All French and Francophone studies majors are required to complete a Culminating Experience that comprises:

  1. a Culminating Exercise, and
  2. a French and Francophone Major Portfolio.

Culminating Exercise

Students may choose from these options:

  • Option 1: Honors Thesis. A senior French and Francophone studies major will work independently under the close supervision of her/his adviser in authoring a substantial research project.
  • Option 2: Senior Research Colloquium. Either during the fall or spring of their senior year, students choosing this option will present, in a public format, their research conducted as part of a 300-level course.

    With the guidance of their academic adviser, majors in French and Francophone Studies will designate a 300-level seminar on a French or Francophone topic taught by a faculty member in the French and Francophone Studies Program. As part of the learning activities in that seminar, majors will undertake a paper or research project related to French or Francophone literature or culture. At the end of the semester, they will present the result, both in its final written form and as an oral presentation in French based on their research, preferably at a one-day symposium organized by the French and Francophone Studies Program on campus.

    These two components of the culminating experience (paper and presentation) must provide evidence of: 1) competency in written and oral communication through structured arguments using appropriate forms of textual, cultural and visual analysis and evidence and 2) familiarity with critical approaches, academic research and methodology in the field of French and Francophone studies. A committee of French and Francophone Studies faculty will evaluate these culminating experiences to determine whether or not they meet both of these two learning objectives and thus satisfy the requirement.

    With the permission of the French and Francophone Studies adviser, students who are taking an independent study in French and Francophone Studies may satisfy the culminating experience requirement through the successful completion of an Independent Study project. However, these students will still be required to do an oral presentation in French based on their research project in order to provide evidence for the two learning outcomes under examination, as stated above.
  • Option 3: Internship. During their spring semester in Tours as part of the Bucknell en France program, students (second-semester juniors) will have the opportunity to complete a credit-bearing internship with an employer in the local Touraine region, culminating in a report detailing their specific contributions to the workings of the institution in which they are placed.

French and Francophone Major Portfolio

The Major Portfolio allows you to assess your fulfillment of the learning outcomes established by the French and Francophone Studies Program. It also provides our faculty with important information for assessing the effectiveness of our academic program. You will be asked to submit examples of coursework that best illustrate your progress toward the learning goals, and to reflect upon your personal progress toward the acquisition of the key competencies that comprise the French and Francophone Studies major (see right panel).

Portfolio Materials To Be Submitted:

  1. A composition (final, ungraded version) from any 200-level French course
  2. A research paper from a 300-level French course completed during your Senior year (with its complete bibliography, final ungraded version)
  3. A self-reflective essay upon your personal progress toward the acquisition of key competencies that comprise a French and Francophone Studies major. After reading the course catalog and examining the French and Francophone Studies web pages, please answer the following questions in a the form of a 2-page, typed and single-spaced reflective essay in English.

    • What have you learned as a French major?
    • If you had to start the major all over again, what would you do differently?
    • To what extent did the French major complement your other studies at Bucknell?
    • Ideally, how will the major influence/enhance your future studies and/or profession?
    • To what extent do you think that your French major enhanced and/or influenced your understanding of the world and who you are as a person?

Your completed Portfolio must be sent electronically to the Director of the French and Francophone Studies Program at least two weeks before the end of classes for the semester in which you graduate.