Introduction to French
The Leaving Certificate Examination in French, at both levels, is comprised of three components:
- An oral examination,
- A written paper containing both reading comprehension material and a written production section
- And a listening comprehension test
Breakdown of Leaving Cert French Honours Paper (400 marks)
- Aural (80 marks) 20%
- Comprehensions (120 marks) 30%
- Written Expression (100 marks) 25%
- Oral (100) marks 25%
Breakdown of Leaving Cert French Ordinary Paper (400 marks)
- Aural (100 marks) 25%
- Comprehensions (160 marks) 40%
- Written Expression (60 marks) 15%
- Oral (80 marks) 20%
The oral examination which takes place in the school is administered by external examiners. It takes place in March or April before the Leaving Certificate. It consists of a conversation of approximately twelve minutes duration during which candidates were given the opportunity to display their proficiency in the spoken language. Candidates have the option of bringing in a document of their choice. This could consist of a photograph or picture, a newspaper or magazine article, a literary text or a project. All candidates were marked out of a total of 100 marks, which were allocated as follows:
- Pronunciation (20 marks)
- Vocabulary (20 marks)
- Structures (30 marks)
- Communication (30 marks)
- Try to learn about 5 new words a day. Keep these in a Vocabulary notebook, either organised alphabetically or by topic.
- Listen to French songs and news items. These will help with understanding French and also with pronunciation.
- Practise reading and saying phrases, letters etc. as well as writing them. This will help with recalling material when necessary.
- Make posters for your own home/bedroom wall or label items with post-it notes.
- Practise, practise, practise! It is not possible to cram a language. Frequent practise of oral work in particular will reap the rewards.