case-studies

Case Studies

Emily Featherstone

Emily Featherstone
I have always been passionate about studying modern foreign languages as I started learning French from a young age so it seemed only natural to carry my favourite subject onto A-level. After studying French at Godalming for 2 years I am constantly amazed at the amount of progress I have made in such a short space of time. Thanks to the weekly speaking sessions with the French Assistant and the trip to Le Château de la Baudonnière my confidence in speaking French has grown hugely. I am now able to speak spontaneously and debate about a wide range of relevant topics such as immigration and nuclear energy, a step away from
the basic topics of GCSE.

Many people often ask whether there is a huge jump in difficulty between GCSE French and A-level. While there is a significant increase in the complexity of language used you are not thrown in the deep end. There are dedicated grammar lessons each week and there are plenty of online resources that allow you to practise key grammar points at your own leisure. Don’t panic at the beginning if you feel you don’t know a lot of grammar. When I first started A-level French I had never even heard of the subjunctive tense yet I now use it often without thinking. You are not left on your own to learn the required vocabulary either because each student receives a vocabulary book with a list of essential words for each topic. It was a little overwhelming at first to have weekly vocabulary tests but you soon get into the habit of learning vocabulary regularly and
this ensures you are fully prepared for the exams.

I came to Godalming knowing very few people as I went to The Petersfield School. Although it was a little daunting at first I enjoyed meeting so many new people and now have friends spread across 2 counties. 

I knew that I wanted to go into a job that would allow me to continue studying languages alongside French I also teach myself Russian. I therefore decided to join the British Army as a linguist within the Intelligence Corps as this gives me the opportunity to use
both French and other languages by working as a translator in many different scenarios worldwide. This role requires 18 months of intensive language training but it is A-level French that has undoubtedly taught me the skills needed to be an efficient language
learner.

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