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Elementary-Level Course Descriptions

NOTE: For the availability of placement tests and other related information, please see this page.

French

100 Intensive Elementary French

Prerequisites: No prior instruction in French OR placement of FRENCH 101, students with any prior study must take the French placement test.

Credit: 8 credits

Frequency: Spring term only

Subsequent course: French 231 or French 230

Content:

Equivalent of FRENCH 101 and 102 taught in one term. This course introduces students to French language and culture with an emphasis on communication; the content-based approach integrates grammar with functional use. Students completing the course will be able to hold spontaneous conversations on everyday topics, understand the gist of one-way communications like those on radio and television, read for practical information and write simple correspondence and compositions on familiar topics.

 

101 Elementary French

Prerequisites: No prior instruction in French OR placement of FRENCH 101

Credit: 4 credits

Frequency: Fall semester only

Subsequent course: French 102

Content:

The sequence of FRENCH 101/102 presents the essentials of French grammar, vocabulary, and culture needed to communicate in French at a moderate speed. Vocabulary and structures are practiced through communicative activities stressing listening and speaking. Authentic documents are used to develop reading skills. Cultural awareness and listening skills are also developed through listening and video materials.

 

102 Elementary French, Continued

Prerequisites: FRENCH 101 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better).

Credit: 4 credits

Frequency: Winter semester only

Subsequent course: French 231 or French 230

Content:

The sequence of FRENCH 101/102 presents the essential elements of French grammar, vocabulary, and culture that are needed in everyday life to understand French spoken at a moderate speed and to be understood by sympathetic native speakers. Vocabulary and structures are practiced in class primarily through communicative activities stressing listening and speaking. Authentic documents are used to develop reading skills and culture. Cultural awareness and listening skills are further developed through listening and video materials.

Classes meet four hours per week. Daily homework assignments involve studying vocabulary and grammar, writing exercises or short compositions, and practice in listening comprehension. There are several quizzes and tests, as well as a final examination and speaking tests. Class participation is graded.

FRENCH 102 is only open to students who have completed FRENCH 101 at U-M with a grade of C- or higher. It is NOT open to students who have begun instruction at the high school level or another college or university. All students with prior instruction in French should take the placement test to determine the appropriate course for their needs. 

 

103 Review of Elementary French

Prerequisites: Students with any prior study of French must take the Placement Test. Only the placement score and not language coursework completed at a previous school will determine placement; RCLANG 150.

Credit: 4 credits

Typical Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring

Subsequent course: French 231 or French 230

Content:

FRENCH 103 is a course for students with some prior language study in French, and covers the same material presented in FRENCH 101 and 102. Entrance into the course is by recommendation of the placement exam or with the permission of the coordinator. (Information on the placement exam is available online at www.lsa.umich.edu/rll/undergraduates/language-placement/language-placement-tests.html.) Because students placed in FRENCH 103 are already familiar with some of the material, the course moves at a rapid pace. By the end of the course, students will have a good working vocabulary and strong listening comprehension skills; they should be able to express themselves in French (both in writing and orally) using most of the basic structural patterns in the language. Students will also have a general knowledge of some French-speaking cultures. Technology (multi-media, the web) will be used to aid in developing writing, reading, and listening skills as well as cultural competency.

 

230 Intensive Second-Year French

**Satisfies LSA term language requirement

Prerequisites: One of FRENCH 100, 102, or 103 or RCLANG 190 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); OR assignment of FRENCH 231 on Placement test.

Credit: 8 credits

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer, 230 is also offered abroad (Grenoble, France) in Spring term.

Subsequent course: French 235

Content:

The equivalent of FRENCH 231 and 232 taught in one term. The goals of the course are to develop and refine listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills; review grammatical structures and acquire new ones; and to develop an awareness of French-speaking cultures the world over. We will use literature, magazine articles, movies, videos, and songs to explore the culture and literature of several francophone countries. Offered on-campus and in France.

 

231 Second-Year French

Prerequisites: One of FRENCH 100, 102, or 103 or RCLANG 190, (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); OR assignment of FRENCH 231 on Placement test.

Credit: 4 credits

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring

Subsequent course: French 232

Content:

In FRENCH 231, students explore French culture and history through several films while also reviewing and expanding grammatical structures and vocabulary. These structures and vocabulary allow students to talk about the present, past and future, describe in detail, make comparisons, avoid repetition, and compose more sophisticated sentences. Through the various readings, listening activities and writing assignments, students also further develop their listening, speaking and writing skills.

 

232 Second-Year French, Continued (non-Topics sections)

**Satisfies LSA language requirement

Prerequisites: FRENCH 231 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); OR RCLANG 250; OR assignment by placement test.

Credit: 4

Frequency:  Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Subsequent course: French 235

Content:

FRENCH 232 uses feature-length French-language films to explore aspects of French history, culture, and society that include: the French colonization, immigration and multiculturalism, the French education system, socioeconomic differences, family and personal relationships, and identity.

Throughout the term, students will be expected to review and learn various grammatical elements and vocabulary in order to participate in classroom activities and discussions related to assigned films and readings.

Linguistically, we will focus on narrating in the past, discussing the future, hypothesizing, expressing opinions and reactions, avoiding repetition, linking ideas, and composing more sophisticated sentences.

 

French 235: Advanced Practice in French

Prerequisites: FRENCH 230 or 232 with a grade of C- or higher; or RCLANG 290 or 310; or assignment by placement test. Only the placement score and not language coursework completed at a previous school will determine placement.

Credit: 3 credits

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Subsequent courses: French 270-299

Content:

Through current events and their historical background, this course focuses on some concepts essential to French and Francophone Studies, among which French slavery, colonialism, decolonization, migration, race relations, globalization, gender, and sexuality. While stressing a communicative approach and the four skills, the content components of this course will be presented simultaneously with a review and expansion of grammatical structures:


Possible topics to be covered:

  • What is the French Republic?
  • The European Union (past and present)
  • Transatlantic and Multilateral Relations: a. Franco-American Historical Relations b. Globolization and its Opponents
  • Families and Sexual Identities: "Marriage for Evryone"-Same Sex Marriages and Parenthood-Gender Identities-Homophobia, Transphobia
  • Women: Rights and Inequalities (past and present)-Domestic Violence// Women Sexual Mutulation
  • France’s Multicultural Society-Slavery-Colonization-Immigration-Islam of France
  • A Multicultural "Francophone" : Stromae, Stylistic and multicultural analysis of his songs

 

Material will be presented through audiovisual documents, readings and online texts.

 

Required Texts: French 235 Coursepack (by Yannick Viers) at Dollar Bill Copying

French Grammar by Mary E. Coffman Crocker- Schaum's Outlines Series, McGraw-Hill
 
Course Requirements: The final grade is based on three oral presentations (30%), three essays (30%), five written exercises (20%), and class participation (20%).

Italian

101 Elementary Italian

Prerequisites: No prior instruction in Italian language OR placement of ITALIAN 101

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall/Winter

Subsequent course: Italian 102

Content:

Italian 101 is an introductory-level course designed to provide students with a basis to communicate effectively in Italian in everyday, realistic situations while practicing reading and writing skills. This course is task and content-based and incorporates grammar in the functional use of language through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Vocabulary and structures are practiced in class through communicative activities and video responses. Readings and cultural notes introduce students to contemporary Italian life and culture. Their cultural awareness and listening skills are further developed through audio-visual materials.

Grading is based on regular attendance, class participation, regular and timely completion of homework assignments, tests, a final speaking test, and a final written examination.


102 Elementary Italian

Prerequisites: ITALIAN 101 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better).

Credits: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Subsequent courses: Italian 231 or Italian 230

Content:

Italian 102 continues the presentation of the essentials of the Italian language and attempts to broaden the students’ knowledge of Italian life and culture. It is task-and content-based and incorporates grammar in a functional use of language through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Language use is encouraged through a variety of communicative activities, and video-responses. Readings and cultural notes introduce students to contemporary Italian life and culture. Their cultural awareness and listening skills are further developed through audio-visual materials such as films, and also includes authentic readings in Italian (short articles from newspapers and magazines).

Grading is based on regular attendance, class participation, regular and timely completion of homework assignments, tests, a final speaking test, and a final written examination.


230 Second-Year Italian (on campus and abroad)

**Satisfies LSA Language requirement

Prerequisites: ITALIAN 100 or 102 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); or assignment of ITALIAN 231 on placement test.

Credit: 8 credits

Frequency: Spring term only

Subsequent course: Any course above Italian 230/232

Content:

ITALIAN 230 is an intensive course that covers the materials of ITALIAN 231 and ITALIAN 232. This course reviews the essential principles of grammar, and reinforces oral and written skills by means of contextualized communicative and written activities. The authentic readings include works by known Italian authors, as well as the journalistic prose, both of which offer a continuous practice of reading skills. The content of this course emphasizes learning first hand about Italian culture through immersion into its rich cultural tradition while experiencing life in Italy today.


231 Second-Year Italian

Prerequisites: ITALIAN 100 or 102 or 103, (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); or assignment by placement test.

Credits: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Subsequent course: Italian 232

Content:

Italian 231 focuses on reviewing basic grammar structures done in the first year of Italian while at the same time it delves deeper into nuances of Italian grammar. Additionally, there is a strong cultural component to the course as we learn about Italian history, society, and culture. The course furthers the development of all four language skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Authentic readings from a variety of Italian texts are used to deepen reading skills while writing skills are practiced through short essays. Communicative skills are emphasized through continuous class discussions (in pairs, small, and large groups), oral practice, and a poster presentation. Audio-visual materials are incorporated to further develop students’ listening and comprehension skills. Grading is based on active class community involvement in class, homework, brief exams based on specific skills, a poster presentation, assessments in the four skills, and a final exam.

 

232 Second-Year Italian, Continued

**Satisfies LSA language requirement

Prerequisites: ITALIAN 231 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); or assignment by placement test.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Subsequent courses: Any Italian course above 232

Content:

Italian 232 focuses on advanced practice of all grammar structures learned in 231 and introduces the subjunctive tense and other complex grammar structures in Italian. Additionally, there is a strong cultural component to the course as we learn about Italian history, society, and culture. The course furthers development of all the four language skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Authentic readings from a variety of Italian texts are used to deepen reading skills while writing skills are practiced through short essays. Communicative skills are emphasized through continuous class discussions (in pairs, small, and large groups), oral practice, and a poster presentation. Audio-visual materials are incorporated to further develop students’ listening and comprehension skills. Grading is based on active class community involvement in class, homework, brief exams based on specific skills, a poster presentation, assessments in the four skills, and a final exam.

Portuguese

101 Elementary Portuguese

Prerequisites: No prior Portuguese study

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall term

Subsequent course: Portuguese 102

Content:

In a continuation of PORT101, students will develop their communication skills, both in written and oral form, as they delve into topics such as festivities, the world of work, the environment, and traveling. Movies, music, current online content and short stories are an integral part of the cultural and linguistic input for this highly interactive and communicative course.

 

102 Elementary Portuguese

Prerequisites: PORTUG 101 completed with a minimum grade of C- or better, or placement into 102

Credit: 4

Frequency: Winter term

Subsequent course: Portuguese 231

Content:

In a continuation of PORT101, students will develop their communication skills, both in written and oral form, as they delve into topics such as festivities, the world of work, the environment, and traveling. Movies, music, digital content, and short stories are an integral part of the cultural and linguistic input for this highly interactive and communicative course.

 

231 Second-Year Portuguese

Prerequisites: PORTUG 102 or placement into 231

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall term

Subsequent course: Portuguese 232

Content:

Second-Year Portuguese is designed to integrate and expand earlier learning done in PORTUG 101/102, and experiment with the language in a more complex level and situations. Insight into the Lusophone culture is given through the study and discussion of movies and literature, as students work on group tasks, research, presentations and argumentative writing.

 

232 Second-Year Portuguese

**Satisfies LSA language requirement

Prerequisites: PORTUG 231 (C- or better) or PORTUG 415 (C- or better) or placement into 232

Credit: 4

Frequency: Winter term

Subsequent courses: Any Portuguese course above 232

Content:

PORT232 is the fourth and final course of the elementary language program in Portuguese. Students will gain a deeper insight of the Lusophone culture through literature and authentic material at an upper-intermediate level. In addition to this, learners will get to expand their vocabulary, perfect their grammar accuracy, and develop skills that will enable them to use Portuguese beyond the classroom.

Spanish

100 Intensive Elementary Spanish

Prerequisites: No prior instruction in Spanish language OR placement of SPANISH 101.

Credit: 8

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring

Subsequent courses: Spanish 231 or Spanish 230

Content:

The first year of college Spanish equivalent to SPANISH 101 and 102 taught in one term.

 

101 Elementary Spanish

Prerequisites: No prior Spanish language or placement of SPANISH 101.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Content:

The first part of an introduction to the Spanish language and culture; task- and content-based approach integrates grammar in a functional use through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Language use is encouraged through communicative activities rather than a sequence of linguistic units. Videos, audio cassettes, and computer materials incorporated.

Course description and objectives: SPANISH 101 is designed to introduce you to the Spanish language and the many facets of the culture. In this course, you will develop your ability to communicate satisfactorily in Spanish in everyday practical situations while acquiring some of the skills necessary for effective reading and writing in Spanish. The course focuses on the introduction and development of the four language skills necessary for interpersonal communication in Spanish: listening, writing, reading, and speaking and cultural topics will be integrated in every chapter.


102 Elementary Spanish (continuation of 101)

Prerequisites: SPANISH 101 with a minimum grade of C- or better.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter

Subsequent courses: Spanish 231 or Spanish 230

Content:

Intended for students who have completed Spanish 101; a continuation of the first year

Course Objectives: Introduction to Hispanic language and culture; task- and content-based approach integrates grammar in a functional use through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Language use is encouraged through communicative activities rather than a sequence of linguistic units. Films and audio cassettes incorporated.

Goals: Students completing SPANISH 102 will:

  • Speak in short spontaneous conversations involving everyday topics, observing basic courtesy requirements
  • Understand gist of one-way communications like radio and television
  • Read for practical information
  • Write simple correspondence and short compositions on familiar topics, with good control of basic sentence structure

 

103 Review of Elementary Spanish

Prerequisites: Assignment of SPANISH 103 by placement test; or RCLANG 154.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring

Subsequent courses: Spanish 231 or Spanish 230

Content:

Course Objectives: Introduction to the Spanish language and culture. Task- and content-based approach integrates grammar in a functional use through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Language use is encouraged through communicative activities rather than a sequence of linguistic units. Learning strategies and cultural awareness are also important objectives of the course.

Goals: Students completing SPANISH 103 will:

  • Know about different sociocultural norms, acting with awareness of such differences
  • Speak in short spontaneous conversations involving everyday topics, observing basic courtesy requirements
  • Understand the gist of one-way communication such as radio and television
  • Read for practical information
  • Write simple correspondence and short compositions on familiar topics, with good control of basic sentence structure

SPANISH 103 is a first-year language class for students who are considered to be High beginners. This means that instead of covering first-year material in two academic terms (SPANISH 101 and 102) students take only one term of first-year Spanish before entering the intermediate level (SPANISH 231).

 

Spanish 230 Intensive Second-Year Spanish (on campus or abroad)

**Satisfies LSA language requirement**

Prerequisites: SPANISH 100, 102 or 103 with a grade of C- or higher; or RCLANG 194; or assignment of SPANISH 231 by placement test.

Credit: 8

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Subsequent courses: Spanish 277

Content:

The second year of college Spanish equivalent to SPANISH 231 and 232 taught in one term. The course is offered on campus and in Spain.

 

Spanish 231 Second-Year Spanish

Prerequisites: SPANISH 100, 102 or 103 with a grade of C- or higher; or RCLANG 194; or assignment of SPANISH 231 by placement test.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Subsequent course: Spanish 232

Content:

This course is designed to improve the speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills of students and to provide insight into the literature and culture of Spanish-speaking people. Meant to integrate and extend earlier learning, SPANISH 231 is intended to provide students with the timely opportunity — and challenge — of transforming themselves into truly active, thinking language users.

 

232 Second-Year Spanish, Continued (non-Topics sections)

**Satisfies the LSA language requirement**

Prerequisites: SPANISH 231 with a minimum grade of C- or better, or RCLANG 254; or assignment by Placement Test.

Credit: 4

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Subsequent course: Spanish 277

Content:

The principal aim of both the topics and non-topics courses is to acquire a more profound understanding of the history, politics, society, culture, customs, and literature of the Hispanic world through listening, writing, reading, and speaking activities in Spanish. At the same time, students develop the language tools, both grammatical functions, and vocabulary, necessary to discuss issues of relevance to Hispanic culture and to analyze these situations while expressing their own personal opinions, reactions, conclusions, and possible outcomes to hypothetical situations. Therefore, the practice and application of grammatical features and vocabulary are integrated into the content of the course, and students are expected to formally study and practice these structures individually through the explanations provided in the textbook and the practice activities assigned as homework. Materials include newspaper articles, cultural readings, videos, short lectures, listening comprehension activities, and computer materials.

 

277 Spanish Grammar and Composition

Prerequisites: SPANISH 230 or 232 with a grade of C- or higher; RCLANG 294 or 314; or assignment of SPANISH 277 by placement test, or AP/IB Credit for 232

Credit: 3

Frequency: Fall, Winter, Spring

Subsequent courses: Any Spanish class at the 279-399 level

Content:

SPANISH 277 presents a review of Spanish grammar and specific lexical items, such as preterit/imperfect, ser/estar, the subjunctive, por/para, and the passive voice. As examples of what students might see in upper-level Spanish courses, 277 also includes discussions of short literary pieces and movies, as chosen by instructors.