Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Introduction to French Studies
Academic Year
Semester 1 (Taught over 2 semesters)
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 10 x 1 Hour Lectures


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Two essays of 1500 words. Only the better of the two marks will be taken for the continuous assessment element. This is to allow some assessment to be formative as well as (or instead of) summative. If a student fails to submit one piece of the two required, and does not supply the tutor concerned with valid reasons/evidence in writing, the mark for the one piece of work submitted will be carried forward as a continuous assessment mark, but divided by two. If no assessed work is submitted, the mark for the continuous assessment element (which will be fed into the overall module assessment) will be zero.  30%
Semester Assessment Independent research presentation, 15 minutes / Oral presentation   30%
Semester Exam 2 Hours   examination  40%
Supplementary Assessment Re-submit and/or resit all failed or missed elements  60%
Supplementary Exam 2 Hours   Resit the exam if failed or missed  40%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. show in-depth awareness of French language, history and culture
2. compile an effective bibliographical corpus for a given topic
3. read critically primary sources and scholarly works
4. write/present a clear and well-structured argument both orally and in essay writing
5. present independent ideas both in speech and in writing
6. use quotations, paraphrasing and reference systems following the established conventions


This module is a detailed introduction for students reading French: it is a core module for SH French, but available to other students studying French. The aim of this module is two-fold:
- to provide the necessary tools for students who will be working on essay writing and individual research projects, using research databases, on-line language resources, and bibliographic databases in French
- to provide an overview of French history and literature from the Middle Ages up to the early 20th century (later periods are covered by other modules such as FR12910 Images of France and the French component of EL10520 European film, as well as FR29110/FR39110 Ismes - Cultural and Artistic Movements in France, available in 2nd and Final Year, which is a continuation of this module)
Through a combination of lectures and tutorial sessions, the module will help students develop the study and research skills necessary to be successful during their UG studies, and provide skills and background for content modules and individual research projects (Extended Essay and Final Year SH Dissertation).

Brief description

This module will provide students a thorough grounding in French history and history of literature, as well as the necessary skills to write brief and extended pieces of work; to present a coherent argument, to organize and support their ideas, and the necessary techniques to communicate in French. Students will also be provided with the necessary skills to use on-line sources and archives proficiently within academic conventions. Students will gain confidence in time management, developing planning, analytical, interpretive, persuasive and critical skills. To achieve this goal this module will also teach students how to become a proficient reader when researching on a topic. Also central will be the use of databases and tips on how to source the best possible information both on language and content.


This module is delivered in the form of 1 x 1 hour class per week over two semesters.

Program outline:

Semester 1

Week 1: Resources for French language online and offline (KI)

Week 2: Bibliography: standards and databases (GG)

Week 3-5 Culture block 1: Middle Ages, Renaissance, Baroque (BS)

Week 6-7 Introduction to the techniques of essay writing (BS)

Week 8-10 Culture block 2: Classicism, crisis, Enlightenment (GG)

Semester 2

Week 1: Introduction to archival research

Week 2: Towards an independent project: group session

Week 3-5 Culture block 3: Revolution, Romanticism, Realism I (GG-BS)

Week 6: Tutorial consultation on progression of independent project

Week 7-9: Culture block 4: Realism II, Symbolism, Fin de Siecle (BS-GG)

Week 10: Independent project presentation

Skills developed:
- time management;
- assessment of essay topics;
- evaluation of essay titles;
- oral presentation skills
- development of ideas;
- planning and writing an introduction;
- assessing resources on-line;
- using bibliographical corpuses;
- effective reading;
- summarising and quotation;
- how to use referencing systems (in-text citation);
- avoiding plagiarism;
- using on-line language resources;
- using specialised monolingual dictionaries in French, printed and online

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Possible, if statistical methods used in the preparation of the oral presentation.
Communication Students will be able to communicate ideas and to practice presentation skills. Ahead of essay 2, they will present their research plan in a small group session
Improving own Learning and Performance Small group and 1-on-1 tutorials will provide the opportunity to discuss the students’ perception of own learning and of the development individual research skills.
Information Technology Students will have to use accurately proficiently on-line databases and research resources
Personal Development and Career planning Students will work independently, developing their written skills both in English and in the target language.
Problem solving This module is designed to confront the most common problems that all UG students will have to solve when studying French texts intellectually, to provide a detailed background for their further studies, and to equip them with a knowledge of the tools available to them.
Research skills To prepare for weekly classes, students will read and research a variety of topics and use sources to evaluate their benefits and disadvantages when writing essays or making oral presentations. They will also prepare specific exercises for the practical classes, enriching their literacy and comprehension.
Subject Specific Skills Inter-personal and communication skills; French language skills; knowledge of culture and diversity; on-line resources
Team work none


This module is at CQFW Level 4