French Studies

High School Background Required
Life After Graduation
Certificate of Competence in French Language
First Year Requirements
Further Information

One of the world's global languages, French is spoken or understood by 200 million people, and is the most frequently taught second language after English. It is one of Canada's two official languages, and an essential prerequisite for work in the federal context.

The Department of French Studies aims to help students to develop a high degree of competence in the French language, both written and spoken, starting from the various levels they have achieved before entering university. Those who complete a concentration in French study both language and literature, with the possibility of adding courses in linguistics.

At Queen's you may choose from a variety of courses dealing with oral and written French, literature and culture of France, Québec and francophone countries, linguistics, and business French. Along with well-known authors like Molière, Hugo, Flaubert, Camus, and Roy, courses deal with novels, theatre, music and poetry representing many countries and philosophical perspectives.

Classes are small, with a strong emphasis on student-faculty interaction, use of multimedia materials, and extracurricular activities such as book and film clubs and organized trips. Opportunities are provided for study or work in a francophone context either in Québec or Europe, through academic exchanges, work study programs, or internships.

For the first year, courses are offered at two levels for those aiming at a degree in French (100 and 110). French and French-Canadian language and literature are studied. Particularly advanced students may begin at the second year level with a specialized course in French literature (212).Those selecting French courses as electives may start at a lower level, taking 0-level courses. Of these, 010 aims at all-round competence, and the other 0-level courses concentrate on oral-aural skills.

French-Canadian as well as French language, literature and culture are represented in first and second year courses. Students in second, third and fourth year may select courses which concentrate on these aspects of French Studies. Linguistics may be added.

Many of our students spend their third year either in France or in Québec. Faculty members and returning fourth-year students help those leaving plan for a year away which provides rich linguistic and cultural experience at a cost which the majority find acceptable.

Fourth year courses are designed to perfect linguistic mastery as well as literature of the francophone world and to provide the opportunity to develop advanced research skills in the discipline areas of most interest to the individual student. Students can use French courses toward the completion of an International Studies Certificate.

High School Background Required

Courses in French are available for all levels from beginners to advanced, but students wishing to take a major or medial concentration in French Studies should have Grade 12 French or a recognized equivalent

Life After Graduation

  • Teaching/graduate studies/research
  • Translation
  • Journalism/publishing
  • Foreign service

Certificate of Competence in French Language

  • Available to student who are not taking a concentration in French but have taken certain courses in French at Queen’s
    • Two main levels:
      • Intermediate Level: 3.0 courses in French (1.0 may be from the list of Culture and Communication course and the other 2.0 at the 100-level or above)
      • Advanced Level: 5.0 courses in French (1.0 may be from the list of Culture and Communication courses and the other 4.0 at the 100 level or above)
    • for both levels, students must complete a written/oral examination at the end of the Winter term
  • Application for the Certificate should be received by the Department of French Studies at least one month before the last day of classes

First Year Requirements

Go to Choose Your First Year Courses for more information

Further Information

French Studies Home Web Page
Phone: (613) 533-2090
Fax: (613) 533-6522

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