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Learning a new language can be an awesome experience, especially if you get to use what you learned while traveling to a new country or when meeting people who speak that language. In college, the language levels can be confusing and different than what you experienced in high school – there are placement tests but you can waive into any class you’d like, it’s just your choice to do so and it’s your grade on the line. We’re here to clarify that for you a little here and explain what FLF 102 is and tips to succeed in it!

1. What the class level is

If you have taken up to French 2 in high school, you will mostly likely do extremely well in this level. You do not need to know any imperfect tense and the class goes over past tense with both avoir and être, and so there isn’t much grammar experience required – although the pace with these things moves quickly. If you have only done one french course in high school, it is recommended to  contact your advisor or a professor for further help deciding which level is right for you.

2. Pace

We have a whole section of review in the beginning that focuses on vocab and simple grammar, but most chapters and units go by quickly. The review is for those who may not have had a french class recently – if you are learning the “review” material for the first time that may be a red flag that you are in the wrong level. There is an exam about every three weeks but each exam covers an extensive amount of material. For example, one unit will cover all restaurant vocabulary and culture along with grocery store and connivence store items.

3. Textbook

The textbook is online – if you plan on taking two consecutive french classes you can save money by purchasing the longer option of the book subscription – you will be able to switch it over to the other class code later when your first semester ends. The textbook has all vocabulary you will need to know with review summaries after every chapter and then different practice cards and review sections at the end of the textbook!

4. Online Practice

For most of the homework assignments (MOST, not all of them by any means) are online and you can get away with not putting in a ton of effort and still getting a good grade – but we highly suggest putting in your best effort as it’ll reflect in your preparedness and grade on your written exams. There have also been POP quizzes that you will likely only know how to do if you completed the homework well. Honestly, it’s not that much – just do it.

5. Writing Assignments

There are writing assignments given the same week of the “Oui je peux” assignments (written, oral, and these are all given in the same week about once a month – yes there will be a hell week every month for this class) that do not take much time but summarize the unit and give you the opportunity to show your professor what you learned during the unit and even in the class. The written assignments are a great way to leave a positive impression and the weight isn’t too high but just enough to boost your grades on the tests.

6. Oui Je Peux

Most professors give oral exams for the same weight as the written tests, most of the time with a partner you will be given a scenario and requirements a small bit ahead of time and then can write a script and prepare all you would like but it’ll have to be memorized or you will have to come up with something on the spot. We highly suggest choosing your partner wisely as you both receive the same score and you don’t want your grade to suffer based on them!

College is a nice time to try new things – including a new language. If you are starting a language for the first time you really should start in 101, you don’t want to be in a class where they are speaking around you and you have absolutely no clue as to what’s going on. However, if you have a solid background in the language it is likely you can comfortably move to the 102 or 201 level for that language and be absolutely prepared – if you didn’t place into the level you had hoped for you should talk to a professor and then get a waiver!


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Samantha Lenger

Hi! I'm a Marketing and Economics major at NC State University! I love traveling, coffee, and adventures. In my free time I write, watch cheesy movies, and play with my dog. On a typical day, I drink too much coffee but love it anyway!


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