Foreign Language Requirement
Students continuing in French should enroll in the course indicated by their placement test results.
Students can satisfy the language requirement via AP/IB/dual-enrollment, or by receiving a superior score on the placement exam.
The department strongly encourages all students, especially departmental majors and minors, to study abroad for a minimum of one semester. Davidson’s own program is located in Paris where students may spend an academic year or either the fall or spring semester (see section on Study Abroad for more details). Students participating in non-Davidson foreign-study programs must secure advance approval from the department for credit toward the major.
Major Requirements (A.B. Degree)
Ten French courses numbered above 201, and including:
- French 313 “Advanced Grammar” or the equivalent;
- a course in the 220-229 “Introduction to Literature” series or the equivalent;
- French 260 “Contemporary France” or the equivalent;
- Three 300-level courses (excluding FRE 313).
- 490 (Senior Seminar);
- 491 or 499 (Senior Capstone or Honors Thesis).
- We encourage majors to take one course in French or Francophone studies offered by other departments. With approval of the French and Francophone Studies Department, one such course may be included as one of the ten required for the major. Examples include HIS 228, HIS 328, AFR 364.
No French course taken Pass/Fail at Davidson may count towards the major in French and Francophone Studies.
In senior year, French majors take the Senior Seminar in the fall and the Senior Capstone in the spring. Students may choose to pursue honors in French and Francophone Studies by writing a thesis. Please contact the Chair for more information.
No course taken Pass/Fail on the Davidson campus will count towards the minor in French and Francophone Studies.
Six courses numbered above 201, and including: Introduction to French Literature (220-229, or the equivalent), a course in French culture or civilization (260, 360-369, or the equivalent), and four additional courses beyond 201 in French language, literature, and/or civilization, at least one of which must be at the 300 level. At least two of the six courses must be taken in residence, one of these must be at the 300 level, with the provision that FRE 313 cannot be the sole 300-level course.
Candidates for Honors in French and Francophone Studies must have (or expect to have) a 3.5 GPA in French courses and a 3.2 GPA overall by the end of their junior year.
By the end of the spring semester of junior year, candidates for Honors must submit to the Chair of the department a one-page proposal, written in French, on a topic they have already researched. The proposal includes a working title and a preliminary bibliography with primary and secondary sources.
At the same time candidates for Honors must submit an original writing sample on a topic that will be provided by the Chair of the department (maximum: 2 pages in French; time limit: 2 hours).
Once the Department has approved the proposal, candidates start working on their Honors thesis in consultation with their adviser in the fall of their senior year. If they change thesis topics during the fall of their senior year, candidates must write a regular thesis rather than an Honors thesis.
A section of the written project (approximately 8 to 10 pages, or, for example, one chapter) must be submitted to the thesis committee by Reading Day of the fall semester).
In the fall semester of their senior year, candidates take the Senior Seminar (FRE 490) with the other French and Francophone Studies majors, in which they must receive at least a B+. In the spring semester of the senior year, candidates for Honors register for FRE 499. Their complete Honors theses are submitted to their thesis advisers by April 10. After necessary revisions, but before the end of April (Date TBA), the theses are submitted to the other readers on the Honors thesis committees. Candidates then have an oral defense in French before their departmental thesis committee in early May. Thesis director and readers vote on whether Honors shall be awarded.
In the case of an exceptional academic record, together with a thesis of the highest quality, the department may confer high honors.