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Requirements

Language Placement Exam

If you studied French in high school and are planning to continue studying this language in your first semester at Holy Cross or later, you must take a language placement exam before you can enroll in a French course.

Learn more on the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures website

Information for Majors and Minors

The French and Francophone Studies program comprises four levels that follow a logical progression, from elementary (FREN 101 and 102), to intermediate (FREN 201 and 202), to transitional (300-level courses) to advanced (400-level courses). The transitional level includes a language component (FREN 301) and preparatory methodology courses (FREN 302 and above) designed to bring students’ proficiency to the level of accuracy and clarity required for 400-level courses.

French courses are numbered following a uniform system: the first digit of each number refers to the level of instruction: elementary (1), intermediate (2), transitional (3), and advanced (4).

The second digit indicates the subject matter: language (0), survey (1), literature (2), French culture (3), Francophonie (4), Women Writers (5), African and Caribbean topics (6), film (7).

The last digit indicates the number of courses that exist in a given subject matter. With regard to courses beyond FREN 301, the last digit does not indicate an increasing level of difficulty. For instance, FREN 308 is not more difficult than FREN 302. Similarly, FREN 427 is not more difficult than FREN 421. Note that the digits “99” designate new courses that are offered for the first time in the program. They are neither more advanced nor more difficult than any other course at the same level.

Prerequisites for each course dictate progression. Students who have reached a certain level may not register for a course at a lower level, and may take a maximum of two 300-level courses beyond FREN 301 to prepare for the 400 level. Majors and minors are encouraged to be well rounded in the discipline by taking a variety of advanced courses in French and Francophone literature, culture, film, and language. If necessary, French courses taken within the Consortium (for example, at Clark University) may count toward the major or minor.

Majors and minors should seriously consider spending their junior year at one of Holy Cross’ two sites in France (Dijon or Strasbourg) or in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Students who spend a full academic year in France may automatically advance to the 400 level upon their return to Holy Cross. Those who spend one semester studying in France or Cameroon may need to enroll in a preparatory methodology course before they can advance to the 400 level. Students should consult with the program coordinator prior to enrolling if they are unsure of what French courses to take upon their return.

Major

A minimum of 10 courses at the intermediate level or above, including the following:

  • French 301 (Composition and Conversation)
  • At least two courses must be at the 400 level
  • At least one 400-level course in literature
  • At least two courses must be taken in the fourth year

Courses on French language and linguistics, and/or Francophone literature, film, art, civilization, and history taken in French in Study Abroad programs may count toward the major. Courses taken abroad will be transferred (bearing no 300 or 400 level designation) subject to the French coordinator’s approval. Majors who study abroad must take at least six courses at Holy Cross.

Minor

A minimum of six courses at the intermediate level or above, including the following:

  • French 301 (Composition and Conversation)
  • At least one course must be at the 400 level
  • At least one course must be taken in the fourth year

Courses on French language and linguistics, and/or Francophone literature, film, art, civilization, and history taken in French in Study Abroad programs may count toward the minor. Courses taken abroad will be transferred (bearing no 300 or 400 level designation) subject to the French coordinator’s approval. Minors who study abroad must take at least three courses at Holy Cross.