French and Welsh (BA)

Within this degree programme, students will have the opportunity to pair a popular European language with the Welsh language, its literature and culture.

By combining these two courses, students will acquire a wide range of transferable skills that will be valuable in a range of future careers. In addition, students will spend their third year in France, practising and developing their acquired language skills.

The Welsh programme is relevant to contemporary Wales and delivered by a school noted for its research quality and impact. The programme's main aim is to produce graduates who have three key attributes: firstly, a thorough academic and practical understanding of the Welsh language, its literature and culture; secondly, a high level of skill in written and spoken Welsh; and thirdly, well-developed employability and creative skills that are highly valued in today's competitive workplace.

The programme has been carefully designed with these attributes in mind, and so offers a wide range of core and optional modules which will provide you with a grounding in language and literature as well as the opportunity to specialise in areas of personal or vocational interest.

France is a major actor on the European and world stage and possesses a rich and sophisticated culture. Its language is more important today than it has ever been.

The course at Cardiff University will enable you to develop your writing skills through a range of exercises including resumes and essays with your oral and aural skills being practised through a varied pool of audio-video material, websites, films and computer programmes. The emphasis on vocational learning means that you will have the option of preparing for the Diplôme de Français des Affaires B2 validated by the prestigious Paris Chamber of Commerce and/or take the DELF/DALF Diplomas awarded by the French Ministry of Education. Both qualifications are highly valued across the world and certify your competency in French language.

Your Year Abroad in the third year provides a great opportunity for you to further improve your French and to fully immerse yourself in another culture.

Key facts

Duration4 years
Typical places availableThe School of Welsh typically has 30 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School of Welsh typically receives 100 applications.
Scholarships and bursaries
Typical A level offerABB, excluding General Studies. Three A-level subjects, including a B in French and a B in Welsh.
Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offerGrade A in the Core plus grades BB at A-level, to include B in French and B in Welsh.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer33 points overall (to include 5 in French at higher level). To include 6 in some higher level subject. Details of Welsh requirements can be obtained from the School of Welsh.
Other qualificationsApplications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Please see detailed admissions and selection criteria for more information.

Detailed alternative entry requirements are available for this course.
QAA subject benchmark

Welsh, French

Academic School
Admissions tutor(s)

Mrs Marie-laure Jones , Admissions Tutor

    Dr Siwan Rosser , Course Administrator

      Dr Rhiannon Marks , Admissions Tutor

        Welsh medium provisionThis course offers elements that are taught through the medium of Welsh. Please contact the Admissions tutor for more information.

        The BA joint honours is either a three-year or (in the case of Welsh and a modern language where the third year is spent abroad) a four-year programme. It has two routes, one for students who have studied Welsh as a first language, and one for students who have studied Welsh as a second language. In the Year 1 Welsh modules these cohorts are taught separately. The students of the two routes come together for some modules in year two, and in the Final Year, both cohorts are taught together. At the end of the programme all successful students receive the same degree.

        The School of Welsh's teaching philosophy is based on helping you develop key skills (linguistic, analytical, creative and employability) while also enabling you to become an independent learner at a high level. This philosophy is reflected in the structure of the BA. For both routes, the emphasis in Year 1 is on developing skills in the fields of language and literature, and all students follow a set number of core modules with an appropriate number of contact hours.

        On both routes, all modules in the School of Welsh are taught through the medium of Welsh.

        In year two, the core linguistic modules concentrate on language skills within both an academic and a vocational context, and include a period of work experience in a workplace in which Welsh is used on a daily basis.

        In the final year, you will undertake an extended essay (4,000 or 8,000 words) or project in Welsh which enables you to use the range of skills that you have developed during the programme and to further your ability to operate as an independent learner. These essays or projects may lead on to further research, or prove to be an effective showcase for your achievements from the point of view of future employers.

        Alongside these core elements, the BA offers numerous optional modules, including several with have direct relevance to specific fields of employment, such as language planning, scriptwriting and translation. Whatever your interests, there should be optional modules that meet your requirements. An attractive feature of our programme is its flexibility – you may specialise in literary studies, medieval or modern, language studies, or you may take a combination of modules reflecting your own particular academic interests and vocational needs.

        Year one

        Students of this course can choose to study modules outside of their allocated School(s) core and optional modules. These can be chosen from modules from participating Academic Schools.

        Year two

        Year three: Sandwich year

        Year four

        Module titleModule codeCredits
        French Language (BA Languages)ML638020 credits
        The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

        School of Welsh
        We provide exciting and challenging teaching in order to help our students succeed in a competitive environment. One of our core principles is that the teaching is informed and led by research. You will therefore learn about the latest ideas from scholars who are contributing to the development and future of their specialist subjects.

        The teaching is usually delivered through the medium of lectures and seminars which provide you with the opportunity to discuss the subject matter in detail within small groups. However, there is also an important role to be played by one on one tutorials, workshops and languages classes.

        Each module is supported by electronic teaching materials shared via Learning Central, part of the University’s virtual learning environment. You will receive personal pastoral care within the School, alongside the University’s central support services for accommodation, counselling, disability, dyslexia, finance and careers.

        Our programmes have been carefully designed and planned to ensure you experience a range of assessment methods including coursework essays, examinations/written class tests, dissertation, portfolios, written reports and oral examinations. This helps to ensure that you can demonstrate your skills to the best of your ability and reach your potential.

        School of Modern Languages
        Lectures provide an overview of the key concepts and frameworks for a topic, equipping students to carry out independent research for the seminars and to develop their own ideas.

        Seminars provide an opportunity for students to explore the ideas outlined in the lecture in a small group environment. Seminars would usually consist of about 15 students and the seminar leader (a member of the teaching team). Seminars may take various formats, including plenary group discussion, small group work and student-led presentations. Seminars offer a rewarding opportunity to engage critically with the key ideas and reading of a topic, and to explore areas of particular interest with an expert in the field. It is vital that students prepare for seminars (undertaking any set reading, developing independent critical thought) in order to gain the maximum benefit from the sessions.

        Lectures and seminars enable students to develop communication and analytical skills, and to develop critical thinking in a supportive environment.

        Essays and examinations are used not only for assessment purposes but also as a means of developing students’ capacities to gather, organise, evaluate and deploy relevant information and ideas from a variety of sources in reasoned arguments. Dedicated essay workshops and individual advice enables students to produce their best work, and written feedback on essays feeds forward into future work, enabling students to develop their strengths and address any weaker areas.

        Dissertation: The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and thereby to acquire detailed knowledge about a particular field of study; to use your initiative in the collection and presentation of material; and present a clear, cogent argument and draw appropriate conclusions.

        Pastoral Care: You will be allocated a personal tutor for the entire period you are at the University. Personal tutors are members of the academic staff who are available to students seeking advice, guidance and help.

        School of Welsh
        The demand for Welsh speakers across a range of industries (including the media, education, local and national government, public and private sectors), means that a degree in Welsh can be a highly valuable for jobs and roles that require bilingual speakers. Many of our graduates are now following careers in areas such as law, politics, media, performing arts, administration and education, and at all levels.

        In 2014, 100% of the School’s graduates were in employment or further study within six months of graduating.

        School of Modern Languages
        In 2013/14, 95% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

        The destinations from the School are often international in nature, with many graduates enjoying their overseas student experience to such an extent that they opt to take time out to travel further, or go abroad on graduation in the hope of securing employment. 

        Of those who choose to remain in the UK, many start work immediately following their studies. Their employment options are varied and many opt to utilise the language skills that they have developed over their degree, in roles such as Translators, Language Assistants, Export Assistants and Proofreaders, working with their languages in organisations such as Bearmach Ltd, the British Council, Global Response and Inter Global.


        4 Year(s)

        Next intake

        September 2016

        Places available

        Typical places available

        The School of European Languages, Translation and Politics admits around 230 students each year to its undergraduate degree programmes.

        The School of Welsh admits around35 students each year to its undergraduate degree programmes.

        Applications received

        Typical applications received

        The School of Welsh = 130

        The School of European Languages, Translation and Politics = 1300


        QAA subject benchmark

        QAA subject benchmark

        Welsh, French

        What are the aims of this Programme?


        Welsh is an exciting, broad and challenging academic discipline which involves producing, presenting and interpreting written texts and oral subjects, as well as the nature and history of the language. Studying the Welsh language fosters an open and flexible mind as well as the ability to consider different concepts. In turn, this will enable students to discuss and interpret modern developments as well as the cultures and values of the past. After studying Welsh, students will be ready to take advantage of all the opportunities that the language offers in today’s world.   

        CardiffUniversity’s School of Welsh has a definite vision with regard to its graduates. This vision is based on the belief that developing excellent academic skills provide the necessary ammunition to pursue a successful career in a wide range of fields. As a result, a typical Welsh graduate will be a successful communicator with the ability to analyse and interpret the world around them in a critical and creative way. They will have the ability to act independently at a high level, and their skills will benefit them in the academic world as well as in the workplace. These skills will be based on a sound knowledge and understanding of the Welsh language, its literature and culture, as well as an informed awareness of its place in the modern world.

        Students at the School of Welsh will study at a vibrant university in the capital city of Wales, where opportunities in the Welsh language are expanding continually. One of the main characteristics of Cardiff University, and also the School of Welsh, is the emphasis placed on research-led teaching. In other words, students at the School of Welsh will be taught by members of staff that produce research of the highest quality, who then use this research when teaching a wide range of areas. Students will also benefit from opportunities to use their skills and knowledge in different contexts, be they academic (including a research project) or practical (including work experience).  

        The knowledge and skills of those students that graduate from the School of Welsh will be suitable for a wide range of occupations, including the following fields: education, media and other creative industries, the heritage industry, local and national government, business and marketing. A degree in Welsh is also excellent preparation for further study, whether in the field of Welsh itself, in other related academic areas or in occupational fields such as education, the law and public relations.

        The BA in Welsh and French conforms to the standards set out in the Credit and Qualification Framework for Walesand the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA)benchmarks. 


        Throughout the programme, students of French will undertake language and non-language study that is pitched at an appropriate level. In French language, year one students build upon core linguistic skills developed at A-level. In year two, a strong focus is placed on preparation for the year abroad, during which students (either on Erasmus programmes, work placements, or -if they study only one language- on the British Council Assistantship scheme in France) are immersed in the target language. In the final year students hone their linguistic skills in terms of expression and translation.

        A similar evolution applies to non-language learning. In year one, students are introduced to Modern French culture, literature, civilisation and politics. In years two and four, greater specialisation is encouraged, with options in French fiction, politics, colonial history and industrial relations as well as francophone cinema, business French, European Cinema, European Literature and Translation as a Profession. Final year students also specialise in an area of their choice and write a dissertation to deepen their understanding and to extend their research and analytical skills. 

        What is expected of me?


        Teaching sessions at the School of Welsh are interactive and practical, and therefore students are expected to attend every one of their classes (be they lectures, workshops, seminars or other sessions). In some cases, for example maternity or disability, we may make alternative arrangements for you.

        BA in Welsh and French modules vary in terms of length, but as a rule they will be 20 credits. Each 20 credit module will require at least two hundred hours of study, including the hours spent attending classes, studying independently, preparing assessments and/or sitting examinations and tests. There will usually be approximately 30 hours of contact with a tutor for each 20 credit module, although this can vary in relation to the nature of the module.  

        Students and members of staff are expected to respect Cardiff University’s Policy on Dignity while Working and Studying, which can be seen here.  You should develop a professional attitude towards your work, including attending personal tutor sessions, checking your e-mails regularly and responding to them, being punctual when attending classes, and informing the School when you are absent. The School of Welsh is committed to helping you throughout your studies, so please tell us if you have any concerns. We will respect your confidentiality on every occasion. 


        Lecture and Seminar attendance is compulsory.  Students will be expected to participate as outlined above and to complete the required reading and self-directed study. Students must undertake independent study ahead of language and non-language classes and must submit homework regularly on time as well as preparing guided study as required. Students who fail to engage may be excluded from the University. Students must reference their essays accurately, avoiding plagiarism, which, if proven, can have serious consequences for a student. Advice is provided by tutors and in handbooks on how to avoid plagiarism. Students are required to undertake a full academic year of study in France or the French-speaking part of Switzerland or Belgium, except in instances where students have completed their secondary education in France.

        Students are expected to adhere to the Cardiff University policy on Dignity at Work and Study.

        Students will be advised during year abroad briefings of the need to adhere to Cardiff University’s Code of Practice on Study away from Cardiff.

        How is this Programme Structured?

        This is a four year full time programme, consisting of 120 credits a year.

        Will I need any specific equipment to study this Programme?

        Not applicable

        What skills will I practise and develop?


        This degree programme will allow you to develop many valuable skills. Some of them will be specific to the field of Welsh, while others will be more general and very relevant to the workplace. These include the following skills: communication and presenting information, ideas and debates (orally and in writing, individually and as part of a team); using information technology (linguistic software, word processing, data bases, the internet); analysing and presenting numerical information; working in a group and developing interpersonal skills; identifying, recording and communicating relevant attainments with regard to your career; managing your own learning (including time-management); showing a commitment to continuous learning and development.  

        The project/extended essay will help you to gain in confidence when working independently and will give you the opportunity to gain experience of a wide range of practical research skills. The sessions with a director will allow you to develop detailed discussion skills and to develop original ideas. 


        Students will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both those which are discipline specific and more generic ‘employability skills’.

        Through the programme, the students will:

        -develop their linguistic skills, as well as a broad appreciation of the culture, literature, and history of France and Francophone countries.

        -be presented with numerous opportunities to extend their communication and presentation skills;

        -learn to develop arguments and critique evidence, using oral and written communication,

        -enhance their interpersonal relations through participation in tutorials and classes.

        -develop their capacity both for independent and co-operative working

        -enhance their employability prospects by undertaking a challenging year abroad, and, where appropriate, taking up opportunities afforded to them to act as staff-student representatives, UNISTAFF or student ambassadors teaching French in local schools

        -use communication and information technologies for the retrieval and presentation of information

        -enhance their capacity for self-reliance, the taking of initiatives and time management

        - reflect on their own learning and make use of constructive feedback

        - manage their own learning self-critically

        How will I be taught?


        The BA in Welsh and French uses several different methods of learning and teaching. During your degree, you will attend lectures, contribute to seminars and group work, complete practical tasks, undertake a period of work experience and complete an extended piece of independent work under the guidance of a tutor. The learning will usually take place in the Humanities Building, although it is possible that you will undertake field work away from the campus. 

        The programme is based on a range of core (mandatory) and optional modules. Usually, a module will include a series of lectures or workshops supported by seminars for smaller groups, where the field in question can be discussed in more detail. Every year, you will be required to study 60 credits in the School of Welsh and 60 credits in French. Most modules in the Schoolof Welsh are 20 credits in length. Students studying Welsh and a modern language will spend the third year of their degree programme abroad, before returning to complete their final year.  

        There are two routes in the first year, one for students that have studied Welsh as a first language and the other for students that have studied Welsh as a second language. Both routes will include core modules in the fields of literature and language. There will be an opportunity to discuss literature from different periods and to look at the Welsh language in terms of its grammar and its place in modern Wales. The first year will equip you with the research and presentation skills that you will need to complete your degree.

        Furthermore, during the second year, you will follow a further module (or modules in the case of the Welsh as a second language route) on the Welsh language and the different ways in which it is used in today’s Wales, including a period of work experience. You will also follow several optional modules in fields of your choice.

        In the final year, you will choose further optional modules, as well as writing an extended essay or project on a subject of your choice – either 5,000 words (20 credits) or 10,000 words (40 credits). 


        Delivery will be via lectures, seminar preparation and participation, independent and guided study in language laboratories, independent reading, preparation of essays and presentations, feedback on essays and presentations, and revision sessions for examinations.

        Students will also benefit from regular feedback from their Personal Tutor at key moments of their language degree.

        Students interested in teaching may have the possibility of completing an internship teaching French in a UK secondary school. All Joint Honours students must spend a minimum of 4.5 months in France, Switzerland or Belgium. Students may go abroad on the Erasmus scheme, or on work placement. Students working abroad need to write one long essay projects on relevant contemporary French issues, with the help of a tutor in Cardiff. 

        How will I be assessed?


        During your time studying for a BA in Welsh degree, you will be assessed using each one of the following methods:

        • essays
        • examinations
        • reports
        • individual oral presentations
        • self-appraisals
        • extended essay or project (up to 5,000 or 10,000 words)

        Depending on your degree route and your choice of modules, you could also be assessed using the following methods:

        • classroom tests
        • group presentations
        • portfolios (of linguistic exercises or creative work)

        There will also be opportunities to prepare formative tasks. These are tasks that do not count towards your final mark but which give you the opportunity to receive feedback on your progress. These tasks can be oral presentations during seminars, drafts of essays, short written pieces or computer-based tasks. The feedback can be in oral, written or electronic form.

        The School of Welsh welcomes applications from disabled students; we may be able to offer alternative assessment methods in some cases. 


        These programmes are assessed by examinations, formative and summative essays, and a wide range of other forms of continuous assessment (including regular submission of translation passages from and into French, summaries, language essays, presentations, and class tests). Other forms of assessment include the writing of reports during and following work placements/ internships. Mock examinations are also used as a way of gauging progress ahead of more formal assessment.

        Students submitting extenuating circumstances may sit examinations in alternative venues and may be accorded extra time. Students who have already been educated in the French secondary school system may be eligible for exemption from the year abroad.


        Students will receive written feedback on written assessments, and oral feedback on assessed presentations and their contributions to seminars. The opportunity to understand and use feedback constructively will also be provided through regular meetings with Personal Tutors at key moments every year.

        How will I be supported?


        We will support your studies in several ways. Firstly, you will have a personal tutor who will meet you at least three times a year to discuss your progress and any other matters that arise. You will be given punctual feedback on all your assessments (including examinations), and your personal tutor will be able to help you make effective use of the feedback in order to improve your work in the future. Several modules also include formative assessments. You will receive feedback on these assessments, but they will not count towards your final grade. 

        Every module will use the Learning Central website, which is CardiffUniversity's Virtual Learning Environment. Through the Learning Central site, you will have access to materials that are relevant to the module, such as multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises, discussion circles etc.                             

        You will have an opportunity to reflect on your progress and the skills that you have developed through a section of Learning Central called Personal Development Planning. There, with help from your personal tutor, you will be able to record your achievements in different fields (whether they are part of the curriculum or not).

        Furthermore, centrally, the university offers a range of services to support you, including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.


        The School makes full use of Learning Central and students have the opportunity to improve their study and research skills within the programmes.

        Academic Tutors have office hours for students to meet and discuss any learning queries as well as the opportunity in seminars.  The School has a wide programme of visiting speakers and guest lectures and students are encouraged to attend.

        In addition, the School’s robust pastoral care system, coupled with excellent counselling available from the Student Support Centre, helps to ensure that students encountering learning or other personal difficulties are given the proper guidance and support.

        In languages, students are also given a reading week each semester during which they are given guided study and afforded an opportunity to catch up on assessed work, readings and revision. These reading weeks are used by staff both to visit students on their year abroad and to review the quality of learning provision offered by Socrates partner institutions. 

        What are the Learning Outcomes of this Programme?


        A typical BA in Welsh and French graduate will be able to do the following:

        ·         demonstrate intellectual skills that enable close reading, description, analysis and the production of different types of texts (including producing texts in the field of creative writing in the case of some students)

        ·         analyse the core role of language in the process of creating meaning, and the ability to appreciate the affective force of language

        ·         appreciate how cultural preconceptions affect the process of forming an opinion

        .         evaluate relevant texts, concepts and theories in the field of Welsh and discuss them by using appropriate vocabulary

        ·         show an understanding of a range of texts from different historical periods and from different genres

        ·         show a good understanding of the position and importance of the Welsh language in the modern workplace

        ·         implement the knowledge, understanding and skills that they have developed:

        o   in the workplace, by completing a period of work experience and a critical evaluation of the experience

        o   by completing an essay or extended project which is a product of independent study under the guidance of a tutor, showing the relevance of that work in relation to the next step of your career

        ·         utilise basic numerical skills when evaluating data in relation to the Welsh language

        ·         use information technology to present and analyse materials in an effective and polished manner, including the use of software to correct and improve the language

        ·         produce written and oral Welsh of a high standard

        ·         use other written linguistic registers, orally and in writing, in different contexts, including the workplace


        Graduates from this Programme will be able to:

        • produce a high level of fluency in oral and written French
        • assess the central role of language in the process of creating meaning and knowledge
        • demonstrate intellectual skills which allow detailed reading, assessment, and production of texts of different types
        • appreciate how language and culture feed into each other to generate meaning and understanding
        • evaluate and critically discuss texts, concepts and theories relevant to the field of French Studies
        • demonstrate an understanding of a range of texts (including film) from different historical periods and from different genres
        • demonstrate a good understanding of the position and importance of French language and culture in the modern world
        • use information technology to present and analyse materials in an effective manner, including using software to check and improve language

        Other information


        The following are amongst the most significant characteristics of this degree programme:

        ·      the opportunity to follow a degree programme that develops skills that are relevant to both the academic world and the workplace.

        ·      the emphasis on practical research skills, that will benefit you throughout your career

        ·      the emphasis placed on independent learning in a supportive environment

        ·      the experience of being taught by staff that will recognise you as an individual

        ·      the experience of being taught by lecturers that undertake original research work of the highest quality and push the field’s boundaries


        For students who do not have the required entry grades for Single and Joint Honours French, there will be a pathway into this degree for Beginners from 2014-15.

        Students taking the Single and Joint Honours French programme at Cardiff may be particularly interested in the following features that are likely to increase their employability:

        ·         the possibility for students of Business French to sit the internationally recognised examination of the Paris Chamber of Commerce

        ·         the chance for students interested in teaching to undertake an internship teaching French in a UK secondary school

        ·         the possibility for students studying only one foreign language to teach in a French school during their year abroad

        .          the opportunity for all students of French to organise, on their own initiative, a suitable work placement in a French-speaking country. 

        Admissions tutors

        Mrs Marie-laure Jones , Admissions Tutor

          Dr Siwan Rosser , Course Administrator

            Dr Rhiannon Marks , Admissions Tutor

              Key Information Sets (KIS) make it easy for prospective students to compare information about full or part time undergraduate courses, and are available on the Unistats website.