Université de Moncton
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Q & A

University of Moncton no longer offers Conversational French courses. True or false?

True and false.

On the campus of Moncton, there are no French Conversation courses during the day through the regular academic year. Four courses in written French are offered in the "Groupe-pont" program.

However, French Conversation courses are offered by the Continuing Education department, as evening courses during Fall and Winter and during a five-week summer session.

There is also an International School of French on the Shippagan campus, providing courses all year long at all levels, from beginners' to advanced. Contact them if you want to learn to speak French or if you want to improve your oral skills.

You have to be already bilingual to study at U de M. True or false?

True and false.

True, if you want to study for a degree on a full-time basis or to take courses in the "Groupe-pont". All regular courses at U.de M. are given in French, and you are expected to understand what is said and to be able to communicate well enough to be understood. However, a perfect mastery of the oral French is not required and, if you are taking courses in the "Groupe-pont", you will improve your spoken French at the same time as you are working on your written skills.

False, if you want to take the courses at Shippagan (CIAF) or with the Continuing Education at the Moncton Campus.

At U de M, it takes more time for a non-Francophone student to get a degree than a Francophone. True or false?


Not any more. It's true that in the past, students in the "Groupe-pont" program faced more challenges in applying their French credits; they had to take at least two courses in French with Francophone students after they had completed the six courses in the "Groupe-pont" program. Not any more! Since September 2003, non-Francophone students completing the "Groupe-pont" program do not have to take additional French courses. And now, only four courses are required in the "Groupe-pont" instead of six in the past.

Since Francophone students must take at least two courses (and often more) in French to meet the language requirement of their programs, the time required for both groups to obtain a degree is practically identical.

As a non Francophone student, I have to take more French courses than a Francophone. True or false?


Since 2004, contrary to previous requirements, non-Francophone students no longer have to take additional French courses once they completed the four mandatory courses in the "Groupe-pont" program. They are not required to take FRAN 1903, which is mandatory for Francophone students, or any other FRAN courses. (Refer to Article 6.2.3 of the university's Rules and Regulations.)

Of course, if you intend to complete a degree in Translation, Journalism (Info-Com) or perhaps Education (under study by the Faculty of Education), or if you intend to do your major in French, you should expect to have more French-language course requirements, due to the specific nature of these programs and their internal language requirements.

I’ll get low marks because of my French. True or false?


During the first year, while you take the courses in the "Groupe-pont" program, and during the second year, while you are studying full time in your regular program, you will have a special status as a "non-Francophone-student" (Regulation 6.2.5). This status allows you to write your essays and exams in English and ensures that you that you will not fail or be penalized because of weaknesses in your written French.

Some professors prefer that you write all your papers in French, but they do not deduct marks for language or style because of your special status. Each approach has its advantages. Speak with your professors and contact the person in charge of the "Groupe-pont" program if you have questions or concerns about your status.

In the Groupe-pont program, I’ll have to repeat what I’ve already learned in high school. True or false?


Absolutely not! The content of the "Groupe-pont" courses is very different from what you learned in public and high school. For instance, the composition course is entirely new in its approach and contents; it is designed to help you create your own written style and develop techniques to revise your own writing. Obviously, the advanced grammar course includes some review of basic French grammar, but it moves beyond the rules taught in school in order to develop a sound knowledge of written language. Rest assured that you'll be learning something new every day!

Can I count on some type of help with my French during my studies at U de M?


First, you can definitely count on the help of your French professor in the French courses you take. You will also have his or her help for your written assignments and essays throughout your bachelor's degree.

It's difficult to take courses in French at U de M if you are not a Francophone. True or false?

Well, this is true

In every program, the first year is difficult because you are learning specific vocabulary that every first year student must learn. At the university level, you'll see that most of the words or expressions are very similar in French and in English. In any case, if you are admitted into a program at U de M, it means the person responsible for assessing your language proficiency at the time of your admission is confident that you will be able to pursue studies in courses given in French. You can trust him or her.

Most of the time, you will be able to find books in English in the library that cover the same specialized subject matter as the French texts used in your course.

Is there a difference between the French courses for Francophones and the course in the “Groupe-pont” program for non Francophones?


Francophone students do not have the same "weaknesses" in French as non-Francophones. The FRLS (Groupe-pont) courses take those differences into account and tailor the content of the courses to cover the points that will help non-Francophones to write and express themselves better in French. In the past, many students asked to take their courses with Francophone students and ended up repeating courses or receiving low marks. Several students took the time to express their regret for not taking the "Groupe-pont" to the Department. Comparing their performance to those in the "Groupe-pont" encouraged us to reorganize the courses. With the current program structure and the new regulations, there is no longer any advantage for non-Francophones to enrol directly in the regular program when they begin their studies.

Is it easy for non-Francophones to get bursaries at U de M?


Our university has special bursaries for first year non-Francophone students. It is, however, important to apply for them as soon as possible. Contact the "Service des bourses et de l'aide financière" aidefin@umoncton.ca or call 858 3731

Do I get university credits for my French courses?


You will receive university credits for the courses in the "Groupe-pont". These courses meet the language requirement in all undergraduate programs at the university.

If you choose not to continue your studies at U de M, you should be able to transfer thoee credits to a program at another institution. However, you will need to discuss this further with the Registrar's Office and the relevant department at the university to which you are applying. It is a good idea to keep the descriptions of couses you have taken for future reference.

What French courses will I be taking during my first year at U de M?

It depends.

If you are in the "Groupe-pont" bridging program:

  1. You will take FRLS 3512 (Advanced Grammar I) and FRLS 3542 (Composition I) during the Fall semester. If you decide to do a Minor in French as a Second Language, you will also take FRLS 3532 (Stylistics) on the Web.
  2. You will enroll in four courses (three if you take the Stylistics course) from among the first year courses offerings of the undergraduate program you have chosen.

The same structure applies to the Winter semester, and you will enroll in FRLS 3522 (Advanced Grammar II) and FRLS 4512 (Composition II). The course for the Minor in FSL will be FRLS 4522.

No other French courses are necessary once the four courses in the "Groupe-pont" program have been successfully completed, unless you decide to enroll in a program in which mastering the French language is a requirement.

If you are not in the "Groupe-pont" program: You will take FRAN 1903 during the Fall semester and then will take as many courses in the FRAN group that the chair of the "Secteur langue" decides are necessary (a maximum of three, if you successfully complete each one).

I’ll be a student of the “Faculté des arts et des sciences sociales” during my first year at U de M, right?


As a student in the "Groupe-pont" program, you will be studying in the "Faculté des arts et des sciences sociales," even if you take 2/3 of your courses in a program in another Faculty of your choice. Your file, with the accumulated credits, will be transferred to that Faculty at the end of the first year. If you do not have the prerequisites to enroll in a particular programme, the year in the "Groupe-pont" program gives you a chance to complete your requirements and to accumulate credits towards your program.

I’ll be able to take part in activities for students in my discipline, even if I am in the “Groupe-pont” program in the Faculté des arts et des sciences sociales, right?


The fact that you are, for the first year, a student of the "Faculté des arts et des sciences sociales", will not affect your participation in meetings and social gatherings aimed at students in your major or your chosen program. The Registrar's Office will send a list of students who are in the "Groupe-pont" to each program, asking them to include you on their list. If you feel that you are missing out on certain activities or messages from your program, speak to your "Groupe-pont" professor.

I’ll have problems registering in courses in my discipline while I'm a student in the Groupe-pont. True or false?

True and false.

Because of enrollment restrictions applied to certain courses, students in the "Groupe-pont" may find it difficult to register in certain courses in their chosen program, especially if they register online in a limited-enrollment course. The computer doesn't know about your particular situation. However, the situation should improve once the Registrar sends a list of students in the "Groupe-pont" program to each program unit. If you have trouble registering online, contact the chair of the department offering the course you want to take, or contact the "Groupe-pont" program to work out the formalities.

If I feel confident enough, should I take courses with Francophones instead of the ones in the “Groupe-pont” program?

This is probably not a good idea.

If you feel proficient enough to take French courses in the regular program with Francophone students, you may request a written test that will determine if this is indeed the case. However, many students have come back to us after one or two years in a regular program, and have complained that they were allowed to by-pass the "Groupe-pont" program. In the past, the system did penalize students in the "Groupe-pont" program because of a number additional requirements placed on them. Today, the situation has changed and a non-Francophone student does not have to take any more courses in French than most Francophone students. The advantage of the "Groupe-pont" program is that the courses are tailored to specific linguistic needs of non-Francophones, while the regular French courses are tailored to those of Francophones who have completed their studies at a French-language high school.

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