French Studies with International Experience (BA): 4-year, full-time

Year of entry

2018

Start date

October 2018

Location

Central London

Status

Fully Approved

UCAS Code

R101

Duration

Four years full-time, including one year of study abroad

Attendance

Three to four evenings a week, October to June

Learning a language opens a door to another culture. Raise your French language competence to near-native standard and gain the linguistic skills needed for efficient negotiation with French speakers, combined with a critical appreciation of the cultural values that lie at the heart of French life.

Learn about literature, thought and film, and French politics and society. Enhance your skills, including translating, summary-writing, and delivering written and oral presentations.

The third year is normally spent at a partner institution in France or a French-speaking country to allow you to develop your language skills and your knowledge of the culture.

This course is also available for full-time evening study over three years and part-time evening study over four or six years.

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Highlights

  • This course will enable you to become a proficient French speaker with a critical appreciation of the literature and film, culture and contemporary history of France and French-speaking countries.
  • Entry requirements are flexible and you can join the degree at various levels of competence in French.
  • Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 13th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2016-17 World University Subject Rankings.
  • Our Department of Cultures and Languages brings together research and teaching in French, German, Japanese, Portuguese and Spanish, making it an outstanding interdisciplinary department.
  • Ours is a community of scholars with shared interests in interdisciplinary topics and cross-cultural research. Our affiliated research centres, Birkbeck Research in Aesthetics of Kinship and Community (BRAKC) and the Birkbeck Eighteenth Century Research Group, provide an important platform for this exchange.
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Course structure

The programme consists of 12 modules of 30 credits each (or the equivalent including 15-credit modules), plus the year abroad which is worth 60 credits Accredited Prior Learning, making a total of 420 credits. The modules are divided into three levels: Level 4 (introductory), Level 5 (intermediate) and Level 6 (honours).

The structure of your degree will vary depending on your language starting level. In Years 1, 2 and 4 you will take 120 credits per year. If Year 3 (study abroad) is successfully completed you will be awarded 60 credits which is a requirement if you are to be awarded a degree ‘with International Experience’.

This programme offers a great deal of flexibility, particularly in relation to the option modules you are able to choose. A typical set of modules, divided by year, might look like this:

Read more about modules

Please note that not all modules are available every year; the list above is indicative.

  • Entry Requirements We welcome a wide range of qualifications, from the UK and abroad, and we will also consider your non-academic achievements.

    Entry requirements

    We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.

    You must normally have A-level/B2 (CEFR) competence, or the equivalent, in French to join this programme. This programme is also suitable for applicants at proficiency and native speaker level.

    UCAS tariff points 

    104, including A-level/B2 (CEFR) in French.

    The UCAS tariff system has changed for courses starting in September 2017 and is now calculated using a new number system. This means applicants applying for courses from October 2016 will see entry requirements and offers expressed using the new tariff.

    The UCAS tariff score is applicable to you if you have recently studied a qualification that has a UCAS tariff equivalence.

    Alternative entry routes

    We welcome applications from students on Access to Higher Education Diplomas.

    Admission is based on a written test and interview and a French language entry test (except for complete beginners).

    Credits gained on the Certificates of Higher Education in Culture and Language or French Studies can be counted towards the degree.

    International entry requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

    If you don’t meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Please be aware that you will initially be provided with a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) to study for the first two years of your course whilst at Birkbeck. During your third year of study at a European institution, you will be required to obtain a visa for that specific country. When you return to the UK to complete your fourth year, Birkbeck will issue you with a second CAS so that you can apply for another Tier 4 visa for your final year. You will therefore need to make a total of three visa applications: two for Birkbeck and one for the European institution.

    Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)

    If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.

    Find out more about credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL).

  • Fees We are committed to doing everything we can to help you finance your studies.

    Fees (2017/8)

    Full-time home/EU students: £ 9250 pa
    Full-time overseas students: £ 13000 pa

    Additional costs

    As well as fees, you should expect to pay other study-related expenses, for travel to and from College, books, stationery, etc. Birkbeck provides advice and financial support for students who experience hardship in meeting the travel costs of essential fieldwork or study visits.

    On this programme, you will also have to pay for the following additional costs.

    Students who spend an academic year studying abroad for at least 24 weeks will only be liable for 15% of their Birkbeck tuition fee for the year abroad. However, those who study for one term abroad will be charged the full programme fee.

  • Teaching and assessment Our innovative, engaging teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments.

    Teaching

    At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

    Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading.

    Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

    In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your Personal Tutor.

    Methods of teaching on this course

    Lectures and face-to-face teaching in small, informal groups. Language classes are predominantly interactive and taught by experienced native or near-native speakers. You will also make use of off-air TV recordings, the internet and a language laboratory.

    Timetables

    Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

    Indicative class size

    Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to large groups, with 30 to 100+ students in attendance, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups of 10 to 30 students, led by an academic.

    Academic support

    Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

    • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
    • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
    • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

    Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

    Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

    Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short– or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.

    Assessment

    Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations. You will be given time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

    Unseen written examinations are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June, and, in most cases, are held during the day on a weekday – if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance. Exam timetables are published online in March each year.

    Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

    Methods of assessment on this course

    For language module assessment, work done during the year counts in different proportions in different modules; written and oral examinations take place in May and June. All other modules are assessed by a combination of coursework essays and in-class tests.

    Feedback

    As well as a mark for your coursework and exams, you will also receive feedback from your marker(s) to help you learn, improve and succeed. We encourage you to discuss feedback with your module tutor.

    Feedback can come in different forms: notes via Moodle (our online learning environment); a paper copy of a completed feedback form; or in-class or face-to-face feedback. The College Policy on Feedback on Assessment sets out what you can expect from your feedback.

    Your department will usually provide you with your marked coursework within four weeks of submission. Your initial mark is provisional until the relevant Board of Examiners has confirmed it.

    Your official coursework and exam results will be made available to you via your My Birkbeck Profile online.

  • Careers and employability To help you get ahead in your career, we offer free advice and training and our recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, can connect you with employers.

    Careers and employability

    Graduates can pursue careers in international organisations or businesses, education, translation, research or journalism. This degree may also be useful in becoming a translator, secondary school teacher, social researcher or journalist.

    Find out more about the destinations of graduates in this subject.

    We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

    Graduate Destinations

    Go on to work and/or study:

    Go on to work and/or study
    Now working: 50%
    Doing further study: 25%
    Studying and working: 5%
    Unemployed: 10%
    Other: 15%

    Read more of the statistics for this course on the Unistats website.

  • How to apply Once you've found the course that's right for you, here's what to do next to get your place at Birkbeck.

    How to apply

    If you are applying for a four-year, full-time undergraduate degree at Birkbeck, you have to apply through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). To apply, go to the UCAS homepage and click on 'Apply and Track'. You will have to register, giving UCAS a few personal details, including your name, address and date of birth, and then you complete an application form.

    As part of the admission process you may be asked to complete a written test, a language entry test (except for complete beginners), and you may be asked to attend an interview.

    Birkbeck offers a range of free face-to-face advice and support to help you make a successful application.

    Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

    UCAS Code

    R101

    Application deadlines and interviews

    15 January is the first UCAS deadline and the majority of university applications through UCAS are made by then. We welcome applications outside of the UCAS deadlines, so you can still apply through UCAS after 15 January, depending on the availability of places. We also take late applications via the UCAS Clearing system in August.

    Read more about key dates for UCAS applicants.

    You will usually be expected to attend an interview.

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