French M.A.

The French M.A. program is not currently accepting applications.

For more information, please contact French Graduate Advisor:

Jean-Luc Desalvo
Clark Hall 435 

The Master of Arts Degree in French offers students the opportunity to pursue studies in French literature, linguistics, and culture. The Master's Degree leads to careers in French teaching, translation, international business, diplomacy, social and governmental services and related areas.


A French B.A. and a minimum GPA of 3.0 are required to be admitted as “classified” in the program. Conditionally classified students may be required to take 15 units or more of undergraduate courses to complete their preparation in French. All applicants demonstrate their competency in the subject by scoring 700+ in the computerized placement test, and 75% in the classification exam.

Regular coursework for the M.A. totals thirty (30) units, with a minimum of six graduate seminars (200-level courses) in French and at least one seminar in each category: literature, civilization and linguistics. Four (4) upper-division (120+level) courses, and two graduate courses from another department may be applied toward the degree with the approval of the Graduate Advisor. Graduate seminars may be repeated when content changes.

Students have the option of Plan A - courses and a thesis, or Plan B - 10 courses and a comprehensive written and oral exam.


The department offers generous scholarships to qualified applicants who have completed at least one semester of studies in the French program at SJSU. The Graduate Studies office offers Graduate Fellowships once a year.

Teaching Opportunities

Classified students may apply to teach French language courses through the Department's Teaching Associate program.

External Exams and Study Abroad Programs

The French program prepares the students to take DELF & DALF exams. The Examen de la Chambre de Commerce de Paris is offered at SJSU every other year. Graduate students have the opportunity to spend one semester or one year in Paris or the Province of Québec.

Courses and Seminars

All courses and seminars are taught in French.

Undergraduate Courses

Maximum 12 units

  • Fren 120A Literature: 12th & 16th century
  • Fren 120B Literature: 17th & 18th century
  • Fren 132 French for Professions
  • Fren 140A Literature: 19th century
  • Fren 140B Literature: 20th century
  • Fren 160 Special Topic
  • Fren 170 Translation & Comparative Stylistics

Graduate Seminars & Special Studies

18 units

  • Fren 201 Modern French
  • Fren 202 Civilization and Culture
  • Fren 210 French & Technology
  • Fren 220 History of the French Language
  • Fren 240 Francophone Literature
  • Fren 250 French Novel
  • Fren 260 French Drama
  • Fren 270 French Lyric
  • Fren 280 French Thinkers
  • Fren 298 Special Studies
  • Fren 299 Master's Thesis

French M.A. Learning Objectives and Outcomes

  1. Analyze cultural productions from the following three perspectives:
    1. Historical and cultural
    2. Linguistic and stylistic
    3. Literary and literary theory
  2. Develop theses of a scholarly nature on special topics.
  3. Make scholarly presentations.
  4. Use research tools for academic papers and process data in compliance with academic standards.
  5. Use interdisciplinary approaches and make connections between cultures and languages.
  6. Demonstrate thorough knowledge of the French-speaking world, from both historical and contemporary perspectives.
  7. Use technology for scholarly research and presentations.