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TAC ’15 French Spanish Celtic Adv Study

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sctroyenne
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Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 185 of 336
24 December 2013 at 4:53am | IP Logged 
Before delving into the speaking guidelines from the same source as above, I did some research with my French friends for resources I can try that would give me analysis of media coverage, of political "spin", and general debate, which I'll go ahead and list here:

Le Petit Journal (similar to the Daily Show)
Arrêt sur Images
Semioblog
Médias le Magazine (will have to see if this is accessible abroad without a VPN)
and a little bonus that looks interesting Le blog des correcteurs du Monde.fr

et bien sur, radio shows from RTL, France Inter, France Culture, and articles from Le Monde Diplomatique
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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 186 of 336
24 December 2013 at 5:10am | IP Logged 
Ok, now some proficiency guidelines for speaking at the Advanced, Superior, and Distinguished levels:

Speaking

Advanced

This is the first stage where you will feel comfortable living, working or studying in a country where the target language is spoken. It will allow you to meet people, to socialize with them and to take care of your basic job requirements, although in a limited way.
     
People will understand you without much difficulty and you will be able to deal with most face-to-face conversations on concrete topics with slight complications. You will probably be understood by people not used to dealing with foreigners, although they (and you) might find communication tiring after some time. You would still grope for words at times. Usually, this is the highest level you can expect to attain without spending time living in a community where the language is spoken.

Here are the kinds of things you should be able to say at Advanced level:

     
    -Describe a sequence of events that happened in the past
    -Describe things that used to happen in the past, such as things you used to do when you were younger, or people and places you used to know or visit
    -Compare and contrast two objects, customs or places
    -Talk about your future plans or goals
    -Explain a simple process you know how to do, such as making a cake or repairing a tire
    -Give instructions about what you would like someone to do, explaining the steps involved in carrying out an activity, such as when telling a housekeeper how you would like her to wash the clothes
    -Give a brief, organized, factual summary of what happened in an event you attended
    -Give advice to someone faced with making a decision, giving reasons for your advice
    -Lodge a complaint, giving the reasons and details of why you are dissatisfied
    -Express personal apologies clearly and appropriately to someone you have offended
    -State the advantages and disadvantages of a situation or a decision
    -Tell someone what you would do in a hypothetical situation, such as if you suddenly received a lot of money
    -Answer the telephone at home or at work
    -Describe your job and the organization you work for
    -Direct people to the right building or office
    -Handle simple job-related inquiries


Superior

You should aim for this level if you

     
    -plan to live for some years in a country
    -need the language to carry out fully your job responsibilities
    -have a very strong interest in the language
    -are interested in the country where the language is spoken, and
    -want to make close relationships with people who speak the language.

     
If you get there, you will speak fluently and rarely make grammatical mistakes that bother native speakers. You may still have to search for a word occasionally, but will be able to come up with another way to say what you want. You will be able to talk about a full range of topics and deal with people on a professional level.

     
You can expect to spend months or even years in the language community before you reach this level, as it involves sociolinguistic competence. This proficiency can only be developed by experiencing language in a large number of social situations.

Here are the kinds of things you should be able to say at Superior level:

     
    -Persuade people to do something they do not want to do or to stop doing something you do not like
    -Describe a complex object, such as a car or bicycle or computer in detail, using the correct vocabulary
    -Present arguments on both sides of a familiar issue or topic and evaluate the merits of the arguments
    -Discuss a professional topic at length
    -Explain in detail a non-routine, complex process, such as how to do grammatical analysis or how to perform an operation
    -Present a talk at a professional meeting
    -Tell someone in detail the possible consequences of a certain situation, for example, if the price of coffee were to rise suddenly
    -Express what you think might happen if something unexpected occurs
    -Propose a course of action and defend your proposal in such a way that people might be persuaded to accept your idea
    -State a personal point of view on a subject, including controversial issues, explaining why you hold your beliefs
    -Handle formal business situations
    -Talk to dignitaries or influential people
    -Discuss issues in the news


Distinguished

If you want to speak the language almost like a mother-tongue speaker, you will need many years in the speech community, and have to work at learning after you can communicate the basics.
     
Very few people achieve this goal unless they emigrate to another country relatively early in life, but it is possible and is a worthy goal. You need this proficiency if your job requires, diplomacy, the ability to express sophisticated nuances of meaning, the ability to hint at things not directly expressed.

Here are the kinds of things you should be able to say at Distinguished level:

     
    -Do informal interpreting
    -Take part in mediating or negotiating between two parties
    -Discuss in detail highly abstract or unfamiliar topics
    -Tailor the style and content of your presentation on the spur of the moment to an audience different from the one you had expected


Now, this list seems to me a bit harder to directly translate with the CEFR scale. The description of Advanced sounds like a mix between B1-B2 (that, or I highly over-estimate what a speaker at B2 can do), while Superior sounds like a mix between C1-C2. I'd say that maybe I'm just underestimating what C1 should be capable of but it seems if you can perform everything on that list on a C2 exam, you would pass (unless I'm mistaken). The Distinguished list sounds like what is attainable beyond C2 - what a lot of people would consider perfectly bilingual.

It's really nice to see the guidelines spelled out in this way - it basically shows a learner what grammar and core vocabulary needs to be covered to tackle the next step, which provides much-needed guidance for the advanced+ students.
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sctroyenne
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United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 187 of 336
27 December 2013 at 6:36pm | IP Logged 
I was inspired about all my talk about how to "level up" in French at the advanced level to seek out some Memrise Advanced French courses. They have quite a bit of review, some new stuff, and some stuff that isn't quite new but certainly not part of my active vocabulary. I have a pretty rich spoken English vocabulary so it'd be nice to get some more richness in French. I already found one I like: auréolé de which can mean "basking in" (glory, victory, etc).

I've been listening to podcasts again. I do have trouble with tuning out during the 50-minute long one about economic news. It is a hard subject in general and it can be hard to follow when they're talking about things that I don't have enough knowledge about (such as how medical coverage works and how doctors are classed into groups according to if they only charge the amount reimbursed by the state or more and, if more, options for paying the full bill, etc). Plus they cover about 3-4 different topics in the same podcast so it may be easier to find one that's shorter and split up by topic but I guess expanding my ability to follow a show like this is part of levelling up my listening skills.

I'd like to find a good system or "workflow" for pulling up streaming video to watch every day. Ever since Google Reader went down I've fallen out of the habit of following RSS feeds. I'm assuming for queuing up video to watch I'll need some kind of feed reader.

And now that I've been doing some work in French I haven't been keeping up with Irish. I defintiely need to work on balancing my languages, especially since I'll need regular contact with French if I want to improve at this level.
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Indíritheach
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108 posts - 146 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Irish, French

 
 Message 188 of 336
27 December 2013 at 10:24pm | IP Logged 
An bhfuair tú AifricSpongebob Squarepants DVDs faoin Nollaig i mbliana?

Edited by Indíritheach on 27 December 2013 at 10:25pm

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sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 189 of 336
28 December 2013 at 12:31am | IP Logged 
Ni bhfair. Bhí cearthaí ag mo mhathair faoi ag úsáid a cárta creidmheasa ar láithreán gréasáin coigríche. Ach deir sí is feidir liom iad a ordú mé féin.

And I'm sure that's a total mess, so <i>as béarla</i>: No, my mother was nervous about using her credit card on a foreign web site. But she said I can order them myself.
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Indíritheach
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2641 days ago

108 posts - 146 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Irish, French

 
 Message 190 of 336
28 December 2013 at 12:58am | IP Logged 
sctroyenne wrote:
Ni bhfair. Bhí cearthaí ag mo mhathair faoi ag úsáid a cárta creidmheasa ar láithreán gréasáin coigríche. Ach deir sí is feidir liom iad a ordú mé féin.

And I'm sure that's a total mess, so <i>as béarla</i>: No, my mother was nervous about using her credit card on a foreign web site. But she said I can order them myself.


I understood most of it! But how cool...tell me, do you have a Region 2 DVD player or are you planning on using VLC media player to watch it?
1 person has voted this message useful



sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 191 of 336
28 December 2013 at 1:34am | IP Logged 
I use VLC and I also have hook ups to connect my laptop to the TV if I want.

Oh, and I finally got a response. The Aifric DVD apparently only has English subtitles, no closed captioning.
1 person has voted this message useful



sctroyenne
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3987 days ago

739 posts - 1312 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Spanish, Irish

 
 Message 192 of 336
29 December 2013 at 3:44am | IP Logged 
I got dental work done this weekend (getting my insurance paid out by end of year) so just lounging around and relaxing. Put the DVD of Por Ella Soy Eva on for a while. It's nice seeing it from the beginning so that some of the story lines make sense, though I made it to the point where I had started watching it on television and now seeing how they truncate it is frustrating. Obviously it's not practical to release all the full episodes on DVD since it would be way too long (and pretty torturous to sit through while marathoning it). But there are some scenes that I miss and some places where I notice they sacrificed important character development (the male lead goes from being a male chauvinist philanderer to falling in love, wanting to get married, and getting in touch with his feminine side). But I find it pretty difficult to keep up with a long telenovela as it airs so that's a sacrifice that just has to be made (I read they didn't used to have so many episodes but since the longer ones got popular they've been producing more 150+ episode series). They cut the series down to 14 hours which means I don't get nearly the same benefit in completing it as if I follow the whole thing but it's definitely easier to keep up with.

I took the final test in Grammaire Progressive du Français to see which specific areas I need to pinpoint. It'd be ideal if they listed the relevant lessons for each question but I'll just need to categorize my errors myself. Looks like I'll have some detailed preposition work to do. Also conjunctions of opposition - which is funny because while doing study abroad, the one day of the intensive grammar course that I missed was the day the teacher covered opposition and to this day I have every other category she covered nailed down but this one.


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