L&S_French_2

The French program at UW–Madison offers students opportunities for cultural and literary learning about the French-speaking world through dynamic, in-class experiences and extracurricular components such as the French House, an immersion residence hall and cultural center, and the French Ambassador program, a student organization that engages students with French and Francophone cultural events in and around Madison.

Students intending to major in French or complete the certificate enter the program at the appropriate level depending on their language proficiency.

  • The French major includes two prerequisite courses (FRENCH 228 and FRENCH 271) followed by 24 credits in French.  
  • The French certificate includes two core courses (FRENCH 228 and FRENCH 271) followed by three additional courses at the 311 level or above. 

The majority of UW–Madison French majors or certificate students complete their requirements through a combination of courses taken on campus and abroad with a UW–Madison sponsored program.

Students have the option to take a class for Honors at almost all levels. For more information, please see the department website and/or consult a department advisor.

Introductory and Intermediate French Language Sequence

FRENCH 101 First Semester French4
FRENCH 102 Second Semester French4
FRENCH 201 French for Speakers of Other Romance Languages4
FRENCH 203 Third Semester French4
FRENCH 204 Fourth Semester French4
FRENCH 227 Exploring French: Intermediate-Level Course for Entering Students3
FRENCH 228 Intermediate Language and Culture3-4

After French 228, courses focus on language, culture, and literature.

Advanced Courses in Language

FRENCH 301
FRENCH 302
Practical French Conversation
and Practical French Conversation
2
FRENCH 311 Advanced Composition and Conversation3
FRENCH 312 Advanced Oral and Written Expression: Writing Across the Humanities3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  313 Professional Communication and Culture in the Francophone World3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  314 Contemporary Issues in Government, Organizations, and Enterprise3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  315 Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies in Professional Communication3
FRENCH 350 Applied French Language Studies1-3
FRENCH 590 Advanced Phonetics3

Advanced courses in Culture

FRENCH 347 Introduction to Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Civilization3
FRENCH 348 Modernity Studies3
FRENCH 449 Francophone Modernity Studies3
FRENCH 451 Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Studies3
FRENCH 462 French/Francophone Cultural Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 568 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Cultural Studies3

Advanced Courses in Literature

FRENCH 321 Introduction to Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Literature3
FRENCH 322 Introduction to Literature of Modernity3
FRENCH 430 Readings in Medieval and Renaissance Literature3
FRENCH 431 Readings in Early Modern Literature3
FRENCH 433 Readings in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature3
FRENCH 461 French/Francophone Literary Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 472 French/Francophone Literature and Women3
FRENCH 567 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Literary Studies3
FRENCH 595 Theory and Practice of French/Francophone Drama4
FRENCH 681
FRENCH 682
Senior Honors Thesis
and Senior Honors Thesis
6
FRENCH 698 Directed Study1-6
FRENCH 699 Directed Study1-6

French courses at the 600 level or above (not including those listed above) are primarily graduate courses and require permission of an undergraduate advisor and the instructor.

Courses Taught in English

The following are introductory culture courses taught in English and do not count for credit toward the Major or the Certificate in French:

FRENCH 211 French Interdisciplinary Studies3
FRENCH 240 Immigration and Expression3
FRENCH 248 Ethnic Studies in the French/Francophone World(s)3
FRENCH/​CLASSICS/​HISTORY/​ITALIAN/​MEDIEVAL  550 Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies in Medieval Civilization3

For information on teacher training in French, see the School of Education section in the Guide.

For courses in French literature in translation, see the Literature in Translation course listing.

Students can declare the French major or certificate at any time.

Students are strongly encouraged to consult with a French advisor as early as possible to discuss various paths available to complete the requirements. Please note that study abroad can make gaining a major or a certificate very manageable.

Roughly 75 percent of French majors also major in at least one other area on campus, from the humanities to the sciences.

For more information, contact a French advisor

University General Education Requirements

All undergraduate students at the University of Wisconsin–Madison are required to fulfill a minimum set of common university general education requirements to ensure that every graduate acquires the essential core of an undergraduate education. This core establishes a foundation for living a productive life, being a citizen of the world, appreciating aesthetic values, and engaging in lifelong learning in a continually changing world. Various schools and colleges will have requirements in addition to the requirements listed below. Consult your advisor for assistance, as needed. For additional information, see the university Undergraduate General Education Requirements section of the Guide.

General Education
  • Breadth—Humanities/Literature/Arts: 6 credits
  • Breadth—Natural Science: 4 to 6 credits, consisting of one 4- or 5-credit course with a laboratory component; or two courses providing a total of 6 credits
  • Breadth—Social Studies: 3 credits
  • Communication Part A & Part B *
  • Ethnic Studies *
  • Quantitative Reasoning Part A & Part B *

* The mortarboard symbol appears before the title of any course that fulfills one of the Communication Part A or Part B, Ethnic Studies, or Quantitative Reasoning Part A or Part B requirements.

College of Letters & Science Breadth and Degree Requirements: Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

Students pursuing a bachelor of science degree in the College of Letters & Science must complete all of the requirements below. The College of Letters & Science allows this major to be paired with either a bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science curriculum. View a comparison of the degree requirements here.

Bachelor of Science DEGREE REQUIREMENTS

Mathematics Two (2) 3+ credits of intermediate/advanced level MATH, COMP SCI, STAT
Limit one each: COMP SCI, STAT
Foreign Language Complete the third unit of a foreign language
Note: A unit is one year of high school work or one semester/term of college work.
L&S Breadth
  • Humanities, 12 credits: 6 of the 12 credits must be in literature
  • Social Sciences, 12 credits
  • Natural Sciences, 12 credits: must include 6 credits in biological science; and must include 6 credits in physical science
Liberal Arts and Science Coursework 108 credits
Depth of Intermediate/Advanced work 60 intermediate or advanced credits
Major Declare and complete at least one (1) major
Total Credits 120 credits
UW-Madison Experience 30 credits in residence, overall
30 credits in residence after the 90th credit
Minimum GPAs 2.000 in all coursework at UW–Madison
2.000 in intermediate/advanced coursework at UW–Madison

Non–L&S Students PURSUING AN L&S MAJOR

Non–L&S students who have permission from their school/college to pursue an additional major within L&S only need to fulfill the major requirements and do not need to complete the L&S breadth and degree requirements above.

Requirements for the Major

Introductory (prerequisite) Courses

FRENCH 228 Intermediate Language and Culture3-4
FRENCH 271 Introduction to Literary Analysis3-4
Total Credits6-8

Total Credits

To complete the French major, 24 credits are needed beyond the introductory (prerequisite) courses. Please note that Literature in Translation courses cannot be counted toward the major.

Required French/Francophone Literature and Culture

FRENCH 321 Introduction to Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Literature3
FRENCH 322 Introduction to Literature of Modernity3
FRENCH 347 Introduction to Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Civilization3
or FRENCH 451 Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Studies
Total Credits9

Additional French/Francophone Literature and/or Culture

Course list - select one:

FRENCH/​INTL BUS  313 Professional Communication and Culture in the Francophone World3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  314 Contemporary Issues in Government, Organizations, and Enterprise3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  315 Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies in Professional Communication3
FRENCH 325 Visual Culture in French/Francophone Studies3
FRENCH 348 Modernity Studies3
FRENCH 350 Applied French Language Studies1-3
FRENCH 430 Readings in Medieval and Renaissance Literature3
FRENCH 431 Readings in Early Modern Literature3
FRENCH 433 Readings in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature3
FRENCH/​AFRICAN  440 African/Francophone Film3
FRENCH 449 Francophone Modernity Studies3
FRENCH 451 Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Studies3
FRENCH 461 French/Francophone Literary Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 462 French/Francophone Cultural Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 465 French/Francophone Film3
FRENCH 467 Aspects of Contemporary French Literature3
FRENCH 472 French/Francophone Literature and Women3
FRENCH 567 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Literary Studies3
FRENCH 568 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Cultural Studies3
FRENCH 595 Theory and Practice of French/Francophone Drama4
FRENCH 615 Grammaire avancee3
FRENCH 616 Social Responsibility in Contemporary French-Language Professional Writing3
FRENCH 617 Contemporary Skill Set Literature in French3
FRENCH 618 Career Strategies for the French-Speaking World2
FRENCH 623 Communication orale en situations professionnelles3
FRENCH 626 Critical Approaches to French Literature3
FRENCH 630 Le Siecle des Lumieres3
FRENCH 631 Litterature Francaise Du XVIIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 633 Le Roman Au XVIIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 636 Le Roman Francais 1850-19003
FRENCH 637 La Littérature française du XIXe siècle3
FRENCH 639 La Litterature Du XVIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 640 La Litterature Du XVIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 642 Culture et sociétés dans le monde francophone3
FRENCH 645 La Litterature Francaise du XVIe Siecle3
FRENCH 646 La Litterature Francaise du XVIe Siecle3
FRENCH 647 Le Roman Francais au XXe Siecle3
FRENCH 653 Cinéma français/francophone3
FRENCH 657 La Poesie Francaise du XIXe Siecle3
FRENCH 665 Introduction aux etudes francophones3
FRENCH 671 La Critique Litteraire3
FRENCH 681 Senior Honors Thesis3
FRENCH 682 Senior Honors Thesis3
FRENCH 691 Thesis2
FRENCH 692 Thesis2

At least one French/Francophone literature and/or culture course at the 400 level or higher

Course list - select one:

FRENCH 430 Readings in Medieval and Renaissance Literature3
FRENCH 431 Readings in Early Modern Literature3
FRENCH 433 Readings in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature3
FRENCH/​AFRICAN  440 African/Francophone Film3
FRENCH 449 Francophone Modernity Studies3
FRENCH 451 Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Studies3
FRENCH 461 French/Francophone Literary Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 462 French/Francophone Cultural Studies Across the Centuries3
FRENCH 465 French/Francophone Film3
FRENCH 467 Aspects of Contemporary French Literature3
FRENCH 472 French/Francophone Literature and Women3
FRENCH 567 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Literary Studies3
FRENCH 568 Undergraduate Seminar in French/Francophone Cultural Studies3
FRENCH 595 Theory and Practice of French/Francophone Drama4
FRENCH 615 Grammaire avancee3
FRENCH 616 Social Responsibility in Contemporary French-Language Professional Writing3
FRENCH 617 Contemporary Skill Set Literature in French3
FRENCH 618 Career Strategies for the French-Speaking World2
FRENCH 623 Communication orale en situations professionnelles3
FRENCH 626 Critical Approaches to French Literature3
FRENCH 630 Le Siecle des Lumieres3
FRENCH 631 Litterature Francaise Du XVIIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 633 Le Roman Au XVIIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 636 Le Roman Francais 1850-19003
FRENCH 637 La Littérature française du XIXe siècle3
FRENCH 639 La Litterature Du XVIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 640 La Litterature Du XVIIe Siecle3
FRENCH 642 Culture et sociétés dans le monde francophone3
FRENCH 645 La Litterature Francaise du XVIe Siecle3
FRENCH 646 La Litterature Francaise du XVIe Siecle3
FRENCH 647 Le Roman Francais au XXe Siecle3
FRENCH 653 Cinéma français/francophone3
FRENCH 657 La Poesie Francaise du XIXe Siecle3
FRENCH 665 Introduction aux etudes francophones3
FRENCH 671 La Critique Litteraire3
FRENCH 681 Senior Honors Thesis3
FRENCH 682 Senior Honors Thesis3
FRENCH 691 Thesis2
FRENCH 692 Thesis2

Language course numbered 300 or above

Course list - select one:

FRENCH 311 Advanced Composition and Conversation3
FRENCH 312 Advanced Oral and Written Expression: Writing Across the Humanities3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  313 Professional Communication and Culture in the Francophone World3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  314 Contemporary Issues in Government, Organizations, and Enterprise3
FRENCH/​INTL BUS  315 Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies in Professional Communication3
FRENCH 350 Applied French Language Studies1-3
FRENCH 590 Advanced Phonetics3

 

Residence and Quality of Work

1. 2.000 GPA in all FRENCH and major courses

2. 2.000 GPA on at least 15 credits of upper-level work in the major, taken in residence: FRENCH 300 through FRENCH 699

3. 15 credits in FRENCH taken on campus at UW–Madison

Honors in the Major

Students may declare Honors in the French Major in consultation with a French undergraduate advisor. 

HONORS IN THE FRENCH MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

To earn a B.A. or B.S. with Honors in the Major in French, students must satisfy both the requirements for the major (above) and the following additional requirements:

  • Earn a 3.300 overall university GPA
  • Earn a 3.500 GPA for all FRENCH courses beyond FRENCH 271 
  • Complete at least 8 credits, taken for Honors, beyond FRENCH 2711
  • Complete a two-semester Senior Honors Thesis in FRENCH 681 and FRENCH 682, for a total of 6 credits2
1

 Study abroad in France or in another French-speaking country is highly recommended, and the 8 credits taken for Honors can be fulfilled through French courses taken abroad at the appropriate level.

2

 In certain circumstances (particularly when the student is an Honors candidate in two or more departments), two courses in literature or cultural studies at the 500 or 600 level may be substituted for the Senior Honors Thesis.

University Degree Requirements

Total Degree To receive a bachelor's degree from UW–Madison, students must earn a minimum of 120 degree credits. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 degree credits. Students should consult with their college or department advisor for information on specific credit requirements.
Residency Degree candidates are required to earn a minimum of 30 credits in residence at UW–Madison. "In residence" means on the UW–Madison campus with an undergraduate degree classification. “In residence” credit also includes UW–Madison courses offered in distance or online formats and credits earned in UW–Madison Study Abroad/Study Away programs.
Quality of Work Undergraduate students must maintain the minimum grade point average specified by the school, college, or academic program to remain in good academic standing. Students whose academic performance drops below these minimum thresholds will be placed on academic probation.

Students completing an undergraduate major in French will be able to: 

  1. Demonstrate that they understand and can analyze literary and non-literary texts in French representing a broad spectrum of topics, time periods, and geographical regions (interpretive communication).
  2. Express themselves effectively in spoken and written French to inform, persuade, and narrate for different audiences of listeners, viewers, or readers (presentational communication).
  3. Express themselves effectively in spoken and written French to share information, reactions, and opinions related to a broad spectrum of topics and texts (interpersonal communication).
  4. Recognize and explain cultural artifacts, practices, and perspectives of the French-speaking world including how these cultural elements relate to literary and non-literary texts in French (cultural knowledge).
  5. Demonstrate a good degree of understanding of lexical, grammatical, syntactic, and stylistic features of the French language (linguistic knowledge).
  6. Demonstrate awareness of difference and diversity by comparing and contrasting culturally situated beliefs, behaviors, and norms of the French-speaking world with those found in their own culture (cross-cultural awareness).
  7. Engage in a sustained fashion with the French language, its users, and cultural artifacts in and beyond the classroom, e.g., in their own community, virtual communities, and study abroad (engagement with the French language and culture).

The Department of French and Italian encourages our majors to begin working on their career exploration and preparation soon after arriving on campus. We partner with the L&S Career Services office to help you leverage the academic skills learned in your major and liberal arts degree, explore and try out different career paths, participate in internships, prepare for the job search and/or graduate school applications, and network with professionals in the field (alumni and employers).

Letters & Science graduates are in high demand by employers and graduate programs. It is important to us that our students are career ready at the time of graduation, and we are committed to your success.

Career Resources

Advising Resources

  • For information on language proficiency, language placement, and retrocredits, please see the French and Italian department website or the Language Institute website.
  • For language and international directions advising, please contact Michael Kruse, International Directions Advisor in the Language Institute.
  • For advising on the French Major or Certificate, please contact a French advisor.

FRENCH 

Professors Bousquet, Debaisieux, Goodkin, Langer, Miernowski, Songolo, Tochon, Vatan, Vila

Associate Professors El Nossery, Willis Allen

Assistant Professors Armstrong, Dima, Gipson

Faculty Associates Deitz, Irving

Senior Lecturer Miernowska

French House

La Maison Française, a francophone (French-speaking) residence hall and cultural center, is managed by the Department of French and Italian. Residence is open to UW–Madison students with the equivalent of a fourth-semester level of French. At least two native French graduate students reside in the house, aiding in conversation and facilitating the use of French. Most residents are Americans: prospective teachers of French, French majors, and students in other disciplines who want to speak French on a daily basis. Applications should be made well in advance. More information is available at uwfrenchhouse.org. 

The French House is open for lunch, Monday - Friday, for all UW-Madison students. Students wishing to receive a credit for FRENCH 301 or FRENCH 302 must attend 4 times per week on average. 

The French House is open to the public for Wednesday dinner and Friday lunch during the academic year.

Piazza Italia

The department sponsors Piazza Italia, the Italian floor in the Lakeshore residence halls. An Italian graduate student serves as the resident house fellow, facilitating conversation in Italian and assisting a faculty member in a special 1-credit course on Italian culture. Students studying Italian will find a collegial atmosphere at Piazza Italia, which features special Italian-oriented programming including films, lectures, games, current events material, and regular meals "all'italiana" with guests from the Italian program. Piazza Italia is part of the International Learning Community (ILC), which is dedicated to enriching cross-cultural understanding through a variety of social and educational programs.

Clubs and Other Activities

French

French conversation groups and The French Ambassadors, a student organization, give students the opportunity to converse in French and participate in cultural events. Undergraduates are also welcome at scholarly talks and department events on an array of subjects (see department website and the French House website for event details).

Italian

Caffè Culturale, an Italian conversation group, gives students the opportunity to converse in Italian, while the Italian Club allows students to participate in cultural events on campus and in the community. Cineteca Italiana organizes weekly screenings of Italian films. Undergraduates are also welcome at scholarly talks and department events on an array of subjects (see department website for event details).