Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is French Hard?
No, it is not more difficult than any other subject, depending on your level of ability and commitment. As far as the language element is concerned, it requires you to work on a regular basis. If you are not too confident about your grammar skills, do not worry: in first year, we go back to the basics!
Should I do French?
Yes, if you like it and are interested in it. Studying French has many advantages (see What are the long-term advantages of studying French? below).
What grade do I need in my Leaving Cert. to do French in Mary Immaculate College?
We recommend at least a H4 on an Honours Leaving Cert. paper.
Can I study French at MIC if I am a UL student?
No, in order to study French with us, you need to register at MIC first. You will then have the opportunity to pick up one of the following UL subjects as part of the three other subjects you will be combining with French in the first year of your degree: Economics (in first year only), Spanish, Sociology, Politics, Public Administration and Linguistics with TEFL. Of course, you may also choose to take all four subjects from the wide range of subjects offered by MIC.
Are French classes taught through French?
First- and second-year lectures are mostly taught through English. Final-year lectures are mostly taught through French. Except for first- and second-year beginners, tutorials are mostly taught through French.
Can I take French in the B.Ed. programme?
Yes, but due to limited resources, our department will only offer one module (FR4793) to B.Ed. students. It is therefore not possible for new B.Ed. students to obtain a specialism in French Studies.
When do I sit my exams?
Normally before the Christmas break and in May. There are a few in-term class tests as well.
How are the Terms organised?
We have 2 equal terms (semesters) comprising 14 weeks each – 12 weeks of teaching, followed by 1 study week and 2 weeks of examinations.
What does the French programme consist of?
The French course deals with French language, literature, civilisation, society and culture.
Is the language work hard?
No, as long as you work regularly and do what is required, because the language programme deals with the basic elements of French grammar.
Is any additional help given with grammar?
Yes, we have tutorials (small group sessions) which deal with translation and grammar – these classes expand on the points covered in the weekly grammar lecture.
Do we have any conversation class?
Yes, first-year conversation tutorials take place in semester 2.
What are the long-term advantages of studying French?
If you are a B.A. student, career opportunities for linguists are numerous: a degree in French combined with TEFL qualification will enable you to teach in a French-speaking country, while other options include banking and finance, personnel, marketing, tourism and jobs in the various EU institutions. If you plan on becoming a secondary-school teacher, bear in mind that French is studied by over 50% of Irish pupils.
Do I have to spend a year abroad if I do French?
The minimum requirement for BA students is to spend at least a semester in France or a French-speaking country. Spending a year abroad remains one of the most enriching and exciting experiences one can get!
What will I do if I spend a year in France as part of my degree?
You can either go as an exchange student to one of our partner institutions or work as an English language assistant in a French school. In the first case, you will receive an Erasmus grant from the EU and, in the second case, you will be paid to teach.
How many students choose to study French in First Year?
Normally around 65 students (50 post-Leaving Cert BA students + 15 beginners). About 40 second-year B.Ed. students take French as their Arts elective. So you will not feel lonely! Please note that BA and B.Ed. students are taught separately.
Can I do both French and Irish in Second Year?
Yes you can! The only subjects you cannot combine with French to degree level are History and Economics.
Can I do both French and History or French and Economics in First Year?
Yes you can! But you will not be able to keep combine French with History or Economics beyond Year One.
Can I do French for Beginners if I did French for my Leaving Cert?
No. The French for Beginners modules are only for students who never did French or who did French up to Junior Cert level. If you did Ordinary Leaving Cert French, please talk to us since you might be able to join our French for Beginners programme.