BA Degree in Foreign Applied Languages (LEA)

Licence de Langues Etrangères Appliquées (LEA)

As you probably know if you have read my About page, I am currently a first year student doing a Bachelor degree in Foreign Applied Languages in the University which lasts 3 years (6 semesters). In French we say a ‘licence de Langues Etrangères Appliquées’. In today’s blogpost, I have decided to explain to you the contents and the purpose of this bachelor degree in case you are interested by this course. So let’s get started!

 

What are the subjects studied in LEA?

Firstly, you have English courses, that’s to say you study English grammar, English laboratory, American and British civilisation, and translation. You have to distinguish two different types of translations: the ‘thèmes’ which are translations from mother tongue into target language and the ‘versions’ which are translation into your native language.

Secondly, you have to chose another language among German, Spanish, Italian, Chinese, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese or others (it depends on the offers of the University you have chosen). Personnaly, I have chosen Spanish courses since I already studied this language at the lycée, so that I study Spannish grammar, Spanish laboratory, Spanish and Hispano-American civilisation and also translation.

Then, you have initiation courses related to the functioning of a company, that’s to say Economics, Law, Management, Marketing, Communications and Information Technology. You do not have all this subjects at the same time, they intersperse throughout the semesters. For example, the first year, you only have Economics courses.

Afterwards, you have to chose two options among Anglophone Literature and Culture, Anglophone Press and Media, Spanish and Hispano-American Culture, Spanish Literature, a third language level 1 for beginners or level 2, Mathematics, Theatre, Sport and UEPP if you want to be a primary school teacher. Again, these options depends on the University you have chosen.

 

What does my timetable looks like?

 

Here is the timetable I had for my first semester. As you can see, it is pretty cool and there is a lot of blanks. But these blanks are quickly fill with autonomous work. Explanations: of course, your teachers will give you some work such as translations or grammar exercices but you also have to train yourself by dealing with courses in depth, by making revision cards, by doing more exercices and by trying to express yourself orally and in writting. This is the reason why I had decided to start blogging: here I can try to improve my english writting. By the way, if you have seen any grammatical mistakes, you can correct me in the comments below, it will help me a lot in my task!

 

Are the courses in lecture theatre?

Yes. The courses are in lecture theatre (up to 1000 students) so that you can not participate: the teacher says what he has to say and you take notes. Fortunately, there also are tutorial courses in groups of 30 people where you can dialogue with each others and ask questions to the teacher. I just want to add that if you are in a University located in a big city, most of your courses will be in lecture theatre. Then, if you are in a University located in a small city like me, most of your courses will be in little groups of around 30 people. I think it is better since there is a good atmosphere, a convivial state of mind. In addition, we all know each other and that is a good point because we are not afraid to speak and to show our ideas in front of the class. The teachers are also more attentive and ready to answer questions, so that we can progress rapidly.

 

Do you need to have a good level of English as well as Spanish?

Well, I want to say you do not need to be bilingual but you need to know the basis. In fact, all the subjects are in foreign languages except the ones related to the functioning of a company which are in French. My referent teacher told me that you have to obtain the level B1 (intermediate) or B2 (upper intermediate) for the end of your last semester. In other words, you have three years to train yourself and progress. But what are level B1 and level B2? Shown underneath, a table with the abilities you need to have for each levels.

 

 

B Independent user B1 Threshold or intermediate
  • Can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc.
  • Can deal with most situations likely to arise while travelling in an area where the language is spoken.
  • Can produce simple connected text on topics that are familiar or of personal interest.
  • Can describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.
B2 Vantage or upper intermediate
  • Can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in their field of specialization.
  • Can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party.
  • Can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.

Source: Wikipedia

How to validate a semester?

In order to validate a semester, you have to obtain the average in each UE (Unité d’Enseignement = Educational Unit = groups of subjects). Do not panick if you have not passed an exam, you can make it up on other subjects of the same UE.  There are end-of-term examinations in January to end the first semester and in May to end the second semester.

 

Do you have to do an internship?

Yes, you compulsorily have to do an internship during your last semester (6 weeks minimum with a training report to do). It can be in a French compagny or a foreign company in France or in a foreign contry. But if you want, you can also do an intership during your second year, you just have to make enquiries in your University. Also, you can do school and work experience alternating.

What are the job prospects after this BA degree?

There is a lot of job prospects after that since you will have a double qualification in languages and in management. You can mainly find work in the tertiary sector (national and international business, marketing, logistics, tourism, management, human resources, advertising, banking, journalism, publishing, translation and interpreting, teaching…). Some examples of most frequently exercised jobs: business executive, export assistant, head of marketing, head of products, director’s assistant, translators, primary school teacher…

 

I hope this post helped you. If you have any questions, you can ask me in the comments below, I will be glad to answer 🙂

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