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Course Length

Two years (or one year depending on individual circumstances).

The course

French is an interesting and challenging subject that equips students with the skills to communicate confidently in French in a range of everyday situations. The five main themes of the course are the following: identity and culture, local area with holiday and travel, school, future aspirations with study and work, and finally international and global dimension. Students will develop an awareness and understanding of the culture and identity of the countries and communities where French is spoken. The course provides an excellent foundation for the study of French at ‘A’ level.

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What skills do I need?

You need willingness to work hard at your grammar on a regular basis. You will also have to learn and relearn the vocabulary for each topic. The aim is to acquire the sufficient tools to be able to produce spoken or written responses in different contexts.

How is the course assessed?

There are four papers which are worth 25% each of the total examination. The use of dictionaries is not permitted and this includes Paper 2, the oral examination, during the preparation time.

Paper 1is listening and understanding in French. Foundation tier: 35 minutes including 5 minutes’ reading time. Higher tier: 45 minutes including 5 minutes’ reading time. Students will respond to multiple-response and short- answer open response questions.

Paper 2is the speaking in French examination. It will be internally conducted and externally assessed. Foundation tier: 7-9 minutes plus 12 minutes’ preparation time. Higher tier: 10-12 minutes plus 12 minutes’ preparation time. There are three tasks: a role play, questions based on a picture stimulus and a conversation based on two themes of the course.

Paper 3is reading and understanding in French. Foundation tier: 45 minutes, higher tier: 1 hour. There will be a range of different types of text including advertisements, emails, articles and literary texts. Students are required to respond to multiple-response and short-answer questions.

Paper 4is writing in French. Foundation tier: 1 hour 10 minutes, higher tier: 1 hour 20 minutes. Students are assessed on their ability to communicate effectively through writing in French for different purposes and audiences. Word counts are specified for each question and students must answer all questions. There will also be a translation into French.


(provided by college)

Studio – Edexcel GCSE (9-1) French Higher
By Clive Bell, Anneli McLachlan & Gill Ramage
ISBN 9781292117836

French/English dictionary is not provided but is essential.Please note that dictionaries are not allowed in any of the exams.

Exam Board and Specification Codes

Pearson Edexcel French 1FR0

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