Starting with an intensive three-semester language sequence, Swarthmore's French program prepares students to take advanced courses conducted entirely in French by their sophomore year. The section also offers an array of classes taught in English, including courses studying literature in translation, critical theory, film studies and courses in foreign-language pedagogy. Taken together, our program offers a full complement of courses designed to accommodate the needs and interests of all students, both majors and non-majors.
Students are introduced to important periods and figures of literatures written in French and films made in the French-speaking world. They expand their knowledge and appreciation of the diversity of French-speaking cultures and develop an appreciation of literary value by receiving training in literary and critical analysis. Courses in French and Francophone studies provide an opportunity to understand the historical and social forces underlying these various literatures and cultures.
French and Francophone Studies is offered as a major or minor in the course program and as a major or minor in Honors. The prerequisite to take upper-level courses (numbered 20 and higher) for both course and Honors students is FREN 012, the equivalent, or evidence of special competence.
All French and Francophone studies majors and minors, including students preparing for a secondary school teaching certificate, are required to complete a study abroad program in a French-speaking country.
Majors and minors in the course and Honors programs are expected to be proficient in spoken and written French to do the larger part of their work in French, i.e, discussions and papers in courses and seminars and all oral and written examinations, including oral defense of the senior paper and Honors examinations.
In addition to the process described by the Dean's Office and the Registrar's Office for how to apply for a major, we also ask that you speak with the French and Francophone Studies section head or one of your professors in French and Francophone Studies to discuss your options.
If after applying you are deferred, you may apply again in the fall by addressing the reasons for your deferral.