Modern Foreign Languages

Head of Department: Mrs H Kent
Exam board: AQA
Qualification names: French, German, Spanish
Qualification codes:
French         GCE AS: 7651      GCE A Level: 7652
German       GCE AS: 7661      GCE A Level: 7662
Spanish       GCE AS: 7691      GCE A Level: 7692

What you will study
AS French / German / Spanish (one year)
See the individual language sections below for the themes covered.
Paper 1: Listening, reading and writing
Paper 2: Writing
Paper 3: Speaking
A Level French / German / Spanish (two years)
See the individual language sections below for the themes covered.
Paper 1: Listening, reading and writing
Paper 2: Writing
Paper 3: Speaking
Students who opt for AS Level in French / German / Spanish are taught alongside A Level French / German / Spanish students in the Lower Sixth.

How you will be assessed
AS Paper 1: A one-hour-45-minute written paper (45% of AS)
Listening, reading and writing questions.
AS Paper 2: A 90-minute written paper (25% of AS)
Translation and essay on a set text or set film.
AS Paper 3: 12-14 min oral exam (30% of AS)
Conducted by your teacher and marked externally.
A Level Paper 1: A two-hour-and 30-minute written paper (50% of A Level)
Listening, reading, writing and translation questions.
A Level Paper 2: A two-hour written paper (20% of A Level)
Two essays on set texts or on one set text and one film.
A Level Paper 3: A 21-23 minute oral exam (30% of A Level)
Presentation and discussion of individual research project, discussion of one of four sub-themes studied.

Why choose Modern Foreign Languages
We live in a multicultural global society in which languages are increasingly important. While A Level language courses will help you to communicate with people in other countries, you will gain a lot more than just language skills. You will investigate fascinating aspects of culture and society in the target language countries and, by so doing, gain a deeper understanding of your own society and of how the world works. Employers recognise the value of language qualifications in job applicants. Apart from the obvious benefits of being able to communicate with people in other countries, it is recognised that successful language learners demonstrate good interpersonal skills and qualities such as determination, discipline and resilience.

Course requirements
There is quite a gap between the finishing point of GCSE and the start of the A Level course. Bridging the gap is much easier if you have a good grade at GCSE so students should have at least a B grade at GCSE in the language they wish to continue.

Related subjects at Sixth Form
Languages go well with any combination of subjects; students combine them successfully with the Sciences, Maths, Economics, History, Politics or Classics.  A lot depends upon your chosen career.  University degree courses in many disciplines have exchange programmes which allow you the opportunity to study for a semester or a year abroad. Taking a language alongside your other subjects at A Level keeps your options open should you choose to study or work abroad in the future.

Where could this lead?
You could study your chosen language(s) on their own at university or you can combine it with another subject. If, for example, you had A Levels in French, Biology and Maths, you could apply for a degree in Zoology with French and spend your third year undertaking research in a French-speaking country. Popular choices are degrees such as international business or law combined with a language. Language graduates apply successfully for jobs in the Diplomatic Service, finance, media and many other fields. You can also use the skills and strategies you have developed to study another language such as Chinese, Russian or Arabic.

Further important information
The Modern Languages Department has experienced teachers whose enthusiasm for their languages is second to none. Students are challenged and stretched, but with support every step of the way. We are eager to share our passion and love for our languages with the students we teach, hoping that we can stimulate them in wanting to pursue their studies in the future. We particularly maintain that a student with a firm knowledge of a modern foreign language will find a choice of future employment much easier to come by. In addition, we believe that learning a language at a higher level makes you more sensitive to language in general and, therefore, more articulate in your own language.

FRENCH THEMES
Social issues and trends
Theme 1 Aspects of French-speaking society: current trends (AS and A Level)

·       The changing nature of family

·       The ‘cyber-society’

·       The place of voluntary work

Theme 2 Aspects of French-speaking society: current issues (A Level)
·       Positive features of a diverse society

·       Life for the marginalised

·       How criminals are treated

Political and artistic culture
Theme 1 Artistic culture in the French-speaking world (AS and A Level)
·       A culture proud of its heritage

·       Contemporary francophone music

·       Cinema: the seventh art form

Theme 2 Aspects of political life in the French-speaking world (A Level)
·       Teenagers, the right to vote and political commitment

·       Demonstrations, strikes – who holds the power?

·       Politics and immigration

 

GERMAN THEMES
Social issues and trends
Theme 1 Aspects of German-speaking society (AS and A Level)

·       The changing state of the family

·       The digital world

·       Youth culture: fashion and trends, music, television

Theme 2 Multiculturalism in German-speaking society (A-Level)
·       Immigration

·       Integration

·       Racism

Political and artistic culture
Theme 1 Artistic culture in the German-speaking world (AS and A Level)
·       Festivals and traditions

·       Art and architecture

·       Cultural life in Berlin, past and present

Theme 2 Aspects of political life in the German-speaking world (A Level)
·       Germany and the European Union

·       Politics and Youth

·       German re-unification and its consequences

 

SPANISH THEMES
Social issues and trends
Theme 1 Aspects of Hispanic society (AS and A Level)

·       Modern and traditional values

·       Cyberspace

·       Equal rights

Theme 2 Multiculturalism in Hispanic society (A Level)
·       Immigration

·       Racism

·       Integration

Political and artistic culture
Theme 1 Artistic culture in the Hispanic world (AS and A Level)
·      Modern day idols

·      Spanish regional identity

·      Cultural heritage

Theme 2 Aspects of political life in the Hispanic world (A Level)
·      Today’s youth, tomorrow’s citizens

·      Monarchies and dictatorships

·      Popular movements