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French: A-level

Qualification: A-level

Exam Board: AQA

Entry Requirements: Grade 6 or above in GCSE French.


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Learn French in a specialist language setting

The Languages Department at Silverdale has a proud history: the school was originally a specialist language college and our teaching hub runs the only national teacher-training course in modern languages in the UK.

We aim to develop skills and confidence in four key areas: speaking, listening, reading and writing. Our teachers are very experienced and enthusiastic, using a wide range of activities and strategies to help students enjoy learning foreign languages. We have a French language assistant who gives each A-level student conversation classes in small groups to develop their speaking and fluency. Authentic resources and the use of the foreign language in lessons are a key part of language teaching at Silverdale. We offer an amazing trip to Nice, France to enhance your language learning experience.

The department is based in six classrooms, all of which have interactive whiteboards, and a language lab. We have excellent online textbooks and a range of support material. We guide students in choosing films, websites and podcasts of interest and have DVDs and books available to borrow from the department. In addition, we subscribe to a number of excellent language websites and use a wide range of interactive resources which students can access at home.


The course

Students follow the AQA specification, which covers a wide range of topics, e.g. social issues and trends, aspects of French-speaking society, multiculturalism, political and artistic culture, as well as aspects of political life in the French-speaking world.

In the first year of A-level students will study a film, and in the second year they will also study a book. All students will complete an internal transition exam at the end of Year 12.


Beyond the classroom

Past activities have included:

  • Communicating with penpals from the Lycée Masséna
  • Year 12 study visit to Nice, France
  • Visits to local universities



The government has recognised that there is a modern languages skills gap. Choosing to study a language at degree level is a way of boosting your employability.

Besides the traditional paths of interpreting, translating and teaching, students with language skills are in demand. These skills can be used in almost any career, particularly in businesses that trade internationally. There are also opportunities to work for the diplomatic service.

There are many degree courses in languages but you could also choose to combine French with a new language or a subject from a different area, such as politics, music or engineering. Students often study French alongside two sciences to follow a career in medicine.