Course Details
Careers and Higher Education


AS/A Level courses are not complete nowadays without the study of a modern foreign language.   Continuing French beyond GCSE is a logical step for anyone with an interest in the language and culture of our nearest European neighbour and is a passport to success in careers with international connections.

Entry Requirements

Students need to have gained an A*, A or B at GCSE in order to be accepted for AS/A Level.

View our Survival Guide to French created by our sixth form students below

Course Details

By the end of the two years students should be able to speak and write confidently and fluently in French and to have more than a merely superficial understanding of the life and culture of French speaking countries throughout the world.

This practical course places equal emphasis on the 4 skills already explored in some depth at GCSE; listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Topics for AS Level

AS Level topics set in the context of France and/or French speaking countries and communities include:

Family, Education, The World of Work, Music, Media, Customs and Traditions.

Students also study one literary work, which can be either a book, a play or a film, which provides a further insight into the culture of France.

Topics for A Level

In addition A Level topics set in the context of France include:

Integration and Multiculturalism, The Rise of the Extreme Right, The Occupation and The Resistance Movement.

Students also study two literary works; either two literary texts or one literary text and one film, which further students’ understanding of classic and contemporary literature.

Last year grades A and B were achieved by 85% of students at AS Level.

83% of students at A2 Level achieved grades B, A and A*.

Information Technology

Opportunities for Information Technology are offered, including the use of e-mail with our partner schools.

Exchanges and Beyond

We have an established annual exchange link with the Lycée Rabelais in Chinon, in the Loire Valley. Students are actively encouraged to participate at least once  during their A Level course.

The exchange dramatically improves oral confidence and competence, as well as being an opportunity to develop independence and self-reliance. Many students collect research materials for their studies whilst on the exchange and some choose to return in their own time to extend their experiences.

Further opportunities are offered at University Open Days and Exam Revision Courses in Year 12 & 13, as well as lectures, plays and films in French as and when they occur.

Pastoral Support

The course is usually shared between two teachers. Help, support and encouragement are given from the outset, particularly in Year 12 when it is important to “bridge the gap” between GCSE and the demands of AS/A level.

Students are expected to work hard, both in class and at home, but this effort will be amply rewarded throughout this interesting, challenging and stimulating course.


AS/A Level French – Edexcel


Units for AS Level:

Paper 1: Listening, reading and translation.

(40%) 1hr 50 mins.

Paper 2: Written response to a literary work, grammar and translation.

(30%) 1hr 40 mins.

Paper 3: Speaking.

(30%) 30 mins approx. including 15 mins. preparation time.

Units for A Level:

Paper 1: Listening, reading and translation.

(40%) 1hr 50 mins.

Paper 2: Written response to two literary works and translation.

(30%) 2hrs 40 mins.

Paper 3: Speaking.

(30%) 23 minutes approx. including 5 mins. preparation time.

Careers and Higher Education

Opportunities for careers involving French are many and varied.  Although some students naturally move on to study French at university as part of a degree in Modern Languages, many also choose to combine French with disciplines such as Law, and Business Studies in order to enable them to carry out their desired career in an international forum.

Any job in industry or commerce with an international company would require a working knowledge of a language other than English and an A Level course in French is the ideal preparation for this.