French Language & Culture
Aix-en-Provence and Paris, France
Global Seminar - Fall, 2019
This four-week Fall Global Seminar will begin in Aix-en-Provence (usually simply called Aix), a small, classically Provençal town, famous for being home to Cézanne. Three universities and several French-language schools for international students produce a very strong student presence. Aix has a lot to offer. It is a quiet, clean and comfortable city. The city center is mostly pedestrian and, though it is quite small (you can cross the center in 15 min by foot), offers long hours of nice walks. As in all Provençal towns, the city center consists of narrow streets, lined with interesting buildings from 17th century hotels to paved plazas.
From Aix, we will take a high-speed train to Paris where we will continue with the program. Known as the City of Lights, with its vibrant artistic, literary, and culinary offerings, Paris has much to offer. Among Paris's important museums and cultural institutions are the most visited art museum in the world, the Louvre, as well as the Musée d'Orsay, noted for its collection of French Impressionist art, and the Musée National d'Art Moderne in the Pompidou Centre, the largest collection of modern and contemporary art in Europe. The central area of the city along the Seine River is classified as a UNESCO Heritage Site, and includes many notable monuments, including Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Palais and Petit Palais, and the Basilica of Sacré-Cœur on Montmartre.
Students on this program will have the truly unique opportunity to significantly improve their communicative skills in French. Along with daily classes and assignments, students will be encouraged to practice their speaking and listening comprehension in the course of regular day-to day activities. Afternoon activities and excursions will showcase the arts, culture, and French language.
Both cities are perfect gateways for excursions to significant sites in and around Paris and in the Provence region of southern France.
* FRE 1103 or equivalent, three years of high school French, or instructor's permission
* GPA: 2.8
On this seminar, students may take 3, 5 or 8 credits:
FRE 2100 Intermediate French Abroad (3 credits). Classroom work will focus on building the foundation for improving students' communicative skills in French: correct pronunciation, vocabulary building, and review of important grammatical structures at an intermediate level. Students' writing skills will be honed by keeping a daily, graded journal in French, and their interactive conversational abilities will be enhanced by daily small-group sessions with a French graduate student intern. Assignments will include tasks that encourage students to practice their speaking and listening comprehension in the course of regular day-to day activities like purchasing picnic items at an open-air market, ordering food in a café or crêperie, buying clothes, negotiating directions on the métro, or understanding a church service in French. Students' proficiency levels will be assessed at the beginning and end of the program.
FRE 3100 Advanced French Abroad (3 credits). Classroom work will focus on building the foundation for improving students' communicative skills in French: correct pronunciation, vocabulary building, and review of important grammatical structures at an advanced level. Students writing skills will be honed by keeping a daily, graded journal in French, and their interactive conversational abilities will be enhanced by daily small-group sessions with a French graduate student intern. Assignments will include tasks that encourage students to practice their speaking and listening comprehension in the course of regular day-to day activities like purchasing picnic items at an open-air market, ordering food in a café or crêperie, buying clothes, negotiating directions on the métro, or understanding a church service in French. Students' proficiency levels will be assessed at the beginning and end of the program.
EUR 3500 European Civilization (5 credits). Understanding and appreciating French society through the arts will be the focus of this course. With tours of museums, historic sites, and places of worship as well as attendance at cultural activities, market excursions, and group meals, students will experience Paris as their "classroom beyond the classroom." Class lectures and tours will be in French with readings in both French and English. Students will be encouraged to begin their research paper on a French cultural, historic, or linguistic topic of interest to them prior to departure.
TENTATIVE program dates:
August 18: Depart USA on independent flights
August 19: Arrive in Marseille (airport code MRS). Transportation from Marseille airport to Aix-en-Provence provided for arrivals between 7am and 7pm.
August 19-29: Classes and activities in Aix-en-Provence and surrounding area.
August 30: High speed train to Paris
August 31-September 17: Classes and activities in Paris and surrounding area
September 18: Program ends. Flights may be booked any time from Paris (airport code CDG)
Housing and meals
Students will be accommodated in centrally located shared apartments with other SPU students. On average, there are two to six students per apartment; some apartments may have up to eight students. Typical bedrooms accommodate two students; some may accommodate three students. Each apartment is equipped with shared bathrooms and a common living room area. Bedding, bed linens, and one bath towel per student is provided.
A meal plan is not included, however, apartments have fully equipped kitchens (including pots, pans, dishes, silverware, cups, and glasses.) There are plenty of markets and affordable restaurant and deli options in Paris, and we recommend students budget $150-200 per week for meal expenses. Three group meals will be provided.
|ESTIMATED Program Fee
|$4,500 + $300 confirmation payment (administrative fee)
||3,5, or 8
Program fees include:
- Lodging - student housing in Aix, homestays in Paris
- 3-4 group meals. Breakfast and 2 weekly dinners in Paris homestays
- Ground transportation, including airport pick-up and unlimited Paris metro pass
- Paris city tour and Seine boat tour
- Transportation between Paris and Aix-en-Provence
- Entrance fees and transportation to all group cultural and sightseeing activities
- Medical insurance for the duration of the program
Estimated expenses not included in program fees:
- Tuition: Credits earned are part of regular fall tuition
- Airfare to France: $1,000 - $1,400
- Meals: Approx. $200 per week
- Personal expenses (souvenirs, snacks, activities, etc.) - varies
- Trip cancellation/interruption insurance - varies
*Costs are estimated and may be adjusted in response to unanticipated price changes or foreign currency fluctuations.
Students on the France Global Seminar may be eligible for financial aid, including state and federal aid. Check with Student Financial Services to determine your exact aid eligibility before applying.
It is your responsibility to book and pay for a flight to France, as airfare is not included in the program fees to give you maximum flexibility and control.
Please do not book your flights until you have been accepted to the program and your place has been confirmed by the study abroad office
. As a courtesy, we will identify a 'preferred' flight that students may book through SPU's travel agent or on their own. Specific information about flights will be provided in your study abroad account. There is no chaperone to accompany students on their flight(s) from the US, but students will be given a time frame to arrive and will be greeted at the airport and transported to student housing. Airport transportation is not provided at the end of the program in Paris, but staff in Paris will advise students of the best transportation options..
On this program, students will arrive into Marseille, France (airport code MRS), and at program end will depart from Paris (airport code CDG). Students who plan to arrive early will be responsible for their own transportation to meet up with the group in Aix-en-Provence. We will provide advice for the best transportation options.
Once your flights are booked, you must complete the flight information questionnaire in your study abroad account at least 3 weeks prior to departure, providing the study abroad office with flight numbers and times.
Please note that if it is necessary for SPU to cancel the program or if you have reason to cancel after your ticket has been purchased, SPU is not responsible for reimbursing the cost of your ticket. Therefore, we strongly encourage you to purchase flight insurance. We are happy to advise you on cancellation insurance options.
Here are some helpful search engines for finding flights:
Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies
Office: Marston Hall 220
Dr. Michelle Beauclair, Associate Professor of French & Co-Chair of the Department of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics, teaches courses in French language and French & Francophone literatures and cultures. Dr. Beauclair has participated in over a dozen study abroad programs in France.