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French Language & Cultures: Proficient - LAN00008H

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  • Department: Language and Linguistic Science
  • Module co-ordinator: Ms. Geraldine Enjelvin
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25

Module summary

This module combines an in-depth study of French with analysis of cultural and social phenomena. Students will develop knowledge, skills and strategies necessary to communicate in French at proficient level through engagement with topics such as the (recent) debates surrounding the legacy of the colonial past(s), and its impact on contemporary societies and culture(s) (especially France and Belgium).

Related modules

Pre-requisite module

French Language and Cultures: Advanced (or equivalent level of language proficiency).

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2024-25

Module aims

This module aims at refining students’ knowledge, skills and strategies necessary to communicate in French, and to develop a plurilingual and pluricultural communicative competence at proficient level.

The module covers a variety of sources in French and English about contemporary cultural and social issues in French-speaking countries, and related diasporic communities.

Particular emphasis will be given to developing students' ability to research, analyse, present, and synthesise sources from critical perspectives using a range of sophisticated language structures accurately. Students will also receive training in presentation skills.

The module is taught and assessed in French.

Students will engage, individually and in groups, in communicative activities focussing on three modes of communication:

  1. reception activities (oral, audio-video and reading comprehension);

  2. production activities (oral and written production);

  3. interaction (oral, written and online interaction).

Module learning outcomes

Upon satisfactory completion of the course, students should be able to:

  • understand a wide range of long and complex written, audiovisual and digital texts, and media, appreciating subtle distinctions of style and implicit as well as explicit meaning;

  • produce clear, eloquent, smoothly flowing, complex texts in an appropriate and effective style and a logical structure, demonstrating a good command of idiomatic expressions and colloquialisms;

  • set out multiple perspectives on complex topics, clearly distinguishing their own ideas and opinions from those in the sources;

  • present complex information concisely to a live audience for a variety of purposes;

  • be aware of cultural differences and make subtle adjustments in order to navigate diverse cultural contexts.

Module content

Decolonisation was not over with the independence of former colonies.

After decades in which difficult colonial memories were either interiorised or swept under official carpets (official amnesia), historians, journalists and academics in many countries have pointed to the past (but also ongoing) dismal records of former imperial rulers. The resulting debate has led to an altered public and official engagement with the imperial past.

Thus, the content of the module focuses on the legacy of the colonial past(s), such as the (ongoing) process of decolonising history, memories, the curriculum, cultural/public space(s) and minds (especially France and Belgium).

As a result, the module will explore the evolving, related notions of identity/ identities.

Hence, students will be introduced to questions such as:

  • colonial exhibitions in Europe (posters and human zoos)

  • the Algerian war (1954-62) (including the Harkis and the 17 October 1961)

  • La Réunion's stolen children (1962-1984)

  • Guadeloupe’s colonial past and its legacy

  • Belgium’s colonial past and its legacy

  • France & Belgium: a successful decolonising process?


Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
French Language & Cultures: Proficient
3 hours 50
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
Oral Exam
0.33 hours 50

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
French Language & Cultures: Proficient
3 hours 50
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
Oral Exam
0.33 hours 50

Module feedback

Formative assessment and feedback

Formative tasks completed individually and/or in groups throughout the module.

Feedback will include

  • written comments (feedback as well as feed-forward);

  • oral feedback/feed-forward during class discussions.

Summative assessment and feedback

Students will be given written feedback and marks for their work within the University mandated schedule.

Indicative reading

Course materials and guided readings will be provided by the module convenor via the VLE.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.