Envol: upper intermediate French
This module builds on Ouverture: intermediate French (L120), or equivalent knowledge. It will enhance your cultural knowledge and develop the skills needed to study at a higher level, as well as your practical language skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing. By studying a variety of authentic audio, video and printed materials from French-speaking countries, you will learn how to communicate in situations ranging from everyday conversation to putting forward your point of view in a debate. You will also improve your command of grammar, pronunciation and vocabulary acquisition. A compulsory residential school takes place in France (or you can study an online alternative, subject to University approval).
What you will study
The module draws on a wide range of interactive audio-visual, web-based and printed material. It is structured around themes, each covering a different aspect of life in French-speaking countries today. You will be working with print-based materials as well as practising listening and speaking with video footage and audio interviews. A range of online activities on the module website gives you access to authentic materials from French-speaking countries and fosters your ICT and communication skills. The topics have been selected to provide opportunities for comparison with your own experience.
The themes covered in the module are:
- prendre le temps de vivre (lifestyle)
- habitat (habitat)
- expression artistique (culture)
- gérer l’environnement (environment)
- affaires publiques (local politics)
- science et technologie (science and technology).
There is a reading and writing book, Cours d’écriture, which comprises a continuation of texts and activities incorporating suggested and model answers. It develops your writing skills in particular, but also addresses other skills concerned with comprehension, analysis and manipulation of texts – for example, summarising, expressing opinion on written passages, style and register, appreciation and accuracy.
The module is lively and varied, with a wide range of mixed-media material that has been selected in order to build up your confidence in the different language skills. The structure of the materials allows you to evaluate your progress regularly and provides confidence-building strategies to improve your learning skills. The materials are interactive and encourage your participation.
This module is designed to enable you to achieve a level of language proficiency equivalent to level B2 of the Council of Europe Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.
The Chartered Institute of Marketing now recognises this module under their Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programme.
There are no formal entry requirements to study this module.
However, as this is an OU level 2 module, you’ll need an appropriate knowledge of French obtained through any of the following:
- French studies 1: language and culture of the French-speaking world (L112)
- Ouverture: intermediate French (L120) – now discontinued
- equivalent French knowledge
If you’re not sure you’re ready, talk to an adviser.
Anything you can do to keep practising your French will be helpful, for example:
- redoing some of the activities in L112 (or L120)
- watching and listening to the L112 (or L120) audio and video materials
- listening to French radio broadcasts
- accessing authentic resources online
- borrowing French books and films from the local library
- reading a French newspaper
Books and a dedicated website with access to a range of electronic tools including real-time conferencing and asynchronous tools such as forums. As a registered language student you will have automatic access to an online forum where you can talk to fellow students over the internet. This will be linked directly from the website.
You will need
In addition to the set books shown below, you will need a headset with a microphone and earphones to take part in online tutorials, record spoken TMAs and complete speaking activities.
A computing device with a browser and broadband internet access is required for this module. Any modern browser will be suitable for most computer activities. Functionality may be limited on mobile devices.
Any additional software will be provided, or is generally freely available. However, some activities may have more specific requirements. For this reason, you will need to be able to install and run additional software on a device that meets the requirements below.
A desktop or laptop computer with either:
- Windows 7 or higher
- macOS 10.7 or higher
The screen of the device must have a resolution of at least 1024 pixels horizontally and 768 pixels vertically.
To participate in our online-discussion area you will need both a microphone and speakers/headphones.
Our Skills for OU study website has further information including computing skills for study, computer security, acquiring a computer and Microsoft software offers for students.
Materials to buy
- Fournier, I. French Grammar (BBC Active) Pearson Education £6.99 - ISBN 9780563519546
- Collins Robert French Dictionary (10th edn) Collins £40.00 - ISBN 9780007556526
Note: Students could use any other dictionaries or French grammar.