Director of Undergraduate Studies: Prof. Sylvie Lefèvre, 516 Philosophy; 854-3905; email@example.com
Director of the Language Program: Dr. Pascale Hubert-Leibler, 519 Philosophy; 854-4819; firstname.lastname@example.org
Academic Department Administrator: Isabelle Chagnon, 515 Philosophy; 854-3208 or 854-2500; email@example.com
Departmental Office: 515 Philosophy; 854-3208 or 854-2500
Associates in Languages
The undergraduate major in French is intended to give students an in-depth familiarity with the language, culture, and literature of France and the French-speaking world. After completion of the four-semester language requirement students take courses in advanced grammar and composition and stylistics to refine their skills in reading, speaking, and writing French. They also undertake a comprehensive overview of the development of French literature from the Middle Ages to the present day in a required two-semester survey course. A wide choice of advanced elective courses on French literature, history, philosophy, and cinema allows students to explore a variety of intellectual interests, to perfect their critical reading skills, and to master the techniques of close reading. The capstone course of the major is the senior seminar, in which students study a range of texts and critical approaches and are encouraged to synthesize their learning in previous courses. The optional senior essay, written under the direction of a faculty member, or in an independent study during the student's stay at Reid Hall, provides students with an initiation to scholarly research. The senior essay is a requirement to be considered for departmental honors.
Students interested in French history and civilization, and in the literature and culture of the Francophone world, should consider the major in French and Francophone studies, also administered by the French Department.
FREN W1101-FREN W1102 and W1201-W1202. Entering students are placed, or exempted, on the basis of their College Board Achievement or Advanced Placement scores, or their scores on the placement test administered by the Center for Student Advising, 403 Lerner. An SAT score of 780 or a score of 4 on the AP exam satisfy the language requirement. The Barnard course, BC1204, Intermediate French II does not fulfill the undergraduate language requirement.
Elementary and intermediate French courses are designed to help students develop an active command of the language. In W1101 and W1102 the communicative approach is the main method of instruction. In addition to practicing all four language skills—listening, speaking, reading, and writing—students are introduced to the cultural features of diverse French-speaking communities. Intermediate courses, W1201 and W1202, develop further linguistic competence through the study of short stories, films, novels and plays. Upon completion of the four-semester language sequence, students are able to discuss and write in fairly proficient French on a variety of complex topics. At the third-year level attention is focused on more sophisticated use of language in grammar and composition courses and on literary, historical, and philosophical questions in literature courses. In French W3333 and W3334 the whole span of French literature is surveyed and students learn techniques for analyzing literature of different centuries, styles, and genres. After completion of these core courses, French majors are encouraged to follow their individual interests, and a wide range of language, literature, and cultural studies courses is available to them. Small classes and seminars allow for individual attention and enable students to work closely with faculty members.
Students looking for intensive oral practice in French may take one of the 2-point conversation courses offered at the intermediate and advanced levels. Conversation courses generally may not be counted toward completion of the major. The exception is the special 3-point advanced conversation course, French cultural workshop, offered in the fall semester which is designed to meet the needs of students planning study abroad at Reid Hall.
The department grants 3 credits for a score of 5 on the AP French Language exam, which satisfies the foreign language requirement. Credit is awarded upon successful completion of a 3000-level (or higher) course with a grade of B or higher. This course must be for at least 3 points of credit and be taught in French. Courses taught in English may not be used for language AP credit. The department grants 0 credits for a score of 4 on the AP French Language exam, but the foreign language requirement is satisfied. The department grants 3 credits for a score of 5 on the AP French Literature exam, which satisfies the foreign language requirement. Credit is awarded upon successful completion of a 3000-level (or higher) course with a grade of B or higher. This course must be for at least 3 points of credit and be taught in French. Courses taught in English may not be used for language AP credit. The department grants 0 credits for a score of 4 on the AP French Literature exam, but the foreign language requirement is satisfied.
Language laboratories located in 116B Lewisohn Hall and in the International Affairs Building provide opportunities for intensive practice in French pronunciation and aural comprehension. French courses typically make extensive use of on-line interactive materials that students can access from their own computer terminals.
Students interested in French should acquaint themselves with the Maison Française, which has a reading room containing French language newspapers, periodicals, books, and videos, and which sponsors lectures and discussions by distinguished French visitors to New York City. With its weekly French film series, book club, café-conversation and other events, the Maison Française offers an excellent opportunity for students to perfect their language skills and enhance their knowledge of French and Francophone culture in a variety of extracurricular activities that take place in a friendly, informal environment.
Because a direct experience of contemporary French society is an essential part of the program, French majors and concentrators are strongly encouraged to spend either a semester or a year at Reid Hall-Columbia University in Paris, or at another French/Francophone university. During their time abroad students take courses credited toward the French major, and in some cases also toward other majors (e.g. history, art history, political science).
Qualified students may apply to the Columbia/Institut d'études politiques de Paris (Sciences-Po) five-year BA/MA program. Students interested in this opportunity should speak to their undergraduate advisers and major adviser and contact the Office of Global Programs (OGP).
For a list of approved study abroad programs visit http://ogp.columbia.edu/programs/all.html.
Located at 4 rue de Chevreuse, Paris, Reid Hall is administered by Columbia University. It offers semester and year-long programs of study, as well as summer courses.
Most students who study at Reid Hall take courses offered in the French university system (e.g. at the Sorbonne, or Sciences Po) as well as core courses offered at Reid Hall. Students begin their stay at Reid Hall with a month-long French immersion program. In their first semester most students also take a course in academic writing in French that enables them to succeed at a high level in French university courses. Special Reid Hall opportunities include small joint seminars in which ten students from Reid Hall participate with ten French students in seminars devoted to topical issues.
For information on fall/spring study at Reid Hall see: http://ogp.columbia.edu/pages/noncolumbia_students/index.html
For summer study at Reid Hall see: http://ogp.columbia.edu/pages/noncolumbia_students/summer/paris/index.html
Students who wish to offer toward the major or concentration requirements a course in which a grade of D has been received must consult with the director of undergraduate studies.
Majors who wish to be considered for departmental honors should consult with the director of undergraduate studies. To be eligible for consideration, the student must have a grade point average of at least 3.7 in courses for the major and have completed an approved senior thesis under the guidance of a faculty member at Columbia or Reid Hall. Normally no more than 10 percent of the graduating majors in the department each year receive departmental honors.
The Department of French and Romance Philology awards the following prizes to students enrolled in French/ French and Francophone Studies courses: