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French Undergraduate Studies

Studying French at UNC-CH gives students the opportunity to acquire a good command of the French language (reading, writing, speaking, and listening comprehension),introducing them to French and Francophone literatures and cultures. To experience the culture and language firsthand, students can participate in a wide choice of study abroad programs (summer semester and full year) and internships, including the UNC study abroad program in Montpellier.

The French major provides students with a more thorough command of the language, as well as a comprehensive knowledge of the literatures, cultures, and civilization of the francophone world.  French majors are also trained in research methodology in French, Francophone, and European Studies.

French majors have gone on to careers in education, international business, law, journalism, publishing, social work, and health, as well as graduate study in French.  The diverse offerings of the program include courses such as French Civilization, Business French, Advanced Oral and Written French, Introduction to French and Francophone Literatures, The Role of France in Europe Today, and Identities in European Cinema.

The gateway course for the major in French and Francophone Studies is FREN 255, 260 or 262. The requirements consist of nine courses between FREN 255, 260, or 262 and FREN 699.

ONE course in grammar and composition:

  • FREN 300 Review Grammar and Composition

SEVEN additional courses above FREN 204, which must include:

  • At least one course focused on French and Francophone contexts up to 1789
  • At least one course focused on French and Francophone contexts since 1789
  • At least four courses taught in French

Students interested in French and francophone studies should consult the undergraduate advisor for French and francophone studies. Students who plan to teach in public high schools should also see the School of Education for information on teacher certification.

We offer a strong emphasis on European and Francophone Studies and a Language across the Curriculum Program (LAC), that allows students to participate in one-hour one-credit discussion sections in French, in a wide array of courses across the College of Arts and Sciences.

Students unable to undertake a full 9-course French major program may register for a French minor, which will appear on the student’s UNC-CH transcript. The minor consists of FREN 300 and four additional courses numbered above FREN 204, excluding FREN 308FREN 401FREN 402FREN 601FREN 692H. At least two courses (six hours) must be above 300. This option also is available to students in some professional schools.

Click on a class for more information, visit UNC’s catalog page.

French Undergraduate Support

Dorothea Heitsch
French Undergraduate Advisor
Sheena Melton
Undergraduate Student Services Specialist

What Our Students Are Saying

Aditi Kharod
Undergrad Alum
I had an amazing experience taking French classes in this department. All the faculty are so helpful and kind, while pushing students to measurably improve their language skills. I was successfully able to live and study in Geneva, Switzerland for three months during my junior year with the skills I was taught at UNC from the ROMS faculty, and I’m currently a graduate student who will study at Sciences Po Grenoble for the next two semesters taking advanced courses in both English and French. This would not have been possible without the UNC French department and its incredible faculty, including Dr. Dorothea Heitsch, Dr. Nina Furry, Dr. Jessica Tanner, and especially Dr. Valérie Pruvost.
Dana Trumpower
Dana Trumpower
Undergrad Alumni
The ROMS department at UNC left a significant impact on my life that I would have never expected. I began only minoring in French, but with the support of the department, I ended up majoring in French, becoming president of the French National Honor Society, Pi Delta Phi, and writing an Honors Thesis in the department. These experiences drove me to study abroad and then to move to France after college where I felt prepared and excited to work in my second language. Now back in the U.S., still with the encouragement from my UNC professors, I am pursuing my Masters in Education so that I can teach high school French. I hope I can pass on the passion UNC inspired me with to my students.

Learn more about Language Placement and UNC’s Language Requirements.

Be sure to explore opportunities for:

Study Abroad
The Department of Romance Studies strongly encourages all of its students, and especially its majors and minors, to participate in a study abroad experience. Study abroad opportunities are available in a variety of locations for a summer term, a semester, or a full year.
The Department of Romance Studies offers a gateway for research in the Humanities, including the various fields that make up Romance Studies. Research activities include the Honors Thesis, summer research fellowships, or engaging in mentoring projects with professors which lead to opportunities to present papers at conferences or for publication in the University’s undergraduate research journal.
Independent Studies
Independent studies courses (FREN 395, ITAL 395, PORT 396, or SPAN 395) allow students to undertake research on topics that are not available through normal course offerings. Independent studies courses may not be offered simply because a student cannot get into a class or due to difficulties a student may have in their scheduling of classes.
Awards & Honors Societies
Romance Studies has multiple awards and maintains three chapters of National Honor Societies for its students.