Study Abroad in Paris, France - Catholic University (ILCF)

Study Abroad in Paris (Catholic University of Paris, ILCF): Courses

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French Language and Liberal Arts Program

All courses are subject to change at the discretion of the Institut de Langue et de Culture Françaises. For the latest course selection, please contact your Admissions Officer.

All students take a French language course. Students are placed into the appropriate level determined by a placement test taken online before arrival in Paris and an oral test taken upon arrival in Paris.

The French language course aims to enable students to communicate effectively in both written and spoken French. Through classes in phonetics, grammar, conversation and French life, students learn to express themselves in most everyday situations.

Students are required to take one of the following French language courses. Some courses offer a choice of contact hours hence two recommended credit amounts are shown in parentheses in the course heading.

French Language Courses

French 131 (11) or (9) | Beginner French

The Beginner classes introduce students to the rudiments of the French language. They learn to introduce themselves, to give and respond to simple greetings, to express their nationality and age. Vocabulary work focuses on numbers, colors, clothes, the family, the calendar and items encountered in the home. Working in the present tense, students learn to buy, order and pay for things as well as to express their likes and dislikes.

French 132 (11) or (9) | Elementary French

The elementary French classes aim to teach students to understand common phrases that they will encounter in daily life. They learn to answer basic questions and to ask for information on familiar subjects. Students discuss their habits, daily activities and personal experience and learn to give opinions. They are able to make comparisons and use both the simple future and simple past tenses. They work at expressing obligation, desire, future plans and past experience.

French 232 (9) or (6) | Intermediate French

At this level students learn to grasp the meaning of more detailed information through discussion of topics such as their studies, family ties, the work environment and social relationships. They are able to use the conditional as well as more complex future and past tenses, including the subjunctive. They can give orders, express doubts and feelings, relate what someone else has told them and discuss hypothetical situations. They learn to suggest, advise, reason and contest.

French 332 (4) | Advanced French

Advanced students learn to interact naturally and with spontaneity when conversing with native speakers, being able to express the subtleties of their feelings and thoughts. They work at associating facts and ideas, moving with fluency between tenses and learning to alter their register to suit a given situation. In debates and discussions students aim to make convincing and structured arguments backed up by concrete examples. They discuss politics, economy and history, comparing different written and spoken styles.

Additional Language Courses

Students can supplement their required French course with additional courses.

French 102 (2) | Elementary French Oral

The elementary Oral French classes aim to teach students to understand simple phrases that they will encounter in daily life. They learn to answer basic questions and to ask for information on familiar subjects, learning simple polite phrases useful in everyday life. At the higher levels, students will discuss their habits, daily activities and personal experiences, offering opinions. Classes use a mix of role play, listening exercises and pronunciation work with particular focus on intonation. Students are required to give regular short presentations in French. The elementary classes focus on themes such as the family, work and leisure environments.

French 202 (2) | Intermediate French Oral

At this level students learn to grasp the meaning of detailed information communicated via news reports, interviews or dispatches. They are able to follow conversations and understand short presentations. Students aim to be able to communicate with ease about familiar subjects even those not frequently encountered and to relate events to others using the correct temporal context. They learn to express feelings and opinions and to justify thoughts in discussion. They are able to say how they feel about abstract or cultural subjects such as films, books and music. Study is based on video and audio recordings, press articles and group discussion. Students will research social themes such as travel, cinema and family life.

French 302 (2) / French 402 (2) | Advanced French Oral / Master French Oral

Students at this level work at following conferences, speeches and reports of complex content and structure. They will understand recordings relating to professional, social and university life. They will be able to interact naturally and with spontaneity when conversing with native speakers, being able to express the subtleties of their feelings and thoughts. In debates and discussions students aim to make convincing and structured arguments. Students prepare 15-minute presentations (without notes), participate in classroom debates and make short oral summaries of radio bulletins and/or newspaper articles.

French 112 (2) | Elementary French Written

This course introduces students to simple written French. Students examine short, authentic texts (postcards, e-mails, articles) and learn to write similar texts of their own. Through study of the present and simple past tenses, as well as adjectives, adverbs and prepositions, students aim to master the key elements of the written language.

French 212 (2) | Intermediate French Written

At this level students read and analyze a variety of texts from the press and/or literature and work on particular linguistic features. Classes focus on syntax, vocabulary enrichment and more complex structures such as the subjunctive.

French 312 (2) / French 412 (2) | Advanced French Written / Master French Written

Students learn to give detailed descriptions, to recount events that occurred in the past and to express opinions, composing texts that respond to material they have studied. Complex sentences are analyzed, written exercises “in the manner of” are re-written.

French 121 and 122 (2) | Beginner and Elementary French Phonetics

The phonetics classes aim to help students with pronunciation and intonation. At this level classes work on the acquisition of sounds, relating the heard sound to its written equivalent and correcting individual mispronunciations. Students learn the phonetic alphabet.

French 222 (2) | Intermediate French Phonetics

At this level, phonetics classes develop the student’s awareness of his/her pronunciation and increase the fluency of speech. Students work on transcribing phonetically-written texts.

French 322 (2) | Advanced French Phonetics

Students read aloud to perfect their intonation and fluency. Review of all exercises in a more detailed and complex way.

Courses Taught in English

The ILCF typically offers a range of courses in English covering topics such as Art, Cinema, Politics, and Cultural Studies. Examples of courses offered may include:

Art History 311 (3) | Paris, World Capital of Arts and Architecture

With a focus on modernity and through visits to significant sites in the city, students learn to classify architectural function and style. Through discussion of the social and economic conditions in which various buildings were constructed, students acquire an understanding of the historic conditions that defined the changing Parisian landscape of the 17th to 20th centuries.

Cultural Studies 301 (3) | French Gastronomy

Interested students should contact the Admissions Officer for a course syllabus.

Cultural Studies 303 (3) | Intercultural Adaptation

Interested students should contact the Admissions Officer for a course syllabus.

Economics 305 (3) | Politics and Economy in France Today

This course looks at the historical, political and economic aspects of European integration since 1945 and acquaints students with the decision-making processes that enable the EU to function. Classes examine the key issues that Europe currently faces on the world stage, studying concerns such as national identity, immigration, ecology and demographics.

Film Studies 321 (3) | Great Authors in French Cinema through Historical Films

The course focuses on the history of French cinema, from its scientific beginning at the end of the 19th century, moving through the industrial revolution to the 21st century. Historical films in the widest sense are studied, from opinion position to historical reenactment and documentary.

Fine Arts 307 (3) | Fashion in France 18th – 21st century

Links between fashion and artistic, cultural, social and political contexts across French history are explored and the lasting dominance of Paris in the world of fashion is examined. Students become familiar with the historical evolution of the luxury fashion industry and learn to appreciate how fashion and accessories have been used to express a variety of different identities over time. Students pay some entrance fees for museums and exhibitions. Enrollment is limited.

Courses Taught in French

Each semester, the ILCF offers a variety of electives taught in French, worth 2 credits for the 11-week proram and 3 credits for the 15-week program. These courses cover fields of study such as history of Paris, French history, cinema, fashion, literature, and cultural studies. Students can enroll in any of the electives if they have the required level of French. Students should contact their Admissions Officer if they need a syllabus.

Courses Taught by Other Institutions

For an additional fee students may take a music, ballet or theater course at the Schola Cantorum. Please speak to your AIFS Admissions Officer for further information.

The Schola Cantorum is a private music school in Paris.

Schola Cantorum

Music, Ballet, Theater 307 fall/spring (1-3) | Instrument Study, Lyrics, Ballet

Placement is by examination, except for beginners. Instruction in French is at the student’s expense. Credit granted depends on the work produced and hours spent at the Schola. Instruments (except piano) are not provided. Students must pay a supplement depending on number of hours of instruction taken. Sessions are 30, 45 or 60 minutes. An additional deposit is required to be paid prior to arrival in Paris in order to register for classes at the Schola Cantorum. Please contact your AIFS Admissions Officer right away if you are interested.