Thursday 9 February, 2006


Filed under: Claire's Entries — claire @ 4:39 pm

I had an entrance test for a French language course at the University today, I just returned. The course is designed for foreign students who have already studied some French and are enrolled at the Uni in a French course and need to improve their French. Also minimum qualification required is a Degree! We figured with no other options available to me here in Lille I had to give it a go and maybe 2 Diplomas equal a Degree? I did no extra preparation for the test, I figured it was best to do my worst as I wanted to know if they thought it was beyond my capabilities. All instructions were in French of course and as well as the forms and test paper instructions. OMG the test paper, it was at least ten pages long and I know I couldn’t of made it past the first page. As people were completing the written test the teacher was meeting with each of us individualy to have a conversation, she meet with me third. By this time having read the paper, heard the level of French the other prospective students spoke and seen how rapidly they were working through the paper I was ready to get up and walk out. I told her that it was much too difficult for me and she said she understood and then she left, I got up to go also. I wasn’t upset as not having studied French formally and having only had a handful of private lessons I knew it was a long shot and was just pleased I made the effort to check it out. As I was leaving the teacher returned with a big smile and said I must not leave, there was no need, the test paper that had been handed was for their most advanced course and she gave me a different test paper. She explained it was the test paper for their lowest level course and it required me to pass it well to be accepted. After the last test paper this one looked sooooooo good, even if it was 5 pages long it didn’t matter I could understand all the text!! It asked for some basic sentence and question structure, a lot of conjugation and my pet hate gender identification, which was fine if there were clues within the sentence but otherwise I had to guess mostly. When she came around to mark it amazingly I had gotten that whole section right, I couldn’t believe it, I think because I said them in my head and picked what sounded familiar or right, the French are obsessed with things sounding right and will turn their grammar rules on their heads to make something sound right. Anyway I got in and the course starts at the end of the month and finishes at the end of June with an exam after. My only concern, besides how I will manage to discipline myself, is that we are away for a week of every month during the course. I am happy to improve my French but I will not sacrifice travel opportunities for it. Me likie travel way too much!!!

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