French studies 2: language and culture of the French-speaking world
This module takes you to an upper intermediate level of competence in French, which is equivalent to level B2 level of the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference. You’ll further develop your cultural knowledge, and practical language skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and interacting in a variety of situations – ranging from everyday conversation to putting forward your point of view in a debate. You’ll also consolidate and further develop academic, digital and employability skills in French-speaking contexts. A residential school takes place in France, or an online alternative will be provided.
What you will study
This module further extends your language competence as well as enhancing your cultural knowledge and developing key skills necessary for studying at a higher level. The themes of the module cover different aspects of life in French-speaking countries today.
You’ll work with online materials, and study a variety of texts, and audio and video materials that will develop your reading, speaking, listening and writing skills. The activities provided will also develop your academic, digital, professional and intercultural skills in French-speaking contexts.
The module has six themes:
- Work and education
- Media and popular culture
- Individuals and institutions
- Social issues
Through each theme, you’ll gradually develop your knowledge and skills by:
- consolidating and expanding your knowledge of French vocabulary and grammar
- learning about and reflecting on language, culture and intercultural communication skills
- studying with audio recordings and videos that explore topical issues in French-speaking cultures and societies
- engaging in a wide variety of speaking and interactive activities
- practising translation to support your language learning
- consolidating and expanding your academic skills
- using digital tools and resources to support your language learning
- finding and using information from external sources
- working independently and in collaboration with others
- reviewing your personal goals and monitoring your progress using checklists and reflective questions.
The study materials provide confidence-building strategies to improve your learning skills. We’ve carefully structured these to equip you gradually with the key skills necessary for studying at a higher level.
There are no formal entry requirements to study this module.
However, as this is an OU level 2 module, you’ll need appropriate knowledge of French through any of the following:
- French studies 1 (intermediate) (L112)
- Ouverture: intermediate French (L120) – now discontinued
- French knowledge equivalent to the above
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:
- listening to French radio broadcasts and podcasts
- accessing authentic resources online
- checking out the language materials available in iTunes U
- borrowing French books and films from the local library
- reading a French newspaper
- redoing some of the activities in L112 (or L120)
- watching and listening to the L112 (or L120) audio and video materials.
You can also visit OpenLearn to explore the free materials available for French.
You'll have access to a module website, which includes:
- a week-by-week study planner
- course-specific module materials
- audio and video content
- access to the Open University online library that contains resources for French
- assessment details and submission section
- online tutorial access
- access to forums where you can communicate with your fellow students.
You'll also be provided with a printed grammar book.
You’ll need broadband internet access and a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of Windows (10 or 11), or macOS (10.15 or higher).
Any additional software will be provided or is generally freely available.
To join in spoken conversations in tutorials, we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).
Our module websites comply with web standards, and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.
Our OU Study mobile app will operate on all current, supported versions of Android and iOS. It’s not available on Kindle.
It’s also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook. However, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you’ll also require a desktop or laptop as described above.