Multiple recent studies have affirmed the usefulness not only of studying a foreign language in college but of French as the most practical choice a student can make. French is the second international language and the only language other than English spoken on five continents. Proficiency in French, especially when coupled with a study abroad experience, will help you highlight your communication skills and multicultural understanding for future employers in a host of fields.
Mastering a foreign language can give students an edge in finding fulfilling careers in areas ranging from international organizations, government agencies, editing, and teaching to banking, companies involved in translation, import-export, tourism, computer science or any business with foreign contacts.
Students may add French to a major in the physical or social sciences, the arts or the humanities for purposes of research.
The undergraduate program for majors and minors includes courses in conversation, composition, phonetics, culture, literature, film, and business French. Culture and literature classes provide equal coverage of France and the Francophone world. Students are strongly encouraged to study abroad with one of BGSU’s affiliated programs, and most majors spend an academic year in France, while those minoring in French tend to study abroad for at least a semester.Students who want to teach French in elementary or secondary schools should pursue the Bachelor of Science in Education program with a major or minor in French. This program requires a series of professional education courses, field and clinical experiences and supervised student teaching, leading to certification from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Students may fulfill the student teaching requirement in Montreal, Quebec, as well as in Ohio.
All programs in French require the completion of general education courses covering such areas as speech, sciences, arts and social sciences to provide a balanced education.
The undergraduate curriculum has been specially designed to help students continue developing their language proficiency even as they move beyond the initial skills classes and into special topics and content classes.
Recent research and press about marketable job skills have increasingly highlighted the usefulness of foreign language proficiency and French in particular. Our program aims to offer students not only a traditional background in literature and culture, but also highly marketable employment skills with our new French for the Professions program. In addition, BGSU offers an elective course in Business French that gives students the chance to study administrative writing and commercial practices of France and the Francophone world. Students may prepare for the examination leading to a certificate from the Paris Chamber of Commerce.
The French House
The French House at BGSU offers women a unique chance to live in a small residential community with other interested students and speak French with the house supervisor, a graduate student from France. The French Club also meets in the French House and provides opportunities for both men and women to participate in various social and cultural activities.
High School Preparation
Students who have taken two years of high school French usually have to complete two college courses in French before courses count toward the major. Students who come to college with four years of language in high school can usually move directly into the major.
Students who do not have high school preparation may take elementary and intermediate French at BGSU, perhaps in the accelerated summer program offered in Tours, France, where it is possible to complete four semesters of elementary and intermediate French in one summer.
Students should follow a college preparatory curriculum that included four units (credits) of English, three units of college preparatory mathematics, three units of science, three units of social studies, two units of the same foreign language and one unit of the visual or performing arts. Students who have not taken all these recommended courses may be required to take University courses to make up any deficiencies.
Following is a typical program for a student pursuing a major in French and a minor in business administration. Variations on the program given here are possible, particularly if the student does not spend one academic year abroad. The numbers in parentheses indicate credit hours.
Introduction to French Literature II (3)
French Literature: Advanced Studies (8)
Career French (3)
Elementary Statistical Methods (3)
Introduction to Management Information Systems (3)
Principles of Economics (6)
Introduction to Accounting (3)
Business Finance (3)
French Film (4)
French Literature: Advanced Studies (8)
French Civilization I (3)
Translation Workshop (3)
Government and Business (3)
Introduction to Production and Operations Management (3)