Archived News | Return to News Center

November 1, 2007

ULM French course chosen as one of the best in the nation

A ULM French course has been chosen as one of the best in the nation in a recent study.

Class materials and information on teaching practices for “Survey of French Literature” were submitted this summer by Chris Michaelides, associate professor in the department of foreign languages, as part of his participation in the College Board’s Best Practices Course Study in World Languages.

As one of the College Board’s top 10 selections, Michaelides’ survey was designated a Best Practice Course in French Literature among U.S. colleges and universities. It will serve as a model for the redesign of the national AP equivalent course.

Readings in the class represent a wide range of periods, genres, and Francophone cultures, from medieval France to 20th century Guadeloupe; from Victor Hugo, the famous Romantic poet and novelist, to the post-colonial Algerian writer Assia Djebar.

Michaelides explained, “Since the class is geared to intermediate French students just entering the advanced level, one of its main goals is to improve reading comprehension using a variety of authentic literary texts.

“However, it is also a conversation and even a creative writing course because we always try to apply readings to personal experience or use them to reflect on the world we live in.” And that reflection develops critical thinking skills, “something that comes almost naturally,” he adds, “when you study other languages and cultures.”

The Educational Policy Improvement Center housed at the University of Oregon issued the study. College Board Commission members identified key features expected of exemplary courses in the subject area. Independent reviewers then used this information to determine the best practices in college teaching as they evaluated courses nationwide.

PLEASE NOTE: Some links and e-mail addresses in these archived news stories may no longer work, and some content may include events which are no longer relevent, or reference individuals and/or organizations no longer associated with ULM.