BA French and Chinese / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

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Course description

BA French and Chinese provides a comprehensive grounding in French language, literature, culture, history and linguistics, enabling you to become proficient enough in French to live and work effectively in a French-speaking environment.

You will also develop a firm grounding in Mandarin Chinese and contemporary Chinese culture, society, economy and politics, as well as China's changing relations with the West.

French

  • At least two thirds of our staff are native speakers, teaching you in French `language' classes as well as most `culture' classes.
  • You will experience between 3 and 6 hours of French grammar and conversation every week (at post A-Level or beginners' level), in order to reach near-native precision and fluency. This will run in parallel with optional course units on French and Francophone history, politics, literature, popular culture and/or linguistics, from the Early Modern period to the present.
  • You will benefit from our long-established partnership with the Alliance Française de Manchester with cultural events throughout the year, such as film screenings, talks, plays, concerts, exhibitions and intensive language classes.
  • You will also benefit from our collaboration with the Institut de Touraine in the Loire Valley, which hosts Easter and Summer French language classes that are appropriate for ab initio students and finalists.
  • Our range and quality of courses are regularly cited for praise by external examiners and two colleagues have won University Teaching Excellence Awards.

  Chinese

  • You will study Mandarin Chinese throughout the course, enabling you to develop various linguistic skills such as speaking and writing accurately, understanding and analysing audio, video and written material, using different registers, speaking to a group with confidence, and translating with appropriate sensitivity.
  • At the same time, you can choose China-related topics in literature, film, cultural studies, politics, history, linguistics, economics, development studies, and business, drawing on the wide range of research expertise in Chinese Studies across the Faculty of Humanities.
  • You will benefit from our close links with the Confucius Institute, which fosters interaction between Manchester's large community of Chinese native speakers, our University students and representatives of the wider Chinese-speaking world.

Special features

Residence abroad

You can  study and/or work  for up to a year in a country or countries relevant to your chosen language(s) to improve your communicative language skills in a native-speaker environment.

Palaver Festival

Palaver Festival , a collaboration with the neighbouring Contact Theatre, offers the opportunity to explore links between language and performance across a range of genres including literature, theatre, dance and more.

Collaborations and partnerships

The University has links with language and cultural institutions across the city, including:

  • Instituto Cervantes - a centre for Spanish culture
  • HOME - international and contemporary art, theatre and film
  • Alliance Française - home of French language and culture.

Societies

The University is home to over 30 international and language-related  student societies  offering a breadth of cultural activities and experiences, including the Francophone Society, the Chinese Studies Society and Manchester University Chinese Students Society.

Teaching and learning

You'll learn through a mixture of formal lectures, seminars and tutorials, spending approximately 12 hours a week in formal study sessions.

We excel in using different forms of e-learning to enhance language acquisition, including podcasting.

For every hour of university study, you will be expected to complete a further 2-3 hours of independent study. You will also need to study during the holiday periods.

The individual study component could be spent reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working in the University's Language Centre.

Coursework and assessment

You will be assessed in various ways, including:

  • written and oral examinations;
  • presentations;
  • coursework (which may include library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection, or web-based research);
  • in your final year, a dissertation based on a research topic of your choice.

Assessment methods vary from course unit to course unit - see individual course unit listings for more information.

Course content for year 1

You will study 60 credits from each discipline.

The first year equips you with a range of important skills such as linguistic expertise, the ability to read and analyse material, skills in presentation, group work and independent language learning.

Course units are broad-based at this level and cover 350 years of key French events, people, ideas and cultural production.

In Chinese, you will study the core unit Introduction to Chinese Studies, plus Chinese language.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Introduction to Chinese Studies CHIN10050 20 Mandatory
Chinese Language 1 CHIN51011 20 Mandatory
Chinese Language 2 CHIN51022 20 Mandatory
French Cultural Studies FREN10070 20 Mandatory
Identity in Modern France FREN10150 20 Mandatory
French Language 1 FREN51011 20 Mandatory
French Language 2 FREN51022 20 Mandatory
French Language 3 FREN51030 20 Mandatory
Modern Chinese Literature and Cinema CHIN12122 20 Optional
Chinese Language 3 CHIN51031 20 Optional
Chinese Language 4 CHIN51042 20 Optional
Modern China: from the Opium Wars to the Olympic Games HIST10152 20 Optional
Introduction to Comparative Politics POLI10201 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 13 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

You may choose to study up to two thirds from either discipline or maintain equal weighting.

This year's core language course units develop those of the previous year and prepare you for the linguistic challenges of your year abroad, including dedicated sessions on writing CVs and cover letters for job applications in your chosen language(s).

French

The other course units available in your second year are options broadly falling under four categories: literature, history and politics, popular culture, and linguistics and translation. Topics covered include race and colonisation, cinema, literary representations of the 'tragic', and socio-linguistics.

All include a research component that encourages you to develop your skills of analysis and information-gathering, working independently or in a group.

Chinese

In addition to continuing your study in Chinese language, you will develop your studies of China via a choice of courses in areas across the Humanities faculty such as literature, film, history, religion, society, culture, economics, anthropology and business, as well as begin to prepare for residence abroad.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Chinese Language 3 CHIN51031 20 Mandatory
Chinese Language 4 CHIN51042 20 Mandatory
Chinese Language 5 CHIN51050 20 Mandatory
Chinese Language 6 CHIN51060 20 Mandatory
French Language 4 FREN51040 20 Mandatory
French Language 5 FREN51050 20 Mandatory
China's Borderlands: Culture, Ethnicity and History CHIN20061 20 Optional
Visual Cultures in China and East Asia CHIN22521 20 Optional
Introduction to Classical Chinese CHIN28572 20 Optional
Chinese Language 3 CHIN51031 20 Optional
Chinese Language 4 CHIN51042 20 Optional
French Cinema to 1980 FREN20142 20 Optional
Race and Empire in the French-speaking World FREN20561 20 Optional
Temptations of the Tragic: Love and Death in French Literature FREN20682 20 Optional
Late Imperial China: From the Jesuits to the East India Company HIST20422 20 Optional
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20291 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 16 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Your third year of study is  spent abroad  under approved conditions.

Course content for year 4

You may choose to divide your studies equally between both languages or study up to two thirds from either language.

You will continue with your core language course and choose additional units from a wide range of even more specialised course units, building effectively on Year 2 study.

Language study is centred on essay writing, translation and oral work involving discussion of texts, debates and presentations.

French

Also available in this year are course units that cover topics closely related to the research interests of individual members of staff (eg exoticism and travel writing; popular music; France and Algeria; Animal Studies).

As part of your final-year work, you can write a dissertation on a theme of your choice related to one of your courses, which students find an especially rewarding experience.

Chinese

You can select from various units from Chinese studies in religion, historical, cultural and social science areas.

The language teaching programme continues to develop skills such as reading and writing Chinese, and includes work on interpreting and on translation as practical skills.

Course units for year 4

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Languages-Based Project 1 CHIN38771 10 Mandatory
Language-Based Project 2 CHIN38772 10 Mandatory
Chinese Language 6 CHIN51060 20 Mandatory
Additional Chinese for Final Year Students CHIN51111 0 Mandatory
French Language 6 FREN51060 20 Mandatory
Dissertation in Chinese Studies CHIN30000 40 Optional
The Environment in Chinese Literature and Film CHIN30242 20 Optional
Socialism and Post-Socialism in China CHIN32012 20 Optional
Publishing and Print Media in Modern China CHIN35221 20 Optional
Business Chinese CHIN38682 20 Optional
Languages-Based Project 1 CHIN38771 10 Optional
Language-Based Project 2 CHIN38772 10 Optional
Chinese Language 5 CHIN51050 20 Optional
Additional Chinese for Final Year Students CHIN51111 0 Optional
Introduction to Interpreting: Context, Skills and Modes ELAN30242 20 Optional
Dissertation in French Studies FREN30000 40 Optional
Protest Music in France FREN30002 20 Optional
Dangerous Liaisons FREN30362 20 Optional
Exoticism & Orientalism in C19th France: French Romantics and Local Colour FREN30871 20 Optional
China & the West: From the Opium War to the Olympic Games HIST31201 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 20 course units for year 4

Scholarships and bursaries

Residence Abroad Support We offer dedicated financial support packages of up to £2,000 for residence abroad students, based on household income. You will be automatically assessed for this, based on your Student Finance finance assessment - you just need to make sure you apply for a financial assessment in the academic year in which your residence abroad will take place.

RWS Brode Scholarship You may be eligible for this scholarship if you fulfil the following conditions:

  • Your qualifications were achieved at a state-funded school in the UK
  • your total household income does not exceed £60K (as verified by the Student Loan Company)
  • You achieve high marks in your A-levels (or equivalent qualifications), usually AAB or above
  • You apply to (and remain on) either a single honours Language programme, or a dual-language programme

Awards will be made according to a sliding scale, benefitting those who have the achieved the highest marks, whilst being from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.  Again, you will be automatically assessed for this, after you have registered on your degree programme. You simply need to make sure you allow the University access to your records when applying for your Student Loan (we cannot otherwise assess your eligibility).

Facilities

As well as making use of the wider University library network, you will have access to the University Language Centre, a modern open learning facility where you can study independently and make use of a library and audio-visual resources. There are also language laboratories and multimedia facilities.

Learn more on the Facilities page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk