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French AS/A Level ( AQA ) at Allerton High School

Course description

Did you know that 94% of the world's population does not speak English as a first language and that 75% of the world's population does not speak any English at all? We live in a multilingual world and UK companies are now realising that they need foreign languages to compete when trading internationally. Gaining a qualification in a modern foreign language will put you ahead of the field in the eyes of employers and universities, whatever your future career may be. In fact, you can expect to earn 20% more if you have skills in a foreign language! Studying a modern foreign language also develops a wide variety of skills which are transferable to other areas of life, for example oral and written communication, textual analysis, expressing and defending a point of view.

Course content

Paper 1: Listening, Reading and Writing (50%)

All questions are answered non-verbally or in French. Authentic material from a range of contexts is used, including complex factual and abstract content.

Questions will target both gist and detail.

The paper includes translations both from and into the target language, each of approximately 100 words.

The listening recording is controlled by the student.

Dictionaries are not permitted.

The examination is 2 hrs 30 mins and is worth 50% of the total marks.

Paper 2: Writing (20%)

Students write two essays in French. One essay should be on a set literary text (from a prescribed list) and the other on either a set literary text or on a film, again from a set list.

Dictionaries are not permitted.

The examination is 2 hrs and is worth 20% of the total marks.

Paper 3: Speaking (30%)

Students discuss a sub-theme from a prescribed list based on a stimulus card. The card is given to the student for preparation 5 minutes before the start of the test. (5-6 mins)

Students then deliver a 2 minute presentation on an individual research project – prepared over the two-year course – and then discuss it with the examiner for up to 10 minutes.

Dictionaries are not permitted.

The examination is between 21 and 23 minutes and is worth 30% of the total marks.

Entry requirements

You should have achieved a minimum of 5 9-4 grades or equivalent at GCSE including English and Maths.  

In order to take this course, you will need to have studied French at GCSE level or equivalent. You will need a GCSE Grade 6 or above in French.


There is no coursework for A Level French, instead there are three examinations, all of which are taken in the summer term of the second year.  The examinations test your ability in all four skill areas – listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Future opportunities

You have a huge array of options open to you if you gain an advanced level qualification in French. Practically any job can involve languages, whether it is based in the UK or abroad. Here are some examples: credit controller; journalist; market researcher; recruitment consultant; management consultant; engineer; lawyer; business analyst; sales executive. Specialist language occupations include: interpreter; translator; language teacher; digital subtitler.

If you decide to continue on to university after Post 16, the good news is that you can combine the study of a language with almost any other subject. Here are some examples of subjects currently offered in combination with French at UK universities: Film Studies; Publishing and Media; Internet Computer Science; International Business; Aeronautical Engineering; Law; Design Management; Chemistry; Computer Forensics; Mathematics; Politics and International Relations; Fine Art; Accounting; Global Marketing; Peace Studies; International Tourism Management; Hospitality Management; ....the list goes on and on!

It may be that when the UK leaves the European Union there will be more work for linguists since the UK will still need to trade with other European nations and yet English will no longer be the lingua franca of the EU.

Further information

For further information please contact Mrs Coronil-Hunter/Miss Crudden at Allerton High School on 0113 2034770.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 07 November 2018
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 Years
  • Number of planned places: 25

Contact details

    • Contact name:
    • Mr B Harding
    • Contact telephone number:
    • 0113 2034770