The emphasis in the BA in French and Spanish is on linguistic proficiency and inter-cultural awareness; language and identity are central to the programme. You will be critically reflecting on a variety of contemporary issues, historical periods and geographical areas (France and Spain, but also for example Latin America and the Francophone Caribbean), explored through a range of media including art, cinema, linguistics and literature. The degree includes residency (average 8 months) in a Francophone or a Spanish-speaking country.
French and Spanish Degree highlights
French is ranked 2nd, and Iberian Languages 5th, in the UK in the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2016. In the most recent Research Assessment (REF 2014), Languages at Queen's were ranked third in the UK.
- After stage 2, you will spend a period of residence (normally 8 months or more) in a French- or Spanish-speaking country. Students will have the possibility of acquiring professional experience by teaching in a school, undertaking a work placement, or doing voluntary work. They may also elect to study at a French or Spanish university.
- Students taking a BA in French and Spanish have a very genuine opportunity to acquire professional experience in a global context.They undertake an extended period of residence abroad in a French- or Spanish speaking country (typically 8 months), normally working as an English language assistant in a school, or undertaking a paid work placement (destinations includeFrance and Spain, but also for example Mexico, Canada and Martinique). Students can also elect to study at a French-orSpanish-speaking university. In addition to the benefits for oral competence, the residence provides a unique opportunity for immersion in one of the cultures of the languages studied. Moreover, the Year Abroad is a significant learning andemployability enhancement opportunity. This feature of our degreeprogramme gives students the opportunity for personal development, and further develops communication and language skills and intercultural awareness. The challenges of living abroad come to be a unique (and unforgettable) stage in their own personal development.
- Graduates of French and Spanish have risen to the top in a number of fields, including media, print journalism, translating, marketing, local government, fast-stream Civil Service, and a very wide range of local, national and international companies.
World Class Facilities
- Queen's has an excellent library with an outstanding range of resources in French and Spanish cultures. The Language Centre has state-of-the-art facilities for language learning, and the IT provision more generally is excellent.
Internationally Renowned Experts
- French and Spanish at Queen's are taught by world-leading experts, with particular expertise in medical humanities, postcolonial writing, Latin American culture, Linguistics, Visual Culture, and Golden-Age and eighteenth-century Spanish culture. Research in Languages at Queen's was ranked 3rd in the UK in the most recent Research Assessment (REF 2014).
- Students run lively French and Spanish Societies, and staff offer support through a personal tutoring system, skills development programme and a structured framework for feedback.
Emily Rankin (joint French and Spanish)
Studying for a French and Spanish degree at Queen's will assist students in developing the core skills and employment-related experiences that are valued by employers, professional organisations and academic institutions. Graduates from this degree at Queen's are well regarded by employers (local, national and international) for their communication and critical thinking skills, and over half of all graduate jobs are now open to graduates of any discipline.
Typical careers pursued by our graduates include business, media, marketing, translation, publishing, education/teaching, translation/interpreting, PR, journalism, fast stream Civil Service, and banking.
88% of our graduates are in employment or further study within 6 months of graduation. Starting salaries are in the region of £21,800. They are employed in a range of organisations, from the BBC and UTV to the Civil Service, from the Irish News to the European Parliament, and including a very wide range of local, national and international companies.
Employment after the Course
Graduates in French and Spanish go on to work in a very wide range of sectors, including media and communications, advertising, journalism, tourism, civil service, teaching and translation. They are particularly in demand in careers requiring a high level of communication and presentation skills, as well as strong critical and analytical thinking.
We regularly consult and develop links with a large number of employers including, for example, Santander and the British Council.
Our past students have also gained work placements with organisations such as the British Council Assistantships Program and with Citibank.
"The communication skills I learnt during my degree have been extremely valuable in my current position, from being able to give client presentations with confidence to editing, writing and proofreading advertisements across different media channels. The skills I developed from completing my year abroad, submitting translations and r��sum��s, as well as presenting in three different languages throughout my degree, trained me to work effectively within the Communications industry and made me stand out as a candidate during the interview process."
Susannah who graduated in 2014 with a joint honours degree in French and Spanish, is now an Account Executive at ASG & Partners, a Communications and Advertising agency based in Belfast.
Additional Awards Gained(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)
Prizes and Awards
In French, the AN Troughton Award and The Samuel and Sarah Ferguson Travel Prize recognise academic achievement at Levels One and Two.
In Spanish, the O'Rawe prize is awarded for excellence at Level Two.
Students in both languages who achieve a first class mark in their final year oral examination are awarded a certificate of distinction.
The Chris Shorley Prize rewards the best performances in the Language exam in Level Three.
The Richard Bales Prize is awarded to the student with the highest mark in an optional module in Level Three
The Xavier Giralt prize is awarded to a Level Three student whose performance has been deemed exceptional.
There are a number of undergraduate prizes available to top-performing students on this pathway. In addition to Foundation Scholarships recognizing outstanding achievement in Level One, we have a range of endowed prizes.
Degree plus award for extra-curricular skills
In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.