FRE4007 : Les valeurs républicaines, le système d'enseignement et le social renewal

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


'Republican values' - variously defined and evolving - inform contemporary French politics and society in general and ongoing debates in education in particular. A knowledge of how France's traditional yet changing core political values underlie current controversies in French education at all levels facilitates understanding of how French society negotiates its 'social renewal' in periods of change and challenge for France since 1945. After introducing and discussing key values such as the Republic, Republicanism, liberty, equality, fraternity, laïcité, and meritocracy, and setting them in the context of the socio-economic and socio-political development of France since 1945, this module focuses principally on the problematic issues of social mobility and 'equality of opportunity' for all within the French educational system at primary, secondary and tertiary levels.

Outline Of Syllabus

- The French Republic, Republicanism and the Republican tradition
- Liberty, Republicanism and education
- Equality, Republicanism and education
- Fraternity, Republicanism and education
- Meritocracy, Republican elitism, social mobility and 'social renewal'

- Republican values and primary education (Maternelle and Ecole primaire)
- Republican values and secondary education (Collège)
- Republican values and secondary education (Lycée and Baccalauréat)
- Republican values and tertiary education (Facultés and IUT)
- Republican values and tertiary education (Prépas and Grandes écoles)

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture221:0022:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion166:0066:00Researching/writing essay; researching/preparing for exam
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading133:0033:00Seminar preparation
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:0011:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery31:003:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study165:0065:00Research/study around lectures
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

1) LECTURES allow definition of the scope of the syllabus, an introduction to a body of knowledge, and modeling of the level of analysis required (note-taking). LECTURES will be (mainly) in FRENCH to familiarize students with the relevant vocabulary on the topics covered and to give additional practice in listening to (academic) French.

2) SEMINARS give students the opportunity of working in groups, researching topics individually and in groups, trying out their knowledge and understanding in group presentations, and asking questions (interpersonal communication and oral presentations). SEMINARS will (mainly) be in ENGLISH to encourage student participation and to allow students to test out complex ideas that they might find difficult to formulate in French. Answering of assessed essay questions and exam answer/s will entail initiative in individual research (note-taking), practice in written communication, analysis and in standard formats of presentation of work.


Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination902A301 exam answer in FRENCH assessing/discussing the topics covered in the module OVERALL. Timetabled in end-Sem assessment period.
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2A702500 words in ENGLISH on ONE topic covered in lectures and seminars. Submitted in end-Semester assessment period.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Essay2MPractice. see details below **
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

A practice essay plan on a topic covering the content of the module overall affords students the opportunity to revise their general understanding of the issues and concepts involved as practice for the more specific assessment tasks, and also focuses their attention on 'Rationalisation' skills in written work.
1) ELEMENT 1 (70%): One ESSAY of 2500 words including quotations and notes (but excluding bibliographies) to be submitted according to the conventions stated in the SML undergraduate handbook. Set in the relevant Semester. Assessment questions made public at a date determined by the SML conventions then in force. Assessed-essay work will allow student to demonstrate higher intellectual skills of understanding analysis and evaluation with reference to specific aspects of the module (essay questions focused on particular events, theories, concepts or facts) and develop skills in researching and writing (including allowing students to demonstrate the ability to communicate arguments fluently and succinctly in writing) and footnoting and referencing. The essay questions will test specific individual topics covered in the module.

2) ELEMENT 2 (30%): One ninety minute EXAM. Assessment by examination requires different skills and plays to different strengths, therefore this module offers assessment by essay and exam. The exam requires ONE examination answer relating to topics covered in lectures and seminars, requiring succinct and specific condensation of knowledge gained from lectures, seminars, directed reading and research and independent work. The exam question/s will test knowledge relating to the module OVERALL.

Reading Lists