Why Study French? 

French is still today one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. It  is estimated that 77 million people use it as as their first language and that it is spoken by a total of 128 million people as either their first or second language.The use of French extends into all corners of the globe, French being spoken in France, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Canada, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Martinique, Mauritius, Monaco, New Caledonia, the Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Vanuatu and so on and so on. No matter what career you end up in you will be working in a global economy in which a knowledge of French will always be an advantage. 

It is one of the major diplomatic languages of the world and is used as the one of the official or administrative languages in many organizations such as the European Union, the IOC and the United Nations. 

As well as a cherished linguistic heritage, the French prize their extremely rich cultural history. In all cultural domains, the French have consistently produced some of the most renowned names in the entire world. It would be nigh impossible to enumerate them all, but think of a ‘top 10’ list in any artistic realm and it is likely that French names will appear there: in literature: Zola, Sartre, Camus, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Mauriac, Stendahl, Molière, Genet, de Beauvoir, Céline, Duras, Cocteau…; in painting and sculpture: Delacroix, Millet, Courbet, Pissarro, Manet, Monet, Degas, Cézanne, Rodin, Renoir, Gauguin, Toulouse-Lautrec, Matisse…; in Philosophy: Rousseau, Comte, Montesquieu, Bergson, Merleau-Ponty, Sartre, Bataille, Althusser, Lacan, Deleuze, Baudrillard, Derrida, Kristeva, Cixous, Barthes…; in cinema: Renoir, Méliès, Tati, Cocteau, Melville, Clouzot, Godard, Truffaut, Besson, Resnais, Carax, Beineix, Varda, Denis…. World-renowned also are the buildings of France: the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Pompidou Centre; stars of ‘la chanson française’ such as Edith Piaf and Serge Gainsbourg; and of course the food of France: from frogs legs and snails to crêpes and baguettes. And this list only covers metropolitan France! Many more names could be added from the Francophone world where elements that could be considered ‘typically French’ have been blended with other cultures, traditions and histories.

Another obvious reason to study French, therefore, is to gain a knowledge and appreciation of this rich rich linguistic and cultural legacy or even to experience it first hand! More and more students are taking advantage of the various exchange agreements between the University of Queensland and overseas universities to experience these cultures and to study towards their UQ degree overseas at the same time. Upon return to Queensland, some students decide to study an aspect of this culture that has particularly interested them, studying for an Honours degree in French and specialising in an area of their own choosing.  


UQ Advantage Award Program

Students can participate in the UQ Advantage Award Program by attending language level-specific weekly activities. These are provided by the French language assistant sponsored by the French Embassy and UQ. Participating in this activity will enhance language acquisition, and confidence levels. Students must have actively participated for at least one semester for the activity to count towards the award.


French section

Student Resources and Facilities

The School provides many state of the art resources for students.

French pathways

There are French streams for beginners, intermediate, post-secondary and advanced students.

French courses

French courses can be taken as electives or as part of a major or double major in French.

Other courses

These elective courses are taught in English. Some may count towards a major or double major in French.

Employment opportunities

French is a global language.

French @ UQ learning community

All UQ students enrolled in French are automatically enrolled in the French learners community through Blackboard.

French Honours

French Honours is a graduate coursework program with a thesis component.

French staff

List of staff teaching in the French program.

Cross-institutional Students

The Brisbane Universities Languages Alliance (BULA) is an Australian-first alliance between Queensland's three largest universities to expand higher learning in a range of Asian and European languages.

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