BA French Studies

Year of entry: 2020

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Holding an offer for 2020 entry? Visit our dedicated offer-holders page.

Information for offer-holders

Overview

Degree awarded
BA
Duration
4 years
Typical A-level offer
ABB
Typical contextual A-level offer (what is this?)
BBB
Typical International Baccalaureate offer

34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply through UCAS

Course overview

  • Learn all about French language and culture, including literature, philosophy, history, visual and popular cultures, linguistics and translation.
  • Spend your third year studying and/or working abroad in France, Belgium, Switzerland, the French Caribbean or Québec.
  • Study at a university ranked in the top 10 in the UK for French (Complete University Guide 2020).
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French Studies

Open days

Our open days are a great opportunity for you to:

  • get a taste for campus life and the city more broadly;
  • find out about our subject areas and courses from current students and academic staff;
  • explore our facilities through self-guided and dedicated tours;
  • gain insight into your subject area through talks and taster sessions;
  • ask questions and gather all the additional information you need to help with your decision-making.

Find out more about our forthcoming open days , including how to register.

Fees

Tuition fees for home/EU students commencing their studies in September 2020 will be £9,250 per annum. Tuition fees for international students will be £19,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate finance pages.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Scholarships/sponsorships

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).

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Facsimile
+44 (0)161 275 3031
Email
Website
http://www.alc.manchester.ac.uk/
School/Faculty overview

See: About us

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Compare this course

Entry requirements

A-level

Grades ABB plus GCSE grade B/6 in a modern language

AS-level

AS level results are not considered as part of the standard admissions process at The University of Manchester.

Unit grade information

The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available.  Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application.  Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.

GCSE

Applicants must demonstrate a broad general education including acceptable levels of Literacy and Numeracy, equivalent to at least Grade C or 4 in GCSE/iGCSE English Language and Mathematics. GCSE/iGCSE English Literature will not be accepted in lieu of GCSE/iGCSE English Language.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

International Baccalaureate

34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see Accepted entry qualifications from your country

Scottish requirements

Before reading this, please consult the A-level requirements for this programme and note any subject requirements.

For applicants who have studied under the new Scottish qualification system, the following will apply.

For programmes which have no particular pre-requisite subject , we require the following (in all cases, at least three Highers should be achieved by the end of S5):

  • A*AA at A-level :  Hrs of AAAAAB or AAAB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • AAA at A-level   :  Hrs of AAAABB or AABB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • AAB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr Gr. A
  • ABB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr at min. Gr. B

Where pre-requisite subjects are cited in our A-level requirements , we require the following (in all cases, at least three Highers should be achieved by the end of S5 AND Grade A should be achieved at Adv Hr in the required subject):

  • A*AA at A-level : Hrs of AAA plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AA
  • AAA at A-level   : Hrs of AAB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AA
  • AAB at A-level   : Hrs of ABB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AB
  • ABB at A-level   : Hrs of BBB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs. AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs. AB

For applicants who have studied under the old Scottish qualification system , Highers are welcomed but will not be accepted alone.  The minimum requirement is three Advanced Highers, the grades of which will be the same as our stated A-level grades for the course in question.  Any subjects (or other qualifications) required for A-level will also be required for the Advanced Highers, at the equivalent grade.

All applicants must have achieved National 5 English at Grade B.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma/Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and usually requires two A Levels or equivalent to be included within this.

The minimum grade required will normally be the same as the lowest grade listed in the A Level entry requirements.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

European Baccalaureate

The University of Manchester welcomes applicants with the European Baccalaureate. Acceptable on its own or in combination with other qualifications, applications from students studying for this qualification are welcome and all applicants will be considered on an individual basis.

We normally require 77% to include a minimum of 8.0 in at least one essay-based subject.

AQA Baccalaureate

The University recognises the benefits of the AQA Baccalaureate and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills.

In making offers, the University will focus on the three A Levels taken within the AQA Baccalaureate. Students need to check the standard A Level requirements for their chosen course.

The units of broader study, enrichment activities and the Extended Project are considered to be valuable elements of the AQA Baccalaureate and we would therefore strongly encourage students to draw upon these experiences within their personal statement.

Pearson BTEC qualifications

We do not require you to have a Language A-level for this programme; however, applicants should have experience of studying a Language (any Modern Foreign Language) to at least GCSE level and should have achieved a good standard in this.  We therefore require all applicants to have achieved a minimum of GCSE Grade B/6 (or equivalent) in a Modern Foreign Language.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction / Merit.

BTEC Level 3 National Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction, plus one A-level at Grade B (preferably in either a Language or a Humanities subject).

BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma: we require a Distinction, plus one A-level at min. Grade B in an essay-based subject (such as English or History) plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

BTEC National Extended Certificate: we require a Distinction, plus two A-levels at Grades BB (one of these A-levels should preferably be in a Language or a Humanities subject).

OCR Cambridge Technical qualifications

We do not require you to have a Language A-level for this programme; however, applicants should have experience of studying a Language (any Modern Foreign Language) to at least GCSE level and should have achieved a good standard in this.   We therefore require all applicants to have achieved a minimum of GCSE Grade B/6 (or equivalent) in a Modern Foreign Language.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC): We consider the Technical Extended Diploma for entry.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Diploma with grades DDM.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC): Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Diploma with grades DM plus an A Level at grade A in a Language or an essay-based subject such as English or History.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC):  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Foundation Diploma with grades DD plus an A-level at min. Grade B in a Language or an essay-based subject (such as English or History) plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC):  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Certificate with grade D plus two A Levels at grades BB; at least one of these A-levels should be in a Language or an essay-based subject such as English or History.

Access to HE Diploma

We require a QAA-recognised Access to HE Diploma (a minimum of 60 credits overall with at least 45 at Level 3), with merit or distinction in a subject area relevant to the chosen course.

You should have a minimum of 30 credits with a Distinction grade, plus 15 credits with a Merit grade, all in a Humanities-related subject. 15 of the Distinction credits should be in the pre-requisite subject required for A-levels.

Applicants must also either have GCSEs in both English and Mathematics (at Grade B/6 or higher), or achievement at Level 2 (GCSE-equivalent) by, for example, having six credits each in English and Maths. You must also either have GCSE Grade C/4 or higher in English Language or any language, or be able to demonstrate achievement at Level 2 (GCSE-equivalent) by, for example, having six credits in English Language or any language at Level 2. We also consider other factors such as additional educational achievements, life experience and skills on an individual basis.

Cambridge Pre-U

We consider applicants offering Pre-U Principal Subjects, or a mix of Pre-U and A Level subjects, provided a minimum of three distinct subjects overall is taken.

Candidates taking Pre-U principal subjects in conjunction with A levels are expected to achieve a combination of D3, M2, M2 in the Pre-U and ABB at A level in three distinct subjects.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The University recognises the benefits of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. Although the Extended Project will not be included in the conditions of your offer, we strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement and at interview. A number of our academic Schools may also choose to take your performance in the EPQ into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

Core Maths

The University welcomes and recognises the value of Level 3 core mathematics qualifications (e.g. AQA Certificate in Mathematical Studies). 

Core Mathematics is not a compulsory element of post-16 study and as a result we will not normally include it in the conditions of any offer made to the student. However, if a student chooses to undertake a core mathematics qualification this may be taken into account when we consider their application, particularly for certain non-science courses with a distinct mathematical or statistical element.

We advise students to contact the academic School, who will clarify whether their specific portfolio of qualifications is acceptable for entry on to their chosen course.

Home-schooled applicants

If you are a student who has followed a non-standard educational route, e.g. you have been educated at home; your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course for which you are applying. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the specified academic entry requirements of the course. We will also require a reference from somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. If you are a home schooled student and would like further information or advice please contact the academic School for your chosen course who will be able to help you. 

Non-standard educational routes

Mature students are some of our most well-equipped learners, bringing skills and attributes gained from work, family and other life experiences.  Students come from a whole array of backgrounds, study every kind of course, undertake full-time and part-time learning and are motivated by career intentions as well as personal interest.  There is no such thing as a typical mature student at Manchester.  The application process is the same as for other prospective undergraduates.  If you require further clarification about the acceptability of the qualifications you hold please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.  Further information for mature students can be found here ( http://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/mature-students/ )

English language

All applicants to the University (from the UK and Overseas) are required to show evidence of English Language proficiency.  The minimum English Language requirement for this course is either:

  • GCSE English Language grade C  /  4, or;
  • IELTS 7.0, or;
  • An acceptable equivalent qualification.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of  our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications  or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires that every student from outside the UK and the EU must show evidence of a minimum level of English Language in order to be granted a UK visa (Tier 4 visa) to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level. This level is often referred to as the 'B2 level'.

Additionally, our individual Schools may ask for specific English Language proficiency levels that are necessary for their academic programmes. In most cases these requirements are likely to be higher than the B2 level. Further information about our English Language policy, including a list of some of the English Language qualifications we accept, can be found  here .

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

Advice to applicants

Mitigating Circumstances

Mitigating circumstances may be personal or family illness, other family circumstances, change of teachers during a course, problems with school facilities or an unusual curriculum followed by your school or college.  We recommend that information on mitigating circumstances that have affected or are likely to affect your academic performance should be included in the referee's report. 

We cannot usually take into account information that is supplied after an adverse decision has been made on an application by the admitting School.  If you encounter mitigating circumstances after you have submitted your application, please inform the admissions staff in the School to which you applied as soon as possible.

Where mitigating circumstances have already been taken into account, for example by the relevant Exam Board, we will not be able to make further allowances.

How your application is considered

You will be invited to an interview prior to an offer being made for this course.

Interview requirements

You will be invited to an interview prior to an offer being made for this course.

Your interview will form part of a visit day, during which you can sample aspects of your chosen course, meet with academics staff, hear from current students and find out about the latest Residence Abroad options.

Your interview will offer you the opportunity to explain your interests and qualifications, and how your chosen course fits with your motivations and study experience. 

Returning to education

We welcome applicants who are looking to return to study and value their contribution to the departmental culture and social life.

Access courses are acceptable as an entry route to this course - please contact the UG Admissions Team.

Deferrals

Applications for deferred entry are considered equally to other applications up to the point of confirmation.  Deferred entry is granted on the discretion of admissions staff, and is normally granted for one year only and two years at the maximum. Some English Language test results, such as IELTS or TOEFL are only valid for two years from the test date.

Policy for applicants who resit their qualifications

If you have re-sat individual modules to improve your grades, we will consider your application according to the standard selection process. If you are planning to re-sit the final Year 13 examinations, or have already done so, the University will consider your application, but we may require further information in order to make an informed judgment on your application.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry.  In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved.  We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.If you are applying for a place for the same year of entry through UCAS Extra, you should provide additional evidence of your suitability for the course. If you are applying through clearing you are required to meet the clearing requirements. In both UCAS Extra and clearing the places will be subject to availability.

Course details

Course description

BA French Studies 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.

With a strong heritage dating back to 1896, the discipline of French Studies at Manchester is the oldest in the UK. It's also one of the largest, with over 120 students registering on its various programmes each year. 

You will be taught by experienced academic staff of international distinction, including two winners of Manchester's Teacher of the Year award, and a dedicated team of specialist language tutors. Among our staff, more than two-thirds are native speakers of French and we teach you in that language from Year 1.

Our innovative language-teaching programme, which follows an enquiry-based learning approach, is central to a curriculum that offers an extremely wide choice of course units. These cover the Early Modern period to the present, and fall into the four broad categories of history and politics, literature, popular and visual culture, and linguistics and translation.

You will benefit from our rich Library resources - including precious manuscripts, a vast French literature collection, and contemporary digital media - and from our long-established partnership with the Alliance Française de Manchester, which hosts 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.

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:

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

Societies

Join The Francophone Society and benefit from French classes, discussion groups, cheese and wine nights, film screenings, themed socials, and a yearly trip to Paris.

The University is home to over 30 international and language-related student societies offering a breadth of cultural activities and experiences.

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.

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

Depending on the level at which you start ( ab initio or post-A-level), the first-year either delivers an intensive programme of basic French grammar and oral fluency, or allows you to quickly revise on the fundamentals before progressing with incremental levels of grammatical accuracy in writing, listening and speaking.

Other course units cover 350 years of French history and cultural production, enabling all students to locate key French and francophone events, people, ideas and artworks in their respective contexts.

Semester 1 lectures will be delivered online, with a sound and/or video recording available and accessible across time zones (for students who cannot be on campus). Semester 1 face-to-face teaching will go ahead for seminars and language classes if at all possible (the plan is to record and post these classes too wherever possible). However, government advice and the University's ability to accommodate social distancing requirements will need to be factored into the consideration. Thus it is simply too early at present to know whether small classes will be able to go ahead face-to-face in October. A view will be taken about teaching in Semester 2 nearer the time. Check our website for the latest advice

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
French Cultural Studies FREN10070 20 Mandatory
French Project FREN10140 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

Course content for year 2

You will build on the grounding already established. This year's core language course unit develops that of the previous year and prepares you for the linguistic challenges of your year abroad, including dedicated sessions on writing CVs and cover letters for job applications in French.

The other course units available in your second year are options broadly falling under four categories: Literature; History and Politics; Popular Culture; Linguistics and Translation. Topics covered include race and colonisation; cinema; literary representations of the tragic'; 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.

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
French Language 4 FREN51040 20 Mandatory
French Language 5 FREN51050 20 Mandatory
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
Pragmatics: Meaning, Context, and Interaction LELA20291 20 Optional

Course content for year 3

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

Course content for year 4

On your return to Manchester you will continue with your core language course unit and choose additional units from a wide range of even more specialised options, building effectively on Year 2 study.

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

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 course units.

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
French Language 6 FREN51060 20 Mandatory
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

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

The University Language Centre is home to language resources, including a new interpreting suite, purpose-built recording rooms and resources for over 70 languages.

The Centre also offers multilingual word processing, language learning software, off-air recording and AV duplication, multilingual terrestrial and satellite TV, and extensive support and advice for learners.

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

Careers

Career opportunities

A degree in Modern Languages and Cultures paves the way for an exceptionally broad range of careers. You will develop intercultural awareness and communication skills - both highly valued by employers.

Studies show that over two-thirds of UK businesses value foreign language skills; through your studies, you'll acquire transferable expertise at the very heart of language learning, including enhanced powers of perception and interpretation and advanced decision-making and multitasking skills.

This will open up numerous paths with an international dimension (eg business and finance). You will also have excellent all-round communication skills, making you a strong contender for openings in the media, PR and similar areas.

Many of our graduates go straight into business services, marketing, advertising, management, banking or communications. Others opt for postgraduate study or further vocational training to become accountants, lawyers, teachers (in the UK or abroad) or enter the Civil Service.

Employers who have taken on graduates of our French Studies courses in the past include KPMG, Deloitte, L'Oréal, BT, Louis Vuitton, Rothschild, Hilton Hotels, British Council, Teach First, Barclays, and the BBC.

Find out more on the Careers and employability page.