Why this course?
As an English student at Strathclyde you'll enjoy the best of old and new: a grounding in the classics as well as an insight into new fields of literature.
We'll show you how exciting and wide-ranging our subject can be. Employers like the skills developed in an English degree: written and verbal communication, analysis and discussion of ideas, and broad, creative thinking.
French is a major international language. It's the first language of more than 100 million people across the world, while more than 60 million people speak French as a second language.
Studying with us will give you the chance to become a fluent linguist and, with our year abroad programme, an opportunity to experience living, working and studying in another country.
French can also be studied within the LLB Law with a Modern Language offered by the Law School and within the Masters in International Business & Modern Languages offered by the Strathclyde Business School.
Our BA degrees in Humanities & Social Sciences are broad-based at the start. In Year 1, you'll study three subjects, including your chosen subject(s).
What you'll study
Your first year of study will include Shakespearean drama and modern, cutting-edge fiction.
You'll study some of the most momentous events in literary history, with classes on Renaissance, Enlightenment and Romantic writing.
You'll choose from options including children’s literature, America in the 1920s, the First World War and the Glasgow novel.
In your final year, you’ll write a dissertation and choose from options including Victorian Gothic writing, literary snobbery, travel writing, oral narratives and fairy tales. Student numbers for optional classes may be limited in Years 3 and 4.
Our location in the Lord Hope building provides a social hub and access to student services such as the library, cafés, meeting areas and exhibition spaces. The Andersonian Library has around a million print volumes as well as access to over one million electronic books and over 105,000 e-journals.
We offer these taught masters degrees:
Masters degrees can be a first step to a PhD or help with career and personal development. We welcome overseas students, including visiting students.
We also offer research degrees, including the PhD, and various MRes degrees, including an innovative MRes in Creative Writing.
You'll have the opportunity to take part in the Socrates exchange programme, in which you can spend your third year (two semesters) abroad and obtain credits that qualify you to enter the Honours year in one or both of your principal subjects on your return.
Socrates have partner institutions in Germany and France, as well as programmes in North America and elsewhere. While priority on Socrates is given to students who have proficiency in the relevant language, many classes (at least in the host English departments) are conducted in English and there is no language requirement for countries like the USA.
What you'll study
Two streams are offered in first-year: one for students with Higher French or an equivalent qualification and another for those without. Students in both classes study contemporary French language and aspects of the country’s culture and society.
Year 2 & 3
You’ll continue to develop your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills and learn more about the history and politics of France and French-speaking countries through literature and film.
In your final year, you’ll concentrate on translation, written and oral language and interpreting. Cultural classes – reflecting the research expertise of our staff – are currently offered in areas such as the occupation and how it is reflected in film.
This is a central highlight of the course and a major formative experience for students, not just in terms of language but on many different levels, personal as well as professional.
The Stevenson Exchange Scholarship is a competitive award which offers students funding towards a project they wish to undertake while on their year abroad. Staff select and interview several candidates for this each year. Our students usually do well in this competition; in 2013, one student secured £1,800 toward his project, and in 2014 three students were successful with awards up to £1,750.
In third year, students of French 3b - along with those in Italian and Spanish 3b - undertake a semester-long project. Students research a topic of their choice linked to French culture and produce a 20-minute presentation, a reflective report and a poster. The posters are displayed at an exhibition for two weeks in April and the student who designs the best poster in each language will receive a prize.
In this wide-ranging introduction to university-level English, your required reading ranges from ancient tales, to Shakespearean drama, to cutting-edge contemporary fiction.
Students take two combined classes: French 1A (semester 1), French 1B (semester 2). These courses are mainly organised around a linguistic progression towards level B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. There is a regular input of cultural background which takes the form of three lectures in semester 1 and two in semester 2 covering the following topics:
- The Making of Modern France
- France in a Global Context
- Understanding the French Republic
- French Identities
- Contemporary French Society
In addition, there is an introductory lecture in semester 2 entitled ‘What is translation about?’
You'll study momentous events in literary history in the historical core classes on Renaissance, Enlightenment and Romantic writing. You'll also learn about the various ways in which philosophers, historians and authors have tried to analyse literature in a course on Literature, Criticism and Theory.
Le Monde du Travail
La France et L'Europe
Cultural focus: time (35 hour week, RTT and ‘ponts’, paternity/maternity leave, …) & ‘human resources’ (hierarchical organisation, discrimination, unions, relocation,…)
Linguistic focus: the negation, asking questions, using pronouns.
Immigration & Nationalité
Cultural focus: the origins of the European ideal, Europe and the EU viewed from France.
Linguistic focus: subjunctive mood.
Les Femmes en Politique
Cultural focus: a historical view of immigration in France and a look at the specificity of the French ‘integration’ system.
Linguistic focus: the system of tenses in French (concentrating on past tenses).
Cultural focus: a further look (after first year) at French politics, concentrating on topical issues.
Linguistic focus: modal verbs.
Cultural focus: decentralisation, importance of regions in France.
Linguistic focus: the passive voice.
Cultural focus: the French economy (role of the state, …), marketing à la française
Linguistic focus: equivalent of –ing in French.
In addition, students specialising in French take the French Culture and History 2 class. This class focuses on the Occupation and French Colonialism/Decolonisation. The historical context for each topic is first set, and documents from the two periods studied, before discussion moves on to the cultural domain, via analysis of the following texts and films:
- Au Revoir les Enfants (film, Malle)
- Stupeur et Tremblements (text, Nothomb)
- L'Étranger (text, Camus)
- Le Samourai (film, Melville)
- Anthology of historical texts relating to the Second World War
- Anthology of historical texts relating to French Colonialism/Immigration
You'll continue with historical core classes on Victorian and 20th-century Literature, and you'll also choose one further class (English with another subject) or three classes (single English). Our extensive menu of options means you could study anything from Shakespeare to experimental fiction, from children’s literature to America in the 1920s, from autobiography to the Glasgow novel, from First World War literature to detective fiction.
Les Nouvelles Façons de Consommer
Cultural focus: a historical review of slavery and a look at modern forms of slavery.
Linguistic focus: reinforcement work on subjunctive mood, passive voice and negative forms.
Le Système Éducatif
Cultural focus: the impact of consumerism on the environment.
Linguistic focus: adjectives and comparative, hypothesis, conditional mood.
L’Année à l’Étranger
Cultural focus: a look at current issues in the French education system.
Linguistic focus: reported speech, imperative mood, a further look at pronouns.
Cultural focus: practical module aiming at preparing students for the year abroad.
There is also a French Studies 3 class: Freedom and Identity in France and the Francophone world. This class is based on the study of the following texts and films as examples of the treatment of the class’s twin themes:
- Milou en mai (film, Malle)
- Poverty (various texts)
- The Dreyfus Affair (various historical texts)
- Monsieur Klein (film, Losey)
- Rue des Boutiques Obscures (text, Modiano)
- National Identity in the Third Republic (various historical texts)
This is the year abroad, spent either studying in a French university or working as a language assistant or on a work placement. This year is compulsory to gain entry into Honours. (Students studying French and Spanish or Italian can opt to spend their years abroad in Spain or Italy, rather than in France.)
Throughout the degree, analytical and writing skills are being developed, preparing you to tackle the final-year dissertation. The choice of subjects for your dissertation is wide open – we value student initiative and reward it when we see it.
Fourth year is also your chance to take some more options – two for Joint Honours and three for Single Honours. The options on offer in Honours year include classes on Victorian Gothic writing, literary snobbery, 1930s literature and culture, travel writing, atrocity and modernism, oral narratives and fairy tales.
The language course is based on a series of thematic dossiers dealing with current issues in France and the Francophone world. The focus of the class is on reinforcing and developing key professional language skills, such as translation into English, translation into French, liaison interpreting, and 'exposé' (formal oral presentation).
Students in Joint Honours French will additionally have one or more French Studies 4 classes. Everyone will take the Core Class, Images of Women, which considers the changing portrayal of women over the centuries, using the following texts as the basis of discussion:
- Madame Bovary (novel, Flaubert)
- Fatale (novel, Manchette)
- L’événement (Ernaux, novel)
- Women in the Paris Commune of 1871 (various historical documents)
Joint Honours students not writing a dissertation in French will take these two further classes:
- The Occupation and its Portrayal in French Films
- France since 1945
In addition to traditional exams, many classes are assessed partly or solely by essays. In later years, you have the opportunity to set the topics and titles of these essays themselves.
Some courses have specific assessment methods, for example drama students are assessed for their writing and practical performance skills, while those studying digital humanities use social media and analyse texts with software.
All our classes use Myplace, Strathclyde's virtual learning environment, which can be used for online quizzes and keeping a reading diary.
Written examinations include translations from and into French, writing for a specific purpose and essay questions. Continuous assessment include online grammar tests and group projects, allowing you to conduct research, prepare a presentation and produce a poster.
In your final year you'll write a dissertation. Oral and aural tests are also an important part of assessment at all levels, and include listening comprehension exercises, presentations in French followed by discussion and interpreting.
Learning & teaching
You'll learn through lectures, seminars and workshops and take part in small group work, individual and group presentations, debates and writing exercises. Some classes also take place in computer labs and include analysis of texts using software tools.
Vertically Integrated Project
We've recently introduced a new research task in which staff, undergraduates and postgraduates work together.
We focus on the four important language skills:
We make great use of technology in the classroom – interactive lectures and digital language laboratories – and outside, through the use of web-based learning and streamed French television.
In later years, you'll perform presentations, write reports and interpret into English, which prepares you for potential future careers.
Scholars from French universities visit regularly to give guest lectures and lead workshops, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.
Required subjects are indicated following minimum accepted grades.
1st sitting: AAAA (Higher English, Higher French B plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)
2nd sitting: AAAABB (Higher English, Higher French B plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)
- Classical Studies
- Modern Studies
- Religious Moral & Philosophical Studies
We recognise a wide range of Highers, however, your profile must reflect a good grounding in essay-based subjects.
Year 1 entry
Typical entry requirement: ABB (A Level French B, GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: BBB (A Level French B, GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Typical entry requirement: AAA (two core subjects required; GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: ABB (two core subjects at AB; (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
36 (Maths SL5)
Year 1 entry
HNC Social Sciences: A in Graded Unit; Higher French B, Maths National 5 B or equivalent
Irish Leaving Certificate
Subjects and grades as for Highers
It is important to take care over your personal statement. We look for information about your academic and career interests, and your range of skills, abilities, and relevant experience. Your personal statement should show evidence you have a strong awareness and interest in the subject you are applying to.
Deferred entry normally not accepted.
Applicants with Highers
Due to the high level of competition for the number of available places, it is unlikely that Conditional Offers will be made to anyone attaining less than AAB at the first sitting of Highers.
Second-year entry for A Level/Advanced Higher candidates is possible with AA/AB in the two subjects you are planning to study.
Admission to Honours
All students will be admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a Bachelor of Arts degree at the end of Year 3 of the programme if they have accumulated at least 360 credits and satisfied the appropriate specialisation requirements. For admission to the final year of the Honours course, a student must have achieved an approved standard of performance.
We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.
Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.
Find out entry requirements for your country.
Degree preparation course for international students
We offer international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the entry requirements for
an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.
Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the
University of Strathclyde.
Fees & funding
How much will my course cost?
All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.
Rest of UK
Assuming no change in Rest of UK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2017/18, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and Integrated Masters courses); MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on Integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.
University preparation programme fees
International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.
Course materials & costs
The majority of course materials are available to students via Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Students can print course materials at their own expense.
The cost of course texts does not normally exceed £30 per academic year. Key language texts are used over 2 or 3 years of study. Multiple copies are also available in the University Library.
Studying abroad is an integral part of the degree course in Modern Languages - and usually takes place in Year 4. Students who choose to study in France, Spain or Italy are eligible for an Erasmus and grant to help minimise the extra costs of living abroad. This however, is not a full maintenance grant.
Typically, students will receive around £3,000 for a full academic year of study abroad. Students are required to meet travel, accommodation and extra living costs. These costs will vary dependent on the country of study. An estimated extra spend of £1,000 should be budgeted.
A range of scholarships are available for students of French, Spanish and Italian - and awarded on a competitive basis.
Students who work as English language assistants will receive a monthly stipend. In the case of France, this amounts approximately to 964.88 Euros per month gross (800 Euros net after social security deductions). Similar stipends are paid in Spain and Italy.
Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.
How can I fund my studies?
Students from Scotland and the EU
If you're a Scottish or EU student, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.
For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.
Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland
We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales
You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility.
Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.
International Students (Non UK, EEA)
We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.
We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.