France: How Does it Work?

Institut Catholique de Paris

Course Description

  • Course Name

    France: How Does it Work?

  • Host University

    Institut Catholique de Paris

  • Location

    Paris, France

  • Area of Study

    French Culture, Political Science

  • Language Level

    Advanced, High Advanced

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    "From daily life to the political life, everything you would want to know"

    Objective: To discover how life in France operates, by visiting essential functionalities of the country; for example, a courtroom or the Senate.

    -From the large political institutions to the various administrations, who does what?
    -To be born, live and die in France: the population, French territory, the national budget, political life, work, pastimes, health, education, culture, transportation, etc.

    -Written papers: based on field trips, or as commentary to a text; weekly review of course material
    -A comparative oral presentation: "How do things function here and in my own country: What are the differences and similarities?" (For example: the education system).
    -Comprehensive final exam

    (Attendance on the field trips and in the classroom is required; participation factors into the student's grade)

    Style of Instruction and Resources:
    -Most class periods will center on a visit, or a film/documentary, that illustrates the chosen topic, for example: the town hall.
    -Students will review explanatory tables and will be presented with government documents.
    -Role playing may be utilized to reinforce certain notions acquired during the visits.

    Tentative Weekly Schedule:

    Session 1: Presentation of France: The territory; Administrative division; The stages of history.
    Session 2: Health: health professions; Social Security and mutuals; prevention.
    Session 3: Education and the organization of education: cycles; training ; the diplomas
    Session 4: Work: Sectors of Activity; trade unions ; public service ; unemployment
    Session 5: Leisure and cultural life: leisure activities; tourism ; The defense of heritage
    Session 6: Political France (1): the institutions; powers
    Session 7: Political France (2): political parties; the elections
    Session 8: France Politics (concluded): A sitting in the Senate
    Session 9: Immigration: Historical; Policies; integration
    Session 10: Partial Testing + Transport: Automotive; National and local networks; The example of the RATP
    Session 11: Justice: litigation, misdemeanors and crimes; The various courts: a sitting in the courthouse.
    Session 12: The budget: revenues: taxes; Expenditure: the various budget items
    Session 13: Final Test
    Session 14: Summary Report: Role Play

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.