French

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
Im in 1st year at uni and doing a joint honours with french. But im finding it really difficult, especially the speaking part. Has anyone else had a problem with french? will it improve in 2nd year? Im seriously thinking about changing my course but I'm going to see my department about it tomorrow.

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The thing about speaking a language is all about practice. I did a degree in French and German and found the best way to improve was to read texts aloud in the target language, that way I would get used to speaking the language and it also improves your pronunciation.

    Next thing you should think about is trying to arrange a conversation swap with another french person. i.e you could meet them once a week to speak french and once to speak english. a case of scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. Plus, they always come in handy for looking over your assignments before you hand them in ;) - shouldn't be too hard to find a native speaker given the number of foreign exchange students you see hanging around campus.

    If you really think the course is not for you then obviously speak to your advisor of studies but remember that first year can be quite hard for language students, given the various levels that your fellow students might have started uni with. some of them might have been on a GAP year already and of course their french is going to be better. If you do the work, work on your grammar and try speaking as much french at any opportunity you get you will find you'll start to make progress.

    plus, you'll get the opportunity soon to go abroad and study french. I can guarantee you thats an experience you will really look forward to. and just think, in 3 years time, you'll be speaking fluent french.

    Saying that doing a language degree is different to a lot of other subjects in that you do need to do the work and do it often. Back to what I was saying before - Practice!!

    Bonne Chance and hope everything works out for you!:)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    i wouldn't get too worried about your oral french in 1st year. the thing about speaking is that it's all spontaneous (obviously) and so you're bound to make more mistakes than when you're writing.

    i'm in the thrid year of my languages degree so am on year abroad now. I've just finished my placement in France, and although it has not been the magic formula I thought it was going to be to make me fluent, I do feel a lot more confident speaking in French now. It doesn't bother me if I make mistakes, as long as I'm understood. Of course I do still hit myself on the head when I come out with something really stupid like "j'ai parti hier", but in the whole scheme of things it's not really important!

    just try to enjoy the course, if you're really struggling with the language then concentrate on the written parts (you can take more time with them and get it right).

    but having a language under your belt at the end of your course will make you so much more employable - it's well worth keeping it up.
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