The study of MFL can enrich pupils’ learning, raise self esteem and add fun and variety to the curriculum.

TMBSS offers modern foreign languages (Spanish, German and French) to pupils at our Education Centres and in some cases at home. Students may be KS3 or KS4 pupils who choose to study a foreign language for interest and/or towards GCSE qualifications. Transferred candidates may wish to complete an award which they have entered in their mainstream school.

Our MFL specialist teacher assesses pupils upon entry to ascertain their level in a language and whether further study and/or GCSE is possible. This depends on how much a language has been studied previously, the pupil’s ability and motivation, the time available and the workload a student may have. Taking into account these factors, it is not always possible to cover the full GCSE course so a short course may be an option. Our subject specialist teaches MFL in each centre if required. Pupils are taught individually or in small groups.

A flexible approach to teaching and learning is necessary to take in to account the diverse needs of our pupils.


Current year 11 pupils are entered for the OCR GCSE (full or short course) in French, German or Spanish.

Pupils cover five topic areas which provide contexts where they explore the target language countries and communities. The topics are as follows:

  • Home and Local Area
  • Health and Sport
  • Leisure and Entertainment (includes online)
  • Travel and the Wider World
  • Education and Work

The GCSE is made up of four units: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. 

The Listening and Reading units are externally assessed and take the form of a tiered (foundation or higher) exam at the end of the course and together count for 40% of the total GCSE marks.

For the Speaking and Writing units, candidates produce controlled assessment tasks on different topics of their choice, which together count for 60% of the total GCSE mark. Differentiation is by outcome. The Speaking tasks are internally assessed and externally moderated. The writing tasks are externally assessed.


Full details of the specification can be found on the OCR website. 


From September 2016 pupils will follow the new AQA GCSE (8658) course in French (for exams in 2018 onwards). This qualification is linear, meaning that pupils will sit all their exams at the end of the course. It has a Foundation Tier (grades 1-5) and a Higher Tier (grades 4-9) and pupils must take all four question papers (Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing) at the same tier. Each paper is 25% of the overall GCSE and externally marked.


The specification covers three distinct themes, which apply to all four papers. Candidates are expected to understand and provide information and opinions about these themes relating to their own experiences and those of other people, including people in countries/communities where French is spoken.

Theme 1: Identity and culture 

  • Me, my family and friends
  • Technology in everyday life
  • Free-time activities
  • Customs and Festivals in French-speaking countries and communities

Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest 

  • Home, town, neighbourhood and region
  • Social issues
  • Global issues
  • Travel and tourism

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment 

  • My studies
  • Life at school/college
  • Education post-16
  • Jobs, career choices and ambitions

Full details of the specification can be found on the AQA website.

Useful links and documents 

Secondary MFL Policy


GCSE Bitesize


languagesonline. – for interactive exercises

digital dialects  – for games


BBC Languages


zut.languageskills (free before 9am and after 4pm)


oye.languageskills (free before 9am and after 4pm)


gut.languageskills (free before 9am and after 4pm)

BBC Languages