Thanks to the Alliance Française, I have embarked on the most intellectually challenging and academically enriching experience I ever could have hoped for. Since August 2021, I have been studying at the Poitiers campus of the SciencesPo network, a Grand-École whose education divides regional specializations into different French cities, in my case, my focus is on Latin-America and the Caribbean. Last year, in preparation for my entry exams, my mother sought out the Alliance Française for writing and speaking practise, for my admissions essays and interview. These classes were not only the highlight of my lockdown, but further instrumental to all that I have gained today. Amongst rigorous learning of eloquent French structures, I also discovered and sharpened my analysis of a number of fascinating topics.
I cannot emphasise enough how crucial this step was and how grateful I am to the Alliance Française. I strongly encourage all to contact the Alliance if you are motivated to apply for the Grand-écoles in France at any level. Equally, and I hope it goes without saying, the Alliance is filled with incredibly kind, supportive and doggedly intelligent people who offer classes in language learning for the DELF and DALF exams. The classes are well-rounded, the teachers' enthusiastic and committed to their fair and prompt marking, and always highly engaging.
I sat my IRN TEF exam last Friday at the Alliance Francaise Exam Centre in Cambridge, and am very pleased that only four days later I received an email to confirm that I had passed with a level B1. This means that I can now apply for French nationality, as I am planning to spend more time in France in my retirement. My husband is French and my children have dual nationality, so by taking the TEF, I too can now have dual nationality and not be bound by how many days I can spend in France. I believe I was the first candidate to sit the new exam format in Cambridge, but it was relatively straight forward. After having watched a few suggested tutorials and practised with the app ‘Francais 3.0,’ I felt familiar with the types of tasks I would be asked to do. The staff at Alliance Francaise were really welcoming and supportive which helped me feel at ease, as I hadn’t sat an exam for many years. I was therefore relieved to have passed, and look forward to embracing my new nationality very soon.
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