French Online Programme: Signature of an MOU between Alliance française and Preston University
(Islamabad, October 9, 2006)
The Alliance Française d’Islamabad and Preston University, Islamabad signed an MOU on Monday, 9th October 2006 in order to launch its on line programme French Online. L’Alliance Française d’Islamabad was represented by M. Matthieu DECLERCQ, Director while Preston University was represented by Prof. Syed Shahid AFZAL, Dean of Information Technology.
Following the signing of the MOU, the students at Preston University will avail the opportunity to learn French as a foreign language via the Internet. During a semester, the students will study 8 modules on line. The computer lab session twice a week will allow the students to learn French independently and in an interactive way. The weekly workshop with a trained tutor will enable the students to improve their French pronunciation and practice listening comprehension and oral expression as well. The platform of French Online allows the students to be constantly in touch with their tutor through email, forum and chat to discuss any learning or technical problem. Evaluation will be carried out through assignments, projects, quizzes and final examinations. Successful candidates will get a joint certificate by Alliance Française and Preston University.
The administration of Preston University plans to introduce French Online programme in other Campuses in various cities in future. It has also shown keen interest in cooperation with the French embassy in other fields.
MORE DETAILS ABOUT FRENCH ONLINE
French Online" is a project implemented by the French Cultural Centre "Alliance Française of Islamabad" and sponsored by the Service of Cooperation and Cultural Action of the Embassy of France, now available on the Internet.
This distance learning program aims at offering the opportunity of learning French in the areas of Pakistan where the French language institutions are not available, and reach people who cannot attend the conventional classes. It also seeks to train in French language, the students selected to follow studies in France, and therefore enhancing the exchanges in the field of scientific research.
French Online is an attractive and interactive method, based on the comprehensive approach An E-learning platform manages the content that consists of twenty modules corresponding to five levels and more than 2000 HTML pages. Every module has a pedagogical objective and contains five sections:
Pour commencer : composed of dialogues and activities related to the objectives of the lesson. The sound is synchronized with the text. Sentences are highlighted.
Grammaire: several interactive activities are proposed (exercises, quizzes, fill in the blanks, multiple choices questions, etc.).
Vocabulaire: all the vocabulary used in the module is resumed with the sound, and the correct pronunciation.
Pour finir: this section concerns the cultural aspects of the language. Multiple aspects of the French peoples’ ways of life are mentioned.
Ressources: all the vocabulary used in the twenty modules, useful information about the method, links with Web sites such as dictionaries, universities, etc.
Besides the lessons accessible on the Internet, French Online has the study material below:
A student workbook and CD for writing and pronunciation practice.
A student guide explaining the distance learning approach and the methodology of French Online.
A tutor guide including the face-to-face methodology.
A prospectus to inform the public about the program.
Face-to-face fortnightly classes with the assistance of the tutor.
A "Chat" service .
A forum service.
On-line tests at the end of each module.
A self-assessment test.
An oral and written examination, at the end of the session.
A diploma awarded jointly by the Alliance Française and the institution involved as partner.
More than 600 learners are already enrolled. The objective for 2004 is to reach more than one thousand learners. Sessions have already started with the Allama Iqbal Open University and the Alliance Française. Other partnerships are being established with the Punjab University in Lahore and the University of Agriculture in Faisalabad. In the spring semester 2004, “French Online” will be offered in the other areas of Pakistan, such as Gilgit, Skardu, Hunza, Hyderabad and Sialkot. It is a great deal in disseminating French language, especially in a country where French speakers are to be few thousands.
The flexibility of the distance learning and the good accessibility to the Internet in Pakistan allow the dissemination of French language. Indeed, French Online takes into account the personal constraints of each learner and emphasizes on the autonomy of learning.
More than fifty tutors have been trained in distance learning and French Online methodology. They are available in various regions of Pakistan, provide relevant information and guide learners in their progress. Face-to-face classes are held every two weeks in order to practice the language and meet the other learners. Day after day, a fantastic dynamic has been settled on the Net between the learners and the tutors via the Chat and forum services.
In view of enhancing the cooperation, French Online has established many partnerships:
The Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in South (COMSATS): this intergovernmental institution including twenty-one countries of the South is hosting the site and providing the maintenance and the technical assistance. COMSATS will extend the Internet coverage to the remote areas, which will contribute to the achievement of our goals.
The Allama Iqbal Open University, a great university of distance learning offers French Online as a certificate course.
The Punjab University in Lahore: prestigious university having a department of French will propose French Online in January 2004.
University of Agriculture of Faisalabad: one of the most important universities of agriculture in Asia will also propose French Online as a certificate course from January 2004.
The "Café Française" in Faisalabad: has been established by Pakistanis eager to speak French language. They organize conversation classes and use French Online method.
The network of the Alliance Française in Pakistan offers as well French Online course to the students who cannot attend the regular classes.
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