Institute for Field Education

Gateway Program in Detail

The academic structure of the Paris Gateway Program is composed of three courses.

I. Cours de Langue de la Sorbonne.

A diagnostic exam is used to place students at the appropriate level in this language school organized by a branch of the Sorbonne. Class meets two hours daily, five days per week, for twelve weeks. In addition a daily one-hour phonetics class meets during the first four weeks. (syllabus available upon request)

II. Paris-France-Paris : Discovering a nation via its capital.

This course uses the city as its text, making a series of investigations of past and present, highlighting the main questions facing French society, while examining the issues which unite and the differences which divide France and Paris.
The class meets once weekly, for three hours. More than a third of the class meetings take the form of a site visit, to learn about and discuss places important in Paris’ past, present and future (Père Lachaise, CIté d’Immigration, Belleville district,
La Cinémathèque, etc.). (syllabus...)

III. Applied French Practicum.
This third program element provides students the opportunity to improve by applying French beyond the classroom. For the Practicum, students choose from three activity plans to form an individualized learning experience. The Practicum involves approximately sixteen hours of work weekly. (syllabus...)

A. Students choose a type of field experience:

  • conversational internship;
  • volunteer work + research on a subject of French society or culture;
  • research on a topic of current events including interviews, meetings, informational visits to relevant sites, use of libraries, archives and centers of documentation.

B. All students participate in:

  • a language workshop for phonetics and conversation, including use of theater techniques to boost oral confidence.
  • a guided writing exercise to produce either an internship report or an independent field research paper.

(More about Applied French Practicum)

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