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Student and tutor module reviews

Bon départ: beginners' French

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  • Points: 30
  • Code: L192
  • Level: 1
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Student reviews

This is a fresh module with good materials. My tutor was excellent.

My one complaint, if I may call it that, is that there was insufficient guidance about the starting level. Having passed O-level French some 40-odd years ago, I wasn't sure whether to do this module or start with 'French studies 1 (intermediate)' (L112). In the event, I hedged my bets and did both. It turned out that I could have coped with starting at the L112 level, but L192 was not a waste of time because I feel that without it, there would have been some gaps which L112 does not cover.

L192 was by no means easy and I think that it would be a challenge for somebody who has no previous experience of the language.

The tutor-marked assignments were fairly brief, which means that it is essential to be concise. The technique has to be learned and the tutor's feedback taken on board. For me, this was at least as important as learning the language.

Christopher Robert Pearson

Course starting: October 2018

Review posted: July 2020

Faculty response

To help decide if this module is for you in terms of your prior experience of French we have a self-assessment quiz that can be accessed here:

I really enjoyed this module, and the tutor I had was brilliant. If you are undecided at what level to start your French at, I would highly recommend starting here as there is quite a big jump in language for the next level.

Course starting: October 2018

Review posted: August 2019

An excellent beginners course although a rapid pace - I would suggest too fast for those with absolutely no knowledge of the language! I had a very good tutor and the online tutorials and face to face were very worth while; but there are no where near enough opportunities to SPEAK the language to build fluency and confidence. VERY disappointed that the OU have now removed CDs from the materials as there is now no opportunity to listen and practice whilst driving!

Course starting: October 2013

Review posted: September 2015

This is a great course however, I think it would be difficult for someone with no previous knowledge of French to engage with. And of course you need to be able to work independently which is tricky when you are learning to speak a language.

That said, I recommend the course to anyone who wants to learn fast and is prepared to put the hours in. It isn't a course where you can coast! But very enjoyable.

Sheila Whyles

Course starting: October 2013

Review posted: May 2015

The course was interesting and sort of simple in a way compared to the intermediate level course I was doing at the same time. For the freshers, it will be important to try to practice with the videos as they help in practical, pronounciation, listening and writing skills. One shouldn't overlook the writing practise because that's where the problem lies.

On the whole I was glad to do the course to complement my Open certicate. I thank the OU for giving me the opportunity to realise this goal though the road is stil long.

Course starting: October 2013

Review posted: December 2014

This was a very enjoyable course, which I did not find too taxing having studied more difficult OU French courses in earlier years. I would certainly recommend L192 to other students.

Muriel Newbould

Course starting: October 2013

Review posted: November 2014

I've tried to learn French using a number of different techniques but this OU module was the most effective method for me. My tutor was an absolute star. She was so nice and approachable and she really went the extra mile for us.

I was often quite tired after work in the evenings when we could chat via the internet with our tutor and colleagues. Few students seemed to make use of this valuable resource. I much preferred that to trudging across London and back home again. There were sometimes some technical glitches which the technology support team were not always very helpful in sorting out.

Most of the tutors in my area are French, which really helps when tuning in your ear. The OU material was varied, fun colourful and the right balance of reading, audio and oral. I found I had to follow the correct cues (i.e. 'now listen to the audio') to get the best from the module.

I found the TMAs and the oral exam pretty easy (not too dissimilar to when I learned French in 1984) I would have welcomed a weekend trip to France to really immerse myself in the language and above all, increase my confidence in speaking the language.

Personally, I think the only way to properly learn a language is to live within the culture but this module came a good second.

Jane Elizabeth England

Course starting: April 2013

Review posted: February 2014

I've read some comments that this is not a beginners course. It is! I had never done French before, but with a lot of hard work I managed some excellent passes. To be honest it felt like I was doing a 60 credit (or more) course, but that's because it is a foreign language. The materials are good but you must go to the tutorials. I wish the OU would do a lot more face to face tutorials. Online tutorials are ok, but.....

Work hard and you'll succeed. Also remember that if you're a beginner, don't expect yourself to be brilliant!

Course starting: November 2009

Review posted: March 2011

I thoroughly enjoyed this course. The materials and tutor were both excellent. I am retired now and the last contact I had with French was at school. I would recommend this course to anyone whether you have a little knowledge of French or none at all. It is a great adventure learning to communicate with a new language. I am continuing with L120 which is the next level in French so wish me luck!

Wendy Wild

Course starting: November 2009

Review posted: December 2010

I would strongly recommend this course to anybody who is in the least tempted to try French, even if they have been put off in the past, perhaps feeling the language might be too difficult. The unit is very practical, the materials are first class and the tutorial support great. I was dogged with health problems during the year but the support I received from my tutor encouraged me to battle on to the point where a pass was achieved.

Starting from zero level a very solid base was built up for future progress in French and nobody should be deterred from tackling this unit if they want to. The only advice I would give is that attendance at tutorials is of particular importance with any foreign language unit, in order to maximise oneĀ“s exposure to the language.

Richard Pealling

Course starting: November 2008

Review posted: July 2010

Please note

Each of the views expressed above is an individual's very particular response, largely unedited, and should be viewed with that in mind. Since modules are subject to regular updating, some of the issues identified may have already been addressed. In some instances the faculty may have provided a response to a comment. If you have a query about a particular module, please contact your Regional Centre.

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