French & Francophone Studies

Central’s French and Francophone Studies program offers many opportunities for students interested in French language and culture. Many students have spent their first year after graduation working in France as assistants in the French school system, and graduates have also pursued careers in education, marketing, government and business in the United States, Canada and overseas.

Interested students have the opportunity to live in the French house on campus and to study in a French-speaking country.

The Central Difference

Live and Learn in Multilingual Facilities

The Language Houses in the Wing International Center offer a unique living alternative for language students, those returning from a semester abroad or anyone who wants a chance to use French, German or Spanish on a daily basis, celebrate native holidays, share experiences and sample diverse foods.

The Weller Center for Business and International Studies houses faculty offices and classrooms for the modern language departments. The $3.9-million building completed in 1999 includes an interactive computer language lab to supplement traditional methods of language learning through phone exchanges, chat groups, recording and listening activities.

Cheery Traveler

John Lucas ’92 loved his study abroad experiences at Central College so much that he made a career out of it. And now he’s advising his alma mater on its new off-campus experiences.

Off-Campus Experiences

Central students can study off-campus — both internationally or domestically in the United States. These opportunities give students the chance to prepare to be global citizens, equipped to compete in the global job market. Students can check out experiences led by Central faculty or attend select academic programs across the world that provide opportunities for study, service, internships and other types of experiential learning. Options include experiences in Chicago, Washington, D.C., Central America, Ghana, England, the Scottish Highlands and more.

In addition, French and Francophone studies majors can immerse themselves in French-speaking countries to learn the culture and history.

Beyond Central

Putting the “Hire” in Higher Education

  • French teacher, Boulder Valley School District, Colorado
  • French teacher, East High School, Des Moines
  • Bilingual complete goods coordinator, Deere & Co., Kansas
  • Trilingual account representative, Agricredit Acceptance LLC, West Des Moines
  • Certified guide, Paris

Central College Announces Arthur J. Bosch Undergraduate Summer Student Research Awards

The Arthur J. Bosch Endowment is providing six Central College students the opportunity to undertake summer research projects as Bosch Undergraduate Summer Research Fellows.


  • French Club
  • French language house

Graduate Placement

  • University of Iowa
  • University of California at Berkeley
  • George Washington University
  • Columbia University
  • Washington University


Students may choose from internships in many disciplines and professional fields and have access to service learning opportunities. Recent internships have included the following fields:

  • Arts and culture
  • Business, economics and IT
  • Communications, advertising and public relations
  • Education
  • Health and human services
  • International politics and law
Central College student

Courses & Faculty

Classes in French literature, civilization, translation and business are taught exclusively in French to maximize opportunities for students to master the language. Students also have the opportunity to live in the French language house. All courses aim to increase language proficiency and cultural awareness.

Learn more about this discipline in the course catalog.

Meet the Faculty

  • Nicole Kaplan, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Professor of French
  • Linda Laine, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Professor of Communication Studies
  • Mary Stark, B.S., M.A., Ph.D., John and Anna Poole Professor of Humanities and Professor of English

Sample Coursework

First Year

  • Beginning French I or Intermediate French I
  • Advanced Conversation and Composition I

Sophomore Year

  • Intermediate French I or Advanced Conversation and Composition I
  • Introduction to French and Francophone Literature

Junior Year

  • Advanced Conversation and Composition II
  • French civilization courses

Senior Year


Learn More

Want to find out more about French & Francophone Studies at Central? Contact us to learn more about this discipline and our other strong academic programs.

Visit campus to observe classes and experience The Central Difference firsthand.


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