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Le Département de Français à St. Mary's


We are witnessing an exciting phase in history concerning the expansion of the modern European Union. It is becoming progressively more valuable and practical to possess an awareness of our closest European counterparts and their languages. Language skills and intercultural competences are in greater demand than ever before.
At St. Mary's College languages are and always have been an exceptionally popular option among our students. We in the language department seek to endorse a linguistic, cultural and societal appreciation through our modern European languages.


Nos Programmes d'Études  - Our Programmes

French classes are delivered through a combination of class work and language laboratory classes which collectively consolidate the four language skills: reading, listening, writing and speaking. For Transition Year and at senior cycle increased emphasis is placed on oral and conversational ability in preparation for the oral examination.

Our Junior and Leaving Certificate programmes consist of a broadly based initiation to modern French language and culture.


Brevet - Junior Cycle

- We focus on our student's ability to grasp both oral and written French while developing her appreciation of cultural differences between Ireland and France.
- The foundations of grammar are established and these are consolidated through the writing of personal letters, post cards and messages, the objective being for the student to effectively communicate through basic everyday French.

Année de Transition - Transition Year

An alternative appreciation for French language and culture is achieved through:
- a variety of classroom activities
- project work
- the design of a scrapbook and related dossiers which expands our students' artistic and creative talents and creates an opportunity for them to display their individuality
- oral examination preparation
- music - the TY girls collectively perform a selection of French pieces for the TY parents' night
- the use of ICT
- the medium of film and the exploitation of the mass media, including; magazine articles, news reports and advertisements.

A strong foundation is established for senior cycle French

Baccalauréat - Senior Cycle

A number of 5th Year students receive the opportunity to visit France and in October 2009 we visited Paris.

- La Compréhension Auditive (listening) = 20%
- La Compréhension Écrite = 30%
- L'Examen Orale = 25%
- La Production Écrite = 25%

For an in depth look at the French Junior and Leaving Certificate syllabi visit and select French from the respective drop-down menu.

Modern Languages and Third Level Progression

A foreign language requirement is essential to enter the following institutions of higher education/ universities for matriculation purposes:
- University College Cork
- University College Dublin
- National University of Ireland, Galway
- National University of Ireland, Maynooth
- Royal College of Surgeons Ireland
- National College of Art and Design
- Shannon College of Hotel and Catering Management
- Milltown Institute
- St. Angela's Sligo
The following require any second additional language:
- Trinity College Dublin
- University of Limerick
- Dublin City University
- Institutes of Technology
While there are some language courses that grant students entry without having previously studied the language, generally speaking having a language to Leaving Cert. is a general requirement in order to study it at third level.