Minor in French Studies

The minor in French Studies provides an intellectually stimulating, flexible, and valuable enhancement to any undergraduate major. With French as the language of instruction in all courses for the minor, students achieve a solid understanding of French grammar and pronunciation, deepen their intercultural awareness, and develop proficiency in speaking, reading, writing, and listening that enables effective communication in many academic, everyday, and professional settings. Each student, in keeping with their particular interests and in consultation with a faculty advisor for the minor, selects a combination of six advanced courses from a wide range of CAS LF and other related offerings in French and Francophone language, literature, and culture. In literature-focused courses, students gain historical knowledge and develop skills of analysis and interpretive argumentation through engagement with great literary, filmic, and cultural works and traditions. Study abroad is strongly encouraged, and up to four courses taken through BU programs in France may be counted toward the minor, as detailed below.

The minor welcomes students from all BU undergraduate schools and colleges. Recent graduates have combined their minor in French Studies with more than 20 different arts and sciences majors and with professional degrees from the College of Fine Arts, College of Communication, Questrom School of Business, and School of Hospitality Administration. A minor in French Studies provides students with skills and knowledge that can enhance career opportunities across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, including government, international development, journalism, law, communications, and business.


  • A total of six 4-credit CAS LF and closely related courses in language, literature, film, linguistics, and civilization, numbered 300 and above, distributed as follows:
    • Two advanced language courses numbered CAS LF 301–349 taught in French on the BU Charles River Campus or via a BU Study Abroad program. This category also applies to BU Study Abroad courses with FR codes.
    • One course from the paired sequence CAS LF 350 Introduction to Analysis of French Texts (poetry, theater, essay, short fiction) or CAS LF 351 Introduction to the French Novel.
    • The other course in the paired sequence CAS LF 350–351 OR one additional advanced LF language course numbered 301–349 conducted in French OR an internship with a clearly demonstrable relation to the Francophone world.
    • Two courses numbered CAS LF 400 and/or above taught by professorial-rank faculty or invited faculty with primary appointments in the Romance Studies department. Courses taught by professorial-rank faculty with primary appointments in French that carry course codes other than LF (e.g., KHC, IR, CC, etc.) may be applied. Courses conducted in English may be applied.
    • Requirements cannot be fulfilled by AP score; native French speakers and students entering with high placement results will substitute an advisor-approved course numbered CAS LF 320 or higher.
    • Students may include up to two transfer courses from other colleges, universities, or non–Boston University study abroad programs and must take a minimum of three courses on the Charles River Campus.
  • A maximum of one 4-credit internship taken through Boston University’s Study Abroad Program in Paris may count for the minor in French Studies. Internships at other study abroad programs may not be credited toward minors offered by the department. A grade of C or higher is required in all courses taken toward the minor.

    Study Abroad Opportunities

    Students may take courses to fulfill their language requirement or courses toward a French Studies major or minor, or toward the joint major in French & Linguistics, in the Boston University Study Abroad and Internship Programs in Geneva and Paris. The BU center in Paris offers the Paris Internship Program, running throughout the year, as well as a study abroad program during the summer.

    Opportunities to take courses abroad taught in French are also available in BU’s program in Geneva, and through exchange programs in Paris in the fields of management and political science. Additional information on these programs is available in the Study Abroad and Internship Programs portion of this Bulletin. Students should consult with a faculty advisor to determine which Study Abroad courses may fulfill major and minor requirements.

    Placement Examination

    A placement test is required of all students whose most recent course in French was taken in high school or at a college other than Boston University and who wish to continue their study of this language here. Information regarding online placement exams is available in the department or on the departmental website.