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College of Humanities & Sciences

School of World Studies




At least 200 million people in over 30 countries speak French. The School of World Studies French program ensures its students gain a rich understanding of not only the language but cultures and histories of the Francophone world.

We offer a Major in Foreign Language with a Concentration in French as well as a French Minor. Our coursework includes French language, literature, film, history, pop culture and politics.  The plan of study and major map provide further guidance.

The School of World Studies is distinct for our focus on experiential learning which help you make it real through immersion in real world cross cultural exchange. The French program offers experiential learning through study abroad, internships and other opportunities.  


Why Study French?

The School of World Studies French Program prepares its majors and minors for careers in teaching, translation, international relations, and diplomacy. Furthermore, we foster the critical thinking, adaptive communication and cultural fluency skills necessary to succeed in a globalized economy. 

Our faculty boasts native French speakers as well as dedicated Francophiles. Learn more about our faculty here.

To learn how a major or minor in French can help you with your academic and professional goals, contact academic advising.


French Film Festival

For over 30 years, VCU has hosted the annual French Film Festival, the largest showing of French movies in the United States. One of Richmond’s most notable events, the festival draws actors, directors and other talent from throughout the Francophone world. For some of these movies, the French Film Festival offers the only showing in this country.

This packed, multi-day event offers students of French a rare opportunity to immerse themselves in the Francophone world without leaving central Virginia.


VCU French West Africa

The overarching goal of the VCU French West Africa project is to promote U.S.--Africa relations while fostering peace and economic growth. The project primarily focuses on Mali and the Ivory Coast and was founded in 2012.

Participating faculty and students research language, healthcare, business and anthropology while in Africa as well as interacting with local public schools. This research has subsequently resulted in books, articles and workshops. School of World Studies professors Patricia Cummins, Ph.D., Christopher Brooks, Ph.D., and Kathryn Murphy-Judy, Ph.D., have been heavily involved in the program.

This program also connects French language classes at VCU with English language classes in Mali and the Ivory Coast.

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