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The Department of Modern Languages offers a major and a minor in French.
The major in French entails a profound study of the language, history, culture, literature, and film of the French-speaking world. All elementary through advanced-level classes are designed to progressively develop students' oral and written proficiency and cultural competence, and are conducted exclusively in the target language. Students of French develop a complex understanding of how French culture has evolved in France and French speaking countries all over the world, including in Africa, the Americas, the Caribbean, Asia, and the South Pacific. Thematically cohesive courses in composition and conversation equip students with advanced communication skills that can be used effectively in academic, social, and professional contexts.
Study abroad is encouraged and many students fulfill requirements for the French major in two-week to one-year long individual exchanges, professor-led courses abroad, and at university approved consortium sites. French faculty lead short-term Ambassador study abroad programs to Paris, Normandy, Bordeaux, and Quebec. Popular summer-, semester-, and year-long destinations offered through USAC, ISA, the Ohio Consortium, and direct exchange programs include cities in France (Angers, Lyon, Pau, Strasbourg), Canada, and Luxembourg.
Learning any foreign language helps students think creatively by exposing them to new ways of conceiving the world and by sensitizing them to the nuances of culture and communication. These skills are highly desirable in today's globally dynamic marketplace. The French major is particularly useful for students wishing to enter globally oriented careers in the arts and the performing arts, the hospitality and travel industry, business, education, creative writing, international development, government, law, communications, linguistics, medical professions, motion pictures, philosophy, psychology, translation, and interpretation.
Those students who qualify for departmental honors may prepare an in-depth project focusing on an area of expertise, including creative writing, translations, film projects, projects involving service to the Dayton area French-speaking community, and service to local schools, museums, or charitable organizations. Internships are available to students with senior status and serve as the culminating experience using French language skills in a real-life setting. Extracurricular opportunities that may lead to career placement include work as tutors, supplemental instruction leaders, first-year programs peer instructors, and French club officers.
Graduate Teaching Preparation Program:
Students who wish to teach French in Ohio public schools earn the Bachelor of Arts degree in French. A sequence of education courses and school placements are required during the bachelor's degree.
Majors are encouraged to contact faculty for a mock Oral Proficiency Interview required of teaching candidates prior to the completion of their undergraduate degree.
Candidates must meet with a College of Education and Human Services Licensure advisor early in the bachelor's degree program to learn how to apply for school placements, deadlines, admission details and other important information.
Upon completion of the bachelor's degree, candidates must complete the graduate teacher preparation program through the College of Education and Human Services.
Requirements for admission to the graduate teaching preparation program include a cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 2.7 or higher, C or better grades in all undergraduate content courses, admission testing, reference forms, writing sample and other application materials. Admissions interviews may be required.
Merit-based scholarships are available.
Program completers with passing scores on state mandated exams and a clear background check, may apply for the Multi-Age License through the Ohio Department of Education.
Program Learning Outcomes:
- Be able to understand, speak, read and write French at an "Intermediate High / Advanced Low" level as defined by the proficiency criteria of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.
- Understand and respect cultural differences leading to effective interaction within a French-speaking society and in any culturally complex situation.
- Build a strong foundation in the geography, history and literary tradition of the French-speaking world.
- Understand the impact France and French culture and language have had and continue to have on other cultures.
- Develop strong analytical and critical thinking skills.
Undergraduate Language Requirement, College of Liberal Arts:
French majors will have met their language requirement for the Bachelor of Arts by completing requirements for the major.
Students with no French background will begin with FR 1010 ; those who have studied French previously or who are heritage speakers will take a placement test to determine the best course for their skill level. Native or near-native French speakers are encouraged to take a proficiency test in oral and written French to verify placement. Details about the placement test and proficiency test for prior learning assessment are available on the Modern Languages website.
Prior Learning Assessment:
The Department of Modern Languages believes that students having learned French in high school, through living abroad, or by any other means have the right to earn prior learning credit in French. Those students who place into French classes between the 1010 and 2020 levels and attain a grade of C or better, may earn "Pass" credits for sequenced courses below that level. Students who have placed into a 3000- or 4000-level course may earn "Pass" credits for 1010 through 2020. By the ninth week of the semester, students desiring prior learning assessment should request and complete their PLA form at the Department of Modern Languages.
Native and near-native speakers of French may take the French language proficiency test in two areas, Conversation and/or Composition, and receive Prior Learning Assessment "Pass" credits for FR 3110 and/or FR 3210. Important note: Students may not receive PLA credit for both upper level (FR 3110 and FR 3210) and lower level courses (FR 1010, FR 1020, FR 2010 and FR 2020).Students who opt to receive PLA credit for 3000-level courses may take a CLEP test in order to receive credit for 1000- & 2000-level courses.
See the Modern Languages website for details, including fees.
For additional information: