It has been shown that academic study and extended residence in a French-speaking country is extremely beneficial. Therefore the French department requires such study for students completing a French major and recommends it for those doing a minor. Students may count up to two French courses from a semester-long study abroad program toward a concentration in French if such courses are at the level of courses taken on campus toward a French concentration. A study abroad program, and its courses, must be approved in advance by the department. All additional courses necessary to meet departmental graduation requirements must be taken at Macalester. Before studying abroad, students should have completed French 305, 306, and one advanced course (topic or 400 level) for their program.
Because study abroad programs vary widely in quality, focus and content, it is imperative that students consult with French Department faculty as they choose their program. The French Department has participated in programs in France such as those with the Institute of American Universities at Avignon and Aix-en-Provence and with the University of Minnesota program at Montpellier. Macalester students have enrolled in programs in Francophone Africa, for example, in Sénégal with the Minnesota Studies in Development (University of Minnesota), and in Cameroon with the School for International Training. In addition, students may participate in other study abroad programs for departmental credit with the permission of the department.
For additional information on how to study in France (including information on applications and student visas), French degrees and training programs