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Unit information: French for Medical Studies Level 1 Grade 1 (Ab Initio) in 2015/16

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Unit name French for Medical Studies Level 1 Grade 1 (Ab Initio)
Unit code LANG10009
Credit points 10
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Mrs. Duranton
Open unit status Not open



2nd year of Medical degree (MB ChB Medicine)

School/department Department of French
Faculty Faculty of Arts


This unit focuses on the general structures and functions of the target language and includes practice in the four skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing) in order to enable students to communicate effectively in the target language at a basic level. It also covers cultural and social aspects of the language. The unit will include:

• General communication skills • Grammar foundation • General and Medical vocabulary development • Reading and writing skills • Listening and speaking skills • Social skills • Introduction of basic academic skills and language • Cultural and social aspects of the target language

Unit aims: - To enable students to communicate effectively at a basic level on a variety of general and medical themed topics using the four key language skills, speaking, listening, reading and writing. - To develop student awareness of the general social and cultural background of the language - To enable students to apply their developing language skills into areas related to their field of study (Medical Studies)

Intended learning outcomes

The expected exit level in listening, speaking, reading and writing skills at the end of the 14 week unit is all of Level A1 and some of Level A2 of the Common European Framework.

By the end of the course, the students will:

a. Be able to recognise familiar words and phrases concerning themselves, their family, their immediate environment and concrete surroundings when people speak slowly and clearly (e.g. very basic personal and family information, shopping, local area, basic medical information)

b. Be able to read short and fairly simple texts and find specific information in simple everyday material such as advertisements, prospectuses, menus, timetables, notices, short emails and medical memos, simple prescriptions.

c. Be able to communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar topics and activities (including medical situations). Handle short social exchanges and use series of phrases and sentences to describe in fairly simple terms their family and other people, living conditions, their educational background, their present job, their own health condition and that of others. Give simple advice on health issues and diagnose most common illnesses.

d. Be able to write short, simple notes and messages relating to matters in areas of immediate need (including medical matters); write simple personal letter or a very simple report using some medical vocabulary.

e. Have developed some awareness of the social and cultural background of the country/ies where the target language is spoken (including in medical environments)

f. Be able to apply their developing language skills into areas related to the field of Medical Studies

Teaching details

The communicative approach will be used and learners will be involved in a variety of interactive and stimulating activities in class with maximum use of the target language. The course will be supported by material available on Blackboard allowing students to further develop their skills outside the classroom. Average class size is 10-18 students.

Assessment Details

The unit is assessed on continuous assessment only which is consists of the following:

a) one 20 minute listening assessment in class time (25%) This assessment is linked to intended learning outcomes a, e and f

b) one 30 minute reading assessment in class time (25%) This assessment is linked to intended learning outcomes b, e and f

c) one 10 minute speaking assessment (role-play) in class time (25%) This assessment is linked to intended learning outcomes c, e and f

d) one 250 word guided or semi-guided written task (e.g. writing a letter, advising a patient in a written format, writing a report to a colleague doctor) done at home (25%) This assessment is linked to intended learning outcomes d, e and f

Students will also hand in formative pieces of work (2 reading tasks, 2 written tasks) for which they will receive detailed tutor feedback. There will be one mock listening assessment done in class before the summative assessment and further listening activities will be made available on Blackboard for independent learning and self-assessment. Speaking will be practiced in every class, giving students opportunities to receive regular formative feedback on their progress from their tutor.

Reading and References

Each unit is based on a scheme of work developed by the unit director. Units are accompanied by authentic sources and in-house materials, most of which is made available on Blackboard. Key texts may change from one year to the next.