French and Gaelic Studies, MA

French and Gaelic Studies, MA

Introduction

French and Gaelic Studies at Aberdeen gives you the benefits of combining a major modern European language and culture with in-depth study of Scotland’s oldest living language and its origins and culture. You will graduate with language, intellectual and cultural skills, plus a European perspective to make you extremely attractive to employers in many areas of business, arts, education, tourism or media.

Study Information

At a Glance

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
MA
Duration
60 months
Study Mode
Full Time
Start Month
September
UCAS Code
QR51
Degree marketing image

French at Aberdeen has an outstanding reputation, gaining the highest possible rating of ‘Excellent’ in the last national Teaching Quality Assessment. You will add to your growing language skills with courses in contemporary civilisation and culture, Francophone and post-colonial studies, philosophy, history, sociology, linguistics, theatre and most genres and periods of literature from the middle ages to the present day. You will be taught by staff recognised internationally for their research, from Renaissance studies to the politics of culture and difference in contemporary France.

We have been teaching Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) and culture for a hundred years, led by teachers and researchers passionate about Gaelic and whose work directly influences Scottish policy on keeping Gaelic alive, healthy and important in Scotland today. Gaelic at Aberdeen is the ideal combination of tradition, location, programme, quality and inspiring teachers for you as a beginner or native speaker to enjoy exploring Gaelic language, literature and culture and its place in our world today. Our students and staff play an important role in Scotland’s Gaelic-interest community through activities, networks and organisations.

As an integral part of your 5-year programme, you will spend the whole of year three developing your language skills as a teaching assistant or visiting student in a French-speaking country.

Opportunities for graduates fluent in French are very good - as are those for graduates fluent in Scottish Gaelic. Your career options will be wide, including teaching, business and tourism. Gaelic development, arts management and librarianship are all great options and the commitment in Scotland to Gaelic broadcasting also brings graduate opportunities.

What You'll Study

Year 1

Compulsory Courses

Academic Writing for Language & Literature (AW1008)

This compulsory evaluation is designed to find out if your academic writing is of a sufficient standard to enable you to succeed at university and, if you need it, to provide support to improve. It is completed on-line via MyAberdeen with clear instructions to guide you through it. If you pass the evaluation at the first assessment it will not take much of your time. If you do not, you will be provided with resources to help you improve. This evaluation does not carry credits but if you do not complete it this will be recorded on your degree transcript.

Getting Started at the University of Aberdeen (PD1002)

This course, which is prescribed for level 1 undergraduate students (and articulating students who are in their first year at the University), is studied entirely online, takes approximately 5-6 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks.

Topics include orientation overview, equality and diversity, health, safety and cyber security and how to make the most of your time at university in relation to careers and employability.

Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’.

Gaelic Scotland (GH1015)

15 Credit Points

Gaelic is Scotland's oldest living language. In this introductory course you will learn about the Gaels, their history and their role in the shaping modern Scotland. You will also learn about how Gaelic language and culture became minoritised in its own country. Students will learn learn about various contemporary initiatives that are aimed at saving and promoting this indigenous language and culture and this will be compared to minority languages and cultures elsewhere in the world.

Optional Courses

Select ONE of the following options:

Beginner

  • Beginners French Language 1 (FR1028)
  • Beginners French Language 2 (FR1528)
  • Introduction to Literature and Culture of Modern France 1 (FR1021) AND/OR Introduction to Literature and Culture of Modern France in Context (FR1527)
  • Gaelic for Beginners 1A (GH1007)
  • Gaelic for Beginners 1B (GH1507)

Qualified

  • Qualified French Language 1 (FR1029)
  • Qualified French Language 2 (FR1529)
  • Literature and Culture of Modern France 1 (FR1022) AND/OR Literature and Culture of Modern France in Context (FR1526)
  • Gaelic Language 1A (GH1013)
  • Gaelic Language 1B (GH1513)

Plus, select further courses of choice to make up 120 credit points

Beginners French Language 1 (FR1028)

15 Credit Points

This intensive language course is designed for students who have little or no previous knowledge of French.

Beginners French Language 2 (FR1528)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the work done in FR1028, providing students with an adequate command of French language to allow them the possibility of continuing their studies into level 2 and Honours.

Introduction to Literature and Culture of Modern France 1 (FR1021)

15 Credit Points

This course offers students who are registered for the Beginners' course in French language an introduction to twentieth and twenty-first century French culture and society through the study of films, short prose texts and poetry. The course is organised around the broad themes of childhood and adolescence, gender, sexuality and love and marginalisation in contemporary France. The texts will be studied in translation or with subtitles.

Introduction to Literature and Culture of Modern France In Context (FR1527)

15 Credit Points

This course offers students who are registered for the beginners' course in French language an advanced introduction to twentieth and twenty-first century French and Francophone culture and society, focusing on the occupation of France during World War II and the experience of colonialism and post-colonialism. Written texts will be studied in translation or with vocabulary help and films will be studied with subtitles.

Gaelic for Beginners 1a (GH1007)

15 Credit Points

This is an 11-week course in the modern Scottish Gaelic language for students who have little or no prior experience of the language, or for students with no formal qualifications in Gaelic.

You will learn Gaelic through a mixture of interactive language classes, a class which focuses on conversational skills, and a programme of homework exercises, together with self-directed learning.

By the end of the course, you will be able to speak, read, write and understand Gaelic at a basic level and you will have mastered a large working vocabulary.

Gaelic for Beginners 1b (GH1507)

15 Credit Points

This is an 11-week course in the modern Scottish Gaelic language for students who have completed GH1007 Gaelic for Beginners 1A.

You will attend three interactive language classes and one conversation class each week, as well as undertaking self-directed learning.

By the end of the course you will be expected to have mastered a large working vocabulary and to be competent in understanding and using most of the major structures of the language.

Qualified French Language 1 (FR1029)

15 Credit Points

This course is intended for students who have studied French to Higher or equivalent level. It will enable them to consolidate and extend their knowledge of French, written and spoken.

Qualified French Language 2 (FR1529)

15 Credit Points

This course is intended for students who have studied French to the equivalent of Scottish Higher or beyond. Building on the work done in the first semester, it seeks to enable students to consolidate and extend their knowledge of French, written and spoken.

Literature and Culture of Modern France 1 (FR1022)

15 Credit Points

This course offers students with intermediate or good knowledge French language an introduction to twentieth and twenty-first century French culture and society through the study of films, short prose texts and poetry. The course is organised around the broad themes of childhood and adolescence, gender, sexuality and love and marginalisation in contemporary France.

Literature and Culture of Modern France in Context (FR1526)

15 Credit Points

This course offers students with intermediate or good knowledge French language an advanced introduction to twentieth and twenty-first century French and Francophone culture and society, focusing on the occupation of France during World War II and the experience of colonialism and post-colonialism.

Gaelic Language 1a (GH1013)

15 Credit Points

This is a Gaelic language course for students who are relatively fluent in the language already and have studied it to at least Higher in school (Higher Gaelic or Gàidhlig) or have studied it to a similar level elsewhere.

Gaelic Language 1b (GH1513)

15 Credit Points

This is the second-half of the first year Gaelic language course for students who are relatively fluent in the language already and have studied it to at least Higher in school (Higher Gaelic or Gàidhlig) or have studied it to a similar level elsewhere.

Year 2

Compulsory Courses

Gaelic Folklore (GH2006)

15 Credit Points

This course is an introduction to the wonderful world of Gaelic folklore. The course will look at the traditional belief systems of the Scottish Gaels with regard to the second sight, fairies and the supernatural. Students will learn about folk healing and rituals about birth, death and marriage. Additionally students will look at some examples of traditional Gaelic stories, handed down for hundreds of years before finally being written. Students will learn about the different Gaelic song types and traditions. In looking at the songs and stories, students will also learn about the people who collected these folk items.

Introduction to Scottish Gaelic Literature (GH2514)

15 Credit Points

This survey course is an introduction to Scottish Gaelic literature from the 17th century to the modern day. Scottish Gaelic has one of Europe's oldest secular literatures and this is an exciting choice for anyone with an interest in Scotland's history, literature and culture: it is taught using translated texts and originals for those whose Gaelic language is good enough. Students will gain new perspectives on key areas of Scottish society such as Jacobitism, the Clearances, the Highland Land Wars, the Celtic Twilight Movement and the Gaelic renaissance in the modern period. This course is suitable for anyone in Programme Year 2 with an interest in Scottish society.

French Culture, Politics and Society i (FR2015)

15 Credit Points

The course introduces students to the history, culture and identity of contemporary France by examining key moments and themes in the development of France as a political and cultural entity from the Early Modern period to the present.

French Culture, Politics and Society II (FR2515)

15 Credit Points

The course introduces students to the history, culture and identity of contemporary France by examining key moments and themes in the development of France as a political and cultural entity from the Early Modern period to the present.

Optional Courses

Select ONE of the following options:

Ex-beginner

  • Advanced Introductory French Language 1 (FR2012)
  • Advanced Introductory French Language 2 (FR2512)
  • Gaelic for Advanced Beginners 2A (GH2009)
  • Gaelic for Advanced Beginners 2B (GH2509)

Qualified

  • Advanced French Language 1 (FR2002)
  • Advanced French Language 2 (FR2502)
  • Gaelic Language 2A (GH2013)
  • Gaelic Language 2B (GH2513)
Advanced Introductory French Language 1 (FR2012)

15 Credit Points

This second year French language course which runs in the first half-session is only open to students who have passed FR1528. It will improve their written, oral and aural skills, and is one of the two second year French language courses (along with FR2512) that has to have passed to be allowed into the French honours Programme.

Advanced Introductory French Language 2 (FR2512)

15 Credit Points

This second year French language course which runs in the second half-session is only open to students who have followed FR2012. It will improve their written, oral and aural skills, and is one of the two second year French language pre-requisite courses (along with FR2012) that one must have passed to be allowed into the French honours Programme.

Gaelic for Advanced Beginners 2a (GH2009)

15 Credit Points

This is the second year Gaelic language course for people who started learning in their first year. It builds on the foundations already set in the first year and continues to develop vocabulary, grammatical structures and idioms in both writing and speech.

Gaelic for Advanced Beginners 2b (GH2509)

15 Credit Points

This course follows on from GH2009 and is for people who started learning in their first year. It continues to develop a range of linguistic competencies in written and oral language.

Advanced French Language 1 (FR2002)

15 Credit Points

This second year French language course which runs in the first half-session is only open to students who have passed FR1529. It will improve their written, oral and aural skills, and is one of the two second year French language courses required to be allowed into the French honours Programme.

Advanced French Language 2 (FR2502)

15 Credit Points

This second year French language course which runs in the second half-session is only open to students who have followed FR2002. It will improve their written, oral and aural skills, and is one of the two second year French language pre-requisite courses to be allowed into the French honours Programme.

Gaelic Language 2a (GH2013)

15 Credit Points

This is the first half of the second year Gaelic language course for students who are relatively fluent in the language already and have studied it to at least Higher in school (Higher Gaelic or Gàidhlig) or similar level. It follows on from GH1513. It continues to develop accuracy in the language and increases usage across a wider variety of domains.

Gaelic Language 2b (GH2513)

15 Credit Points

This is the second half of the second year Gaelic language course for students who are relatively fluent in the language already and have studied it to at least Higher in school (Higher Gaelic or Gàidhlig) or similar level. It follows on from GH2013.

Year 3

Compulsory Courses

Academic session spent in French-speaking country.

Year 4

Compulsory Courses

Junior Honours French Language (FR3089)

15 Credit Points

This Junior Honours French language course, whose pre-requisites are FR2502 or FR2512, runs over the full session and is only open to Single and Joint Junior Honours degree in French students.

Building on the skills gained during their first two years of study of French, this course will improve the students' French language skills in all four areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing, whilst increasing their grammatical and lexical knowledge, as well as their sensitivity to linguistic variety.

It carries 15 credits and is assessed by way of four equally weighted assignments.

Gaelic Language A (GH3022)

30 Credit Points

A level three Gaelic language course for students taking honours Gaelic. The course runs over both semesters and is topic based, enabling students to develop their ability to deal with a large range of subjects in Gaelic. The course also develops students' generic writing and oral skills.

Optional Courses

Select further courses in French and Gaelic at level 3 to make up 60 credit points in each discipline.

Year 5

Compulsory Courses

Senior Honours French Language (FR4089)

30 Credit Points

This Senior Honours French language course, whose pre-requisite is the Junior Honours French Language course, is run over the full session and is only open to Single and Joint Senior Honours degree in French students.

Building on the skills gained in their third year of study of French, this course will help the students' French language gain very high skills in all four areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing, whilst increasing their grammatical and lexical knowledge, as well as their sensitivity to linguistic variety.

Gaelic Language B (GH4022)

30 Credit Points

A level four Gaelic language course for students taking honours Gaelic. The course runs over both semesters and is topic based, enabling students to develop their ability to deal with a large range of subjects in Gaelic. The course also develops students' generic writing and oral skills.

Optional Courses

Select ONE dissertation option:

  • Dissertation in French (FR4097)
  • Dissertation in Gaelic Studies (GH4507)

Also, select further courses in French and Gaelic at level 3 to make up 60 credit points in each discipline.

Dissertation in French (FR4097)

15 Credit Points

Candidates will write a dissertation of 8,000 words on a subject to be decided in consultation with the Course Co-ordinator, to be researched and written (under supervision by a member of staff) in the second half session of Junior Honours, and submitted at the beginning of Senior Honours.

Dissertation in Gaelic Studies (GH4507)

15 Credit Points

The dissertation course for honours Gaelic students is student-led. Students decide in consultation with academic staff what topic they would like to research and write about for their final dissertation. Students can chose any topic from the broad field that is Gaelic studies, including topics related to: Gaelic literature (a writer or a theme), Gaelic sociolinguistics, language planning, Gaelic cultural practices, etc.

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

Learning Methods

  • Individual Projects
  • Lectures
  • Research
  • Tutorials

Assessment Methods

Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:

  • Coursework such as essays and reports completed throughout the course.
  • Practical assessments of the skills and competencies they learn on the course.
  • Written examinations at the end of each course.

The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, years of study and individual courses.

Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.

Why Study French and Gaelic Studies?

Why French

  • French at Aberdeen gained the highest possible rating of ‘Excellent’ in the last national Scottish Teaching Quality Assessment.
  • A vibrant international community on campus and across Aberdeen and north-east Scotland, with many French and French-speaking students, staff and activities on campus and across the region.
  • A dynamic French Society, organising social and topical events throughout the year, and a brilliant way to get to know other students studying or speaking French.
  • The spectacular, award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library, with stunning study facilities, state-of-the-art learning technology, and a first-class collection of French books and films for your course.
  • A packed campus programme of events, exhibitions, invited speakers and the popular annual May Festival which welcomes international figures, experts, authors and scientists to campus every spring, with an increasingly European flavour.
  • Your year abroad as a language assistant or visiting student at locations including Lyon, Rennes, Grenoble, Réunion, Brussels, Geneva, Lausanne, the IFP (Institute of French Petroleum) School in Paris and the Club des Langues in Anglet.
  • International recognition as a centre for study and research in French, with research covering not only France, but also French-speaking Africa and the Caribbean.

Why Gaelic Studies

  • Strong tradition of commitment to Gaelic, and a University Gaelic Language Plan to promote and develop Gaelic in the University in line with the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005.
  • Close links with the Research Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies, and its literary magazine, Causeway / Cabhsair, which frequently includes poems and short stories from established and new Gaelic writers.
  • Student-run Celtic Society famous for its musical events, ceilidhs and trips, and a great opportunity to use Gaelic in an informal, social context.
  • The spectacular, award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library, with an extensive Gaelic collection and treasures, including the 10th century Book of Deer with some of the oldest examples of Gaelic writing to have survived from medieval Scotland.
  • An intensive summer school, giving students the chance to practise their Gaelic language skills in a friendly, natural environment.
  • A strong Gaelic theme in the University’s popular May Festival at which thousands attend to hear world-famous authors, poets, public figures, scientists and other experts, and debate big issues in arts, literature, and current affairs.
  • A warm welcome for students whatever your level of Gaelic, and long-standing experience in teaching this fascinating language to complete beginners.

Entry Requirements

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.


General Entry Requirements

2022 Entry

SQA Highers

Standard: AABB

Applicants who have achieved AABB (or better), are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/ Advanced Highers may be required.

Minimum: BBB

Applicants who have achieved BBB (or are on course to achieve this by the end of S5) are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will normally be required.

Adjusted: BB

Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one of the widening participation criteria are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will be required.

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

A LEVELS

Standard: BBB

Minimum: BBC

Adjusted: CCC

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

International Baccalaureate

32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL.

Irish Leaving Certificate

5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3.

Entry from College

Advanced entry to this degree may be possible from some HNC/HND qualifications, please see www.abdn.ac.uk/study/articulation for more details.

2023 Entry

SQA Highers

Standard: AABB

Applicants who have achieved AABB (or better), are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/ Advanced Highers may be required.

Minimum: BBB

Applicants who have achieved BBB (or are on course to achieve this by the end of S5) are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will normally be required.

Adjusted: BB

Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one of the widening participation criteria are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will be required.

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

A LEVELS

Standard: BBB

Minimum: BBC

Adjusted: CCC

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

International Baccalaureate

32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL.

Irish Leaving Certificate

5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3.

Entry from College

Advanced entry to this degree may be possible from some HNC/HND qualifications, please see www.abdn.ac.uk/study/articulation for more details.

The information displayed in this section shows a shortened summary of our entry requirements. For more information, or for full entry requirements for Arts and Social Sciences degrees, see our detailed entry requirements section.


English Language Requirements

To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.0 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0

TOEFL iBT:

OVERALL - 78 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 59 with: Listening - 59; Reading - 59; Speaking - 59; Writing - 59

Cambridge English B2 First, C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency:

OVERALL - 169 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee information
Fee category Cost
RUK £9,250
Tuition Fees for 2022/23 Academic Year
EU / International students £19,800
Tuition Fees for 2022/23 Academic Year
Home Students £1,820
Tuition Fees for 2022/23 Academic Year

Scholarships and Funding

Students from England, Wales and Northern Ireland, who pay tuition fees may be eligible for specific scholarships allowing them to receive additional funding. These are designed to provide assistance to help students support themselves during their time at Aberdeen.

Financial support for your study year abroad

We provide funding to students starting in 2021/22 on degrees with a compulsory period abroad at the same level as the Turing funding. This financial support can be used towards rent in your new city overseas, general living costs, or travelling to see more of your new home country. Students going abroad will continue to pay their normal rate of tuition fees with no increased charges or need to change tuition fee arrangements to the host university. For a full overview of how the tuition fees work, you can check this helpful funding table on our website.

Additional Fees

  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Our Funding Database

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

Careers

There are many opportunities at the University of Aberdeen to develop your knowledge, gain experience and build a competitive set of skills to enhance your employability. This is essential for your future career success. The Careers and Employability Service can help you to plan your career and support your choices throughout your time with us, from first to final year – and beyond.

Our Experts

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Discover Uni

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Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
Student Recruitment & Admissions
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
Aberdeen
AB24 3FX