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This is a program designed for a serious student who would like to improve his or her French through a cultural immersion experience. Classes at the Université d’Orléans begin at 9:00am on weekdays and usually end at 4:00pm or later; they are followed by co-curricular activities, walking tours and sports that are also conducted in French. There will be at least 90 classroom contact hours in total. All of the Orléans activities, sports activities and all excursions planned by MSSU are in addition to the 90 classroom contact hours.
Students must have completed at least two years of French at MSSU (or have the equivalent level of proficiency) to qualify for entrance into the program; this is both our requirement and that of the University of Orléans. When students arrive on campus in France, they are given written and oral placement tests by the French university faculty and then assigned to one of four different levels in each of the different areas (oral expression, written expression, culture, reading, etc). Because of the breakdown by proficiency in each of the language skills, students can make maximum progress. Students who test at Orléans level I (minimum of 2 semesters of college French) take FREN 250 French Conversation and Grammar. Students who test at Level 2 or 3 in Orléans take FREN 350 Language and Civilization.
All students take a full program of grammar, conversation, phonetics, writing, and civilization. In addition, each student elects a “workshop” course; these vary each year, but usually include poetry writing, producing a summer newspaper, participating in a choral group, or preparing plays for production.
At the end of the program, the Orléans’ faculty test the students for overall proficiency levels and also give course-specific tests for each of the areas (grammar, conversation, phonetics, composition, optional classes, workshops, etc.). The university prepares a certificate for each student with a breakdown of their achievement by area. If the students do not attend daily classes and make adequate progress, they do not pass the course. The President of the Université d’Orléans or another administrator usually attends the certificate ceremony, gives a speech and presents the awards. In addition to passing their course tests, students write weekly journal entries in French as well as a 1000-word reflection on the outcome of their program as required by the Institute. In preparation for the trip, students must attend monthly meetings and a post-trip “debriefing” in order to receive course credit for FREN 250 French Conversation and Grammar or FREN 350 Language and Civilization.
The faculty in Orléans plan at least one excursion for the students to the castle region, where students typically see Chambord or Chenenceau castles as well as one of the smaller villages, such as Vouvray. In addition, the MSSU faculty sponsor plans one weekend trip to enrich the educational experience of the students. This trip takes place at the beginning of the month when the students arrive in Paris. Before heading to Orléans, we will spend a long weekend in Paris to see Notre Dame, the Musée d’Orsay (Impressionist paintings), the Louvre, the Sainte Chapelle, the Latin quarter, Montmartre, the Champs-Elysées, the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower. Students will learn how to navigate Paris so that they are free to return on their own later during their stay in Orléans which is situated less than an hour by train from Paris.
The trip provides a blend of structure and guided choices. Students enroll in classes at the University of Orléans where they mingle with other international students, adjust to French professors and assignments and join in activities with people from around the world. Students will live with a French host family during the week. If students require special needs, another housing option may be possible upon request. Living with a family provides many opportunities for language practice and for new cultural experiences. All our students will eat at the university restaurant at noon, adapt to public transportation and find their way around a medium-sized French city (Orléans has a population of about 120,000). The classes at the university are rigorous, but there are many opportunities for interacting with French people in the homes or the apartments of the residence hall and through activities planned by the “stagières,” young graduate students employed by the Université d’Orléans to provide social activities for the summer students.
FREN 250 French Civilization and Grammar (6 credits) and FREN 350 Language and Civilization (6 credits) are in the MSSU catalog. They were designed to fuse the curriculum at our partner university with the syllabus format of MSSU. The objectives set in the syllabi are designed specifically for study abroad.
Students who are French majors, seniors and/or have a minimum GPA of 3.0 are given priority to participate in this program. Students must also have completed French 204 or the equivalent in order to participate.
This trip was budgeted at $4,490. In addition, there will be meal expenses on weekends, at noon in the university cafeteria (app. 4 euros per day) and in Paris (estimated at a total of $300).
The proposed budget will cover the following expenses:
A deposit in the amount of $750 is due on January 30th 2015. The final payment is due on April 1, 2015. Deposits will be made to the cashier in Hearnes Hall. All deposits are non-refundable, unless the trip is canceled by mssu. Student agrees that deposit for this trip is non-refundable if canceling trip for any reason.
Students can apply for a grant in the amount of $750. To be eligible for the grant, students must have a minimum 2.5 GPA and be full-time MSSU students. Students must have completed or be enrolled in a combined total of 24 hours during the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 semesters. If a student’s GPA drops below 2.5 before the study abroad experience, or if the student fails or drops a class and no longer has full-time status, his or her funding will be revoked. If a student receives a failing grade in the course connected to the study abroad experience, he or she must refund the full amount of the grant to Missouri Southern.
June 24—Departure for Paris
June 25—Arrive in Paris, check into hotel. Late afternoon, walking tour of the Latin Quarter, visit Notre-Dame Cathedral, learn to use the metro system. (meets objectives #5 and #6).
June 26—Visit the Musée d’Orsay, the Sainte Chapelle, the Marais; evening, cultural activity (concert or play depending on availability).
June 27—Visit the Champs-Elysées, the Louvre and the Tuillerie gardens, afternoon, choice of Versailles or the Luxembourg gardens.
June 28—Travel by train to Orléans, check into host families (#5)
June 29—Placement tests in the morning; classes begin
June 30-July 23—Classes in Orléans at the University (see Appendix I, objective #1-4)
July 24—Train to Paris; final evening in Paris, special dinner before return to the US.
July 25—Return flight to USA
Before the trip there will be preliminary meetings for the student:
November meeting: General information about courses in France, overview of the program.
Dr. Karen Turman