnett School

Course description

The new and exciting A level course is examined at the end of a two year course of study. The topics covered are of far greater intrinsic interest than GCSE and previous A Level specifications, and you will be as fluent in the language(s) as you can be by the end of the course without having lived in the country or countries. There is something for all students to explore and enjoy, topics that are much more developed and mature in nature. You will gain a very good insight into many aspects of the target language culture including its History, society, politics, film and literature. Each country has its own specific culture, so textbooks highlight many of these. This means the students studying two languages have different course content. The general topics are social issues and trends, political life and issues, and the study of either two literary texts or one film and one literary text. There are also translations into and out of the language which will be practised throughout the course. You will also carry out an Individual Research Project of any aspect of the target language culture that interests you. This will be discussed as part of the speaking test at the end of the two year course, and is a very exciting addition to A Level, as it will prepare you better for university study. You will have the opportunity to go on conferences, to the theatre and cinema, departmental trips, as well as inter-school debating competitions and other language competitions.

Rapid vocabulary building and embedding GCSE grammar in different contexts. New grammar will enlarge and improve language skills immeasurably. Group work: role-play, solving problems, prioritising. Making presentations to the class. Working from video clips and actual target language news from the internet. Improvising and debating. Interpreting and translating. Research and wider reading in the library and on the internet. Keeping up to date with current issues using the internet and through purchased or online press.

Course content

The target language will be spoken in the classroom. You will have a dedicated lesson in small groups with a native speaker, who will be working with you from October to May. This extra weekly lesson will Improve your spoken fluency hugely in a relaxed and mutually-supportive setting.

Entry requirements

For all applicants, both internal and external, the minimum requirement is: (a) At least six grades 7 or above at GCSE (grade A or above in unreformed GCSEs) (b) At least a grade 6 in English Language and Mathematics, if these subjects are not being taken in the Sixth Form. (c) At least grade 7 (grade A or above in unreformed GCSEs) at GCSE in the subjects to be studied at A Level. For Further Mathematics an 8 or 9 (A* in the unreformed GCSE). sFor subjects not previously studied at GCSE, a grade 7 or above (grade A or above in unreformed GCSEs) in an equivalent subject will be required (please see the Sixth Form Information Booklet).


Assessment is by examination after two years of study. There will be an internal examination towards the end of Year 12. There is no coursework.

Future opportunities

Languages are an essential skill in many professions and regarded very favourably by all employers, as a linguist understands other cultures, having often lived in two countries, and is highly adaptable. Like many Arts subjects they are not necessarily vocational, apart from Interpreting, Translation or Teaching, but are extremely versatile to be used in any profession.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact The Henrietta Barnett School directly.

Last updated date: 19 December 2017
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    • By Public Transport

      The nearest Tube Station is Golders Green Station and is approximately a 15 minute walk. Golders Green Station is on the Edgware Branch of the Northern Line.

      By Road

      The school is located in the Hampstead Garden Suburb and is a few minutes drive from the A1 or A406.