French Linguistics and Second Language Learning & Teaching

The MA Program in French – French Linguistics and Second Language Learning & Teaching

Tara Hashemi, 2014 SLAT Best Poster award and COH Outstanding GAT

I. Program Requirements

  • Students in the French Linguistics and Second Language Learning & Teaching (FLL&SLLT) Emphasis will complete their coursework by taking the Core Courses (12 units) and electives (18 units), substitutions may be approved (subject to DGS approval). 
  • A minimum of 18 units must be taken in courses taught in French.
  • Up to three thesis units (FREN 910) may count toward the total of 30 units in all MA options.  Thesis units (FREN 910) may not be combined with Internship units (FREN 593) or Independent Studies units (FREN 599) as part of the total of 30 units (they may be taken in addition).


1. Applied Linguistics, Linguistics, Pedagogy and Technology: 18 credits

  • Core courses: 12 credits from:

Courses in French:
FREN 561, French Linguistics
FREN 567, Topics in French Linguistics

Courses in English:
FREN 578, Literacy in L2/FL Classroom: Theory, Research, and Practice
FREN 579, Issues/Methods in Post-Second Foreign Language Teaching/Learning
FREN 581, Technology and Foreign Language Learning
FREN 587, Testing and Evaluation in Foreign/Second Language

  • Electives: 6 credits from:

Courses in French:
 FREN 532, French Translation
 FREN 533, Business French 1
 FREN 534, Business French 2
 FREN 563, Simultaneous and Consecutive Interpretation

Courses in English:
   FREN 583, Materials Design
   FREN 584, Second/Foreign Language Learning and the Web
   FREN 586, Language Learning in Study Abroad Contexts
   FREN 593, Internship 

2. French Studies courses: 9 credits from:

FREN 540, Topics in French Literature 
FREN 542, French Narratives and Film
FREN 543, Contemporary Francophone Literature and Cinema
FREN 544, Topics in French Culture
FREN 545, Francophone Cultures and Traditions
FREN 547, Topics in Francophone Studies
FREN 550, French Cultural & Literary History: Renaissance to Revolution 
FREN 551, French Cultural & Literary History: Revolution-World War II 
FREN 552, French Cultural & Literary History: Contemporary France (20th-21st)
FREN 553, Literature in Context: Focus on a Historical period

Please note that the French Studies courses listed above are taught in French. In exceptional cases (for example: when French Studies courses taught completely in French are unavailable or conflict with other required classes), the DGS may approve substitutions selected from the list of French Studies classes taught in English, subject to the conditions outlined above. Students must obtain pre-approval for these substitutions.

3.  At the student’s discretion (with DGS approval), 3 units of electives may be taken in FREN, LING, LRC, SLAT, or a related field.  

II. Completing the M.A.

Preparing for Your M.A. Exams

No later than the beginning of the semester of the expected graduation date, the candidate and DGS should agree upon and contact the Exam Committee Members, whose chair will be formally appointed by the DGS. The Examination Committee will be composed of two members from the Pedagogy, SLA, Linguistics and Technology faculty, and one member from the French Studies faculty. The candidate is responsible for:

  • checking Graduate College deadlines and submitting the Master/s/Specialist Committee Appointment Form through GradPath;
  • meeting individually with and providing (by e-mail) Exam Committee Members copies of all course syllabi covered in the MA program;
  • alerting them to the proposed date of the written examination, ascertaining their times and dates of availability for the Oral Exam, and communicating these times and dates to the DGS, who will schedule a provisional time, date, and classroom for the Oral Exam;
  • clearing all fees with the Bursar's Office.

The M.A. Written Examination

The M.A. examination is given twice a year, usually in October-November and March-April.  It consists of two parts, written and oral. The exams will be based on readings in the actual courses taken. In consultation with the members of the examination committee, the candidate will select the general area of the papers. The written exam will deal primarily with theoretical and technical issues. Candidates will write three short papers, 6-8 pages each (double spaced). Two of the papers will be in the areas of pedagogy, SLA, linguistics, or technology. One of the papers will be in French Studies. The candidate will have a week to write the papers. At least one of the papers will be written in French. 

Starting in the Fall 2018 for new incoming students, the M.A. written exams will be 3 hour sitting exams. 

The M.A. Oral Examination

The candidate is not permitted to undertake the oral component of the MA Examination until s/he has performed satisfactorily on the written part. (Satisfactorily is defined as a passing grade on the written part from at least two of the three committee members). A student required to retake one or more parts of the written examination (normally in the semester following the one in which the original attempt was made, but not sooner) must do so before proceeding to the oral examination. The M.A. oral examination is usually scheduled within a week to ten days of the written examination. The Graduate College sets deadlines each semester for the completion of this examination; students are responsible for knowing these deadlines and scheduling their exams accordingly. The oral exam will deal primarily with practical and implementational issues. Questions seeking clarifications or explanations may also be asked during the oral. The oral examination will last one hour. The examination time will be divided evenly between the members of the examination committee. Part of the oral will be conducted in French. The Examination Committee shall meet prior to the oral examination to determine time limits and questioning sequences. It shall meet once more after the completion of the oral examination to determine if the candidate has:

1. Passed.

2. Failed (in which case the student must wait until the following semester before retaking the oral examination). A second oral examination will take place no sooner than four months after the initial one. 

Note: Two adverse votes result in failure. An abstention counts as a vote for failure. Results are tallied by the committee chair, who informs the candidate only as to whether the vote was Pass or Fail.

The M.A. Thesis: In lieu of the written exam, students may present an M.A. thesis, written in French, which demonstrates proficiency in theoretical and/or applied French linguistics, second/foreign language learning and/ore teaching or digital technologies (and second language learning). For students presenting an M.A. thesis in lieu of a written examination, the oral examination will consist of 1) a defense of the thesis, and 2) questions on works and topics covered in the candidate’s course syllabi.

See the checklist of requirements and the formatting guide from the Graduate College. 

ll-updated and approved by the faculty on March 30, 2018