Modern Foreign Languages

Aim of course

The aims of the GCSE course in a language is to develop understanding of the target language in a variety of contexts: including literature of the target language, knowledge of the language and language learning skills including translation (English into Target Language and Target Language into English), the ability to communicate effectively in the target language and an awareness and understanding of the countries and the communities where the target language is spoken.

Year 9

In Year 9 students continue developing their language skills in the language chosen in Year 8. They study the grammar and vocabulary needed at GCSE level, increasing the level of linguistic and cognitive demand. No external exams will be completed during Year 9 although internal tests and end of year exam will be assessed following the AQA GCSE criteria in all 4 skills. The new GCSE specification has an emphasis on grammar, translation, speaking and culture.

Method of assessment

Four equally weighted (25%) final exams (Listening, Reading, Speaking and Writing) as a 2 year linear course (Year 10 and 11). There is no controlled assessment. Speaking exams are conducted by the teacher but all exams will be externally assessed by the exam board. Exams in all four skills will be tiered, students must sit exams in all four skills at the same tier (Foundation or Higher).


The GCSE course is divided into 3 main themes, which are then taught into Units of work.

  • Theme 1 - Identity and culture
  • Theme 2 - Local, national, international and global areas of interest
  • Theme 3 - Current and future study and employment

Career Prospects/future use

GCSE and Sixth Form language students have many opportunities to enrich their language learning with extra-curricular and work experience like activities.

Occupations with contacts in target language-speaking countries (business, law firms, estate agents, publishers, news and media agencies), bilingual secretarial work, translator, interpreter, teacher, private tuition, tourism and travel (travel agency, courier, tour-operator, airport/airline staff) fashion, catering and the restaurant trade, film industry.

Recommended websites and reading

Linguascope Beginner and Intermediate , Active Learn Studio/Stimmt/Viva , BBC/Bitesize Languages, Bilingual Dictionary or, GCSE AQA French/German/Spanish For grade 1-9 Complete revision and Practice Guide, Mary Glasgow Magazines and short readers in MFL can be borrowed from the library.