Beginners French Short Course (Year 1)  Short Courses

Course Information

Start DateStart TimeDurationCostCourse CodeApply
Tuesday 3 October 2017 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 1) CS1801 Enrolment Closed
Wednesday 4 October 2017 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 1) CS1801 Enrolment Closed
Tuesday 16 January 2018 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 2) CS1801 Apply Now
Wednesday 17 January 2018 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 2) CS1801 Apply Now
Tuesday 1 May 2018 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 3) CS1801 Apply Now
Wednesday 2 May 2018 18:30 - 20:30 10 classes over 1 term £235.00 (Term 3) CS1801 Apply Now
Tuesday 3 October 2017 18:30 - 20:30 30 classes over 3 terms £560.00
(All 3 Terms)
CS1801 Apply Now
Wednesday 4 October 2017 18:30 - 20:30 30 classes over 3 terms £560.00
(All 3 Terms)
CS1801 Apply Now

Course Content

Learn how to speak, understand, read and write French in a top-rated central London institution.

This short course is an introduction to the French language and way of life for the purpose of practical communication.

You'll develop essential speaking, listening, reading and writing skills as well as a solid understanding of the structure of the language.

Whether you're learning French for travelling, working abroad or with foreign companies, the French Beginners course will enable you to communicate confidently on a basic level in everyday situations, socialise and not feel out of place in the country you are visiting.

This French Beginners evening course runs over three terms which progressively build on one another. Lessons take place once a week for two hours. Each term is 10 weeks long. You have the choice of enrolling for the course on Tuesdays or Wednesdays. All of our French language courses are taught by highly experienced language lecturers who are also native speakers.


Term 1 of the French Year 1 course is aimed at complete Beginners - for students with no prior knowledge of the language.

Term 2 and Term 3 of this course are aimed at students with some basic knowledge of the language. If you would like to join the French Year 1 course in January or April, please make sure you have the correct level by using our online guidelines.

If you're a complete beginner and you have missed the October enrolment, you can join the French Beginners Fast-Track course in January. You will cover the course materials of Terms 1 and 2 in one term. You will then be able to join Term 3 of French Beginners Year 1.

If you've missed the January enrolment, you can join the French Beginners Summer Intensive (Year 1) in Term 3 (end April / start May). You'll cover the course materials of Term 1, Term 2 and Term 3 in one term.

Why choose the French Beginners short course?

Delivered by native speakers, our French Beginners short course is taught over ten weekly evening sessions in the heart of London.

Challenging but rewarding, the French Beginners course is perfectly suited to those working full time or anyone looking to improve their language skills and knowledge.

Tutor Info

Tuesday course:

Frédéric Fournier qualified some years ago at the Sorbonne University in Paris. He has been teaching French as a foreign language in London for the past fifteen years at several institutions such as Westminster University, The City Literary Institute and the European Bank for Research and Development.

Wednesday course:

Agnès Shepherd studied at University College London. She has been teaching French as a foreign language for the past 18 years in a broad spectrum of institutions such as Highgate Literary and Scientific Institution, University of Westminster, Havering Sixth Form College, Axa CS and EDF Energy. She also runs her own French Workshops. Agnès has a light touch approach to teaching making students' participation a priority, creating a relaxed atmosphere in which students can thrive.


No prior knowledge required if you want to start in the autumn. If you wish to join this French evening course in January or April, please check your level by using our online guidelines before enrolling as some basic knowledge is expected.

English Requirements

You will need to respond to instructions and read course documents in English.

What will I learn?

Term 1

Topics covered

Alphabet/ sound system, yourself and your family, jobs, nationalities, daily activities; tastes and plans

Grammatical structures

Basic verbs: 'être and avoir' (to be and to have) and the verb endings in the present tense. Frequent verbs such as 'manger, marcher, regarder, téléphoner, écouter , travailler and the conjugation in the present tense; Definite and indefinite articles 'le, la, les'  (the) 'un, une, des';. Partitive article 'du, de la, des'; Possessive adjectives 'mon, ma, mes'; Masculine and feminine nouns; Plural of nouns; Interrogative and negative forms. Key words to ask questions:'Qui, où,, quand, comment'; Comparatives; 'Plus grand, que / moins riche que'; Opposites and frequencies; 'Toujours, jamais, souvent '; Irregular verbs in the present tense 'prendre, aller, venir'

Learning objectives

o Greeting people

o Introducing yourself, your family and others

o Talking about nationalities and jobs

o Describing your house and your neighbourhood

o Selecting food and wine in a shop

o Dressing up for the four seasons

o Talking about your daily routine including days and hours

o Talking about your interests and making plans.

Term 2

Topics covered

Weekly activities and duties; Food and drink, Objects and situations; Parts of the body and ailments, Making appointments; Making plans for the weekend; Travel; Shopping, Past events

Grammatical structures

Modal verbs: 'vouloir, pouvoir, devoir; savoir' with conjugations in the present tense. Present tense of verbs ending in '-ir' and '-re'. Pronouns for direct and indirect object such as 'lui' and 'leur'. More key questions words: 'pourquoi, parce que, avec qui, depuis quand'; Introduction to passé composé (Past tense). Regular, irregular and motions verbs (aller, venir, monter, arriver) in the past tense. Adjectives and their agreement; More comparatives: Meilleur que / mieux que; More opposites and frequencies: autant que (as well as), quelquefois. Past tense of modal verbs; Immediate future: 'Je vais prendre'

Learning objectives

  • Asking for help
  • Inviting, arranging to meet and replying to an invitation
  • Leaving and receiving phone messages;
  • Saying what you want to do, can do or must do
  • Describing people, clothes and buying habits
  • Visiting the doctor
  • Ordering meals and making travel reservations
  • Describing a sequence of events in the past
  • Handling short social exchanges mixing present, past and immediate future tenses
  • Obtaining information on prices and quantities

Term 3

Topics covered

Directions; Travel; Describing places and journeys; Past, present and future events; email writing

Grammatical structures

Revision of the present tense and introduction of the past tense for the reflexive verbs; Relative clauses: 'Une ville qui est en Alsace / Une ville que j'aime'; Complete review of the past tense; More indirect pronouns such as 'eux' (them); Introduction of ' en', 'J'en ai' and 'y', j'y vais. Practice of all pronouns mixed up with past tense; 'Ne…plus' ; Introduction to the future tense. Practise of regular future tense.

Learning objectives

  • Understanding/giving directions
  • Giving advice and expressing opinions
  • Agreeing and disagreeing
  • Summarising a piece of written information
  • Talking about past actions
  • Giving small presentations
  • Expressing obligation and interdiction
  • Making complaints
  • Making plans for the future
  • Expressing nuances

Teaching and Assessment

The emphasis in the Beginners French course is on listening and speaking. The lessons focus on language that is required in authentic situations.

Classroom activities during this evening course will include: role-playing, class room discussion, pair and group work, work on pronunciation and intonation as well as grammar in context. Listening to audio clips and watching videos are an important element in our lessons. More comprehensive grammar exercises and reading texts are generally set as homework.

Your progress will be assessed on an on-going basis through homework and performance in class. You will receive verbal feedback from your lecturer when appropriate and written feedback with your homework. All evaluation will take place in a relaxed and informal setting.

Recommended Reading

The tutor will provide materials in class.

Leads To...

Having successfully completed the French Beginners course (Year 1), you can progress to French Lower Intermediate Course (Year 2).

Career Outcome

At the end of the course students are expected to be able to understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type.

They should be able to introduce themselves, people they know and things they have.

They are able to interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.

Application Deadline: