Requirements for the French Major
French: A minimum of eight courses: FREN 41 PO, FREN 101 PO and six upper-division (= classes beyond FREN 101 PO) courses taken at the Claremont Colleges, including one course numbered FREN 140 – FREN 169 (or the equivalent: French or Francophone literature/culture from the Middle Ages to the 18th century), and one course numbered FREN 170-FREN 189 (or the equivalent: French literature/culture of the 19th, 20th and/or 21st centuries). A Senior Thesis (FREN 191 PO) or Senior Paper (FREN 192 PO) is also required. Students may be excused from FREN 041 PO if they place into a higher level through the department’s placement examination. FREN 101 PO is normally a prerequisite for majors for literature classes. FREN 185 PO is strongly recommended and FREN 106 PO is advised. Normally no more than three upper-division courses taken through study abroad in a French-speaking country can be counted for major credit unless the student is there for an entire year.
Students completing a major in French are required to complete senior exercises as described below. They are expected to have an advisor in the department (exceptions can be made for double majors), to participate in the Study Abroad Program and to reside in Oldenborg Center for one year.
Senior Exercises. Detailed information concerning the senior exercises for this major is contained in the information packets, available in the department office. All majors should obtain a copy of the appropriate document during their junior year.
Majors in French are required to write a Senior Paper (FREN 192 PO ) or Senior Thesis (FREN 191 PO ) in French and to enroll in the Senior Oral Presentation (FREN 193 PO ). By the end of the third week of the first semester of the senior year, every major must have the topic for the senior paper or senior thesis approved by a director. Another faculty member must agree to serve as a second reader for the paper or thesis and the proposal must be approved in writing by the section coordinator. The senior paper counts as a half-course and must be at least 12-15 pages in length, exclusive of bibliography and notes. It must be completed during the first semester of the senior year, although under exceptional circumstances, a student may request to do the senior paper in the spring. The senior thesis earns one course credit (one-half course credit per semester) and must be at least 30 pages in length, exclusive of bibliography and notes. Approximately one-half of the thesis (bibliography and 12-15 pages of the thesis itself) must be completed during the first semester of the senior year and the remainder completed during the second semester. At the end of the fall semester, the grade for the thesis will indicate that the course is in progress (N) and the grade earned upon completion of the thesis will replace the ‘N’ grade.
Majors in French who choose to write a thesis must prepare an oral presentation of 15-20 minutes in length in French on the topic of the thesis; those who write a paper will present an oral presentation of 15 minutes. The presentation will be delivered during the second semester of the senior year to the faculty and majors of the French section. A single grade will be awarded for the paper/thesis; this grade will be posted on the student’s transcript after the second semester of the senior year. No course credit is awarded for the oral presentation, and it is graded on a Pass/No Credit (P/NC) basis. Students who do exceptionally well on the senior paper or thesis will be eligible to obtain distinction in the senior exercise and may receive a Phyllis Johnson Award.