The French Test

The French test is scheduled to take place in September, usually during the first week of term.

Every student is required to sit for the French test, unless they meet one of the exemptions below (scroll down). The test consists of a strong portion of listening comprehension which will test students’ ability to understand and, in some cases, analyze what is being said in a series of French spoken texts. However, the test of course changes every year.

GISA Recommendation: To prepare for the test, work on your listening comprehension through audio programs (we recommend Pimsleur, which is quite good) or even through simply listening to French movies, at first with your native language subtitles and then without them. Work on reading comprehension through reading French newspapers online (try Le Monde, Liberation, Figaro); even an article a day can help you build your French up a bit more prior to arriving in Geneva.

If you do not pass this test, you will be able to take it again the following year after taking the weekly French classes during semesters 1 and 2.

Exemptions from the French test

Students will not be required to take the French test if they:

  • are French native speakers
  • have completed secondary education in French, attested by the diploma
  • have completed at least one year of university studies through French, attested by the transcript
  • submit a French language certificate equivalent to or higher than a DELF B2 level

Make sure you bring any documents related to your French level with you when you arrive in Geneva.

More courses and resources

There are a number of resources available if you would like to improve your French with supplementary courses or “tandem” language exchanges. Visit the learning French page for more information.

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