French and Francophone Studies, BA

French and Francophone Studies introduces students to the full span of historical and cultural traditions from France and the French-speaking world. Languages courses - from introductory to advanced - promote linguistic fluency, building on the skills students have acquired in high school or at Penn. Upper-level seminars explore a range of topics pertaining to literature, history, visual arts, and/or the media, and they offer majors and minors the opportunity to engage in research on French and global Francophone cultures across periods into contemporary times.

The minimum total course units for graduation in this major is 32. Double majors may entail more course units.

At least half of all courses for the major must be taken in the Department at Penn. ALL courses must be taken in French, with the possible exception of Major-related courses.

For information about the General Education requirements, please visit the College of Arts & Sciences Curriculum page.

College General Education Requirements and Free Electives
Foundational Approaches + Sectors1 + Free Electives20
Major Requirements
Advanced Language 2
FREN 1212Advanced French Grammar and Composition1
or FREN 1214 Advanced French Conversation and Composition
History & Culture
Select 2 course units of the following: 32
French History and Culture to 1774
French History and Culture 1789-1945
Contemporary France
Le français dans le monde/French in the World
Literature & Arts
Select 2 of the following: 22
Masterpieces of French Cinema
Perspectives in French Literature: Love and Passion
Perspectives in French Literature: The Individual and Society
Francophone Literature and Film
Select a minimum of 5 course units of 3000-level courses with 2 in the Department at Penn5
Additional French or Major-related Courses
Select 2 course units of French courses at the 2000 or 3000 level 42
Research Requirement
Must be completed in the Department at Penn
Total Course Units32

You may count no more than one course toward both a Major and a Sector requirement. For Exceptions, check the Policy Statement.


Must be taken in the Department at Penn.


At least one course must be taken in the Department at Penn.


Major-related courses need approval from the Undergraduate Chair.


Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.4 in the Major.

FREN 4000Honors Thesis1.0


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.