Browse course samples and faculty profiles for French language study within our graduate programs.
French Course Samples
FRLA 8423 - Business Models for Sustainable Development - Prof. Michel Gueldry
This class combines the “big picture” through the study of several competing and complementary economic theories for sustainable development, with a “how to” approach through the study of multiple case studies of sustainable companies and models of business plans. The class starts (around 7 weeks) with the founding concepts of sustainability and competing economic theories that propose various scenarios and solutions for sustainable development, including: neoclassical economics, ecological economics, corporate social responsibility, and industrial ecology. Next, we spend about 7 weeks on pragmatic examples, case studies and practical application. We look into contrasting examples of social entrepreneurship and CSR firms and examine business plans for sustainable development.
Students choose their own case studies and examples to examine in light of the economic theories and overall objectives of sustainable development. Students also choose about one-third of their individual deliverables.
The class concludes with an examination of the job market for sustainability experts: we examine the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP)’s surveys regarding needed professional skills, compensation for professionals, the U.S. job market and regional trends in the U.S.
This class is especially suited for Green MBA students, International Environmental Policy students, or if you’re interested in social entrepreneurship, development, or social change (e..g. MPA) through business.
FRLA 8377 - Resources, Conflict and Security – Prof. Michel Gueldry
The environment, climate change and natural resources (too little, too much, unequal distribution within a society, etc.) play a key role in human security, social stability, international relations, contemporary geopolitics and the Great Game among nations. In order to understand these interrelated forces, our class studies the following:
During the first four weeks, we propose a general introduction to security studies: what are contemporary forms of security and insecurity? What are “hybrid” threats, etc.? What are the connections between resources and (in) security? For instance, how does the Dutch disease and resource curse play out in relations to other social, demographic, political, cultural stressors? Then, for about 5 weeks, we focus on several key resources (oil, water, food, land, etc.) and conditions (climate change) and their impact in terms of security. We study these factors through several regional case studies (Middle East-North Africa, Arctic, sub-Saharan Africa mostly).
Students chose the topics for the rest of the class (around 6 weeks) based on their specialization, preferences and interests. Students also choose about one-third of their individual deliverables.
This class is especially suited if you’re interested in the following: MPA, social change and social entrepreneurship, food security and sovereignty, MBA and green business, international development, conflict resolution, international environmental policy, human security, international security, and counter-terrorism studies
FRLA 8445 Intercultural Communication: US and European Cultures Compared – Prof. Michel Gueldry
How do these parent civilizations compare in terms of culture? In order to explore this vast question, we focus on several complementary levels or aspects of culture. First, we start with a general introduction to intercultural studies, some key concepts and theories, and a tool box of expressions, categories, and concepts. Next, we consider these national syntheses: what does it mean to be American or European – and what are the main variations among Europeans in terms, again, of national culture? For instance, we compare the sense of time and space, individualism and community, the sense of belonging (nationalism and patriotism) vs. exclusion (majority vs. minority), as well as key creeds and belief (religion, social values), etc.
Next, we switch to the interplay between yourself /yourself and two kinds of environments that help mold oneself: the immediate environment (ethnicity, family, generation, socio-economic conditions, personal life orientations) and the wider world (national culture, historical period, wider socio-economic forces, etc.). Our purpose is to create an individual narrative for each student that combines storytelling, micro-history, autobiographical awareness in the context of the subjective self and the wider, objective world.
FRLA 8464 Individualized and Common Projects - Prof. Michel Gueldry
Sometimes, our regular course offering does not work for some students for a variety of reasons (timing, language level, interests or specializations, previous professional experience, etc.). In that case, I occasionally offer this class -- generally for advanced students who have a purpose, a project, and can work autonomously. We totally negotiate and co-create our syllabus, the topics of our class, your individual deliverables, and the pedagogical and professional purposes we strive to achieve. Thus, no two such classes are alike. They are usually reserved for strongly motivated individuals with previous MIIS experience, a clear understanding of their specialization, as well as superior linguistic proficiency.
FRLA 8342 Challenges in Peace Building – Prof. Edgard Coly
This course aims to highlight the complexity and challenges of building peace in societies that are involved in violent conflict or are emerging from it. Students will learn and understand the characteristics of divided societies and the nature of conflicts among its various ethnic groups. Through a study of cases, such as Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal etc., the theories of peace building will be explained. Each approach to peace building must take into account the root of the conflict, keeping in mind the cultural aspects that may or may not be unique to each society.
FRLA 8435 Public Health in Sub-Saharan Africa – Prof. Edgard Coly
This course explores the most pressing health issues in Sub-Saharan Africa. The focus is on the following:
- The work of African governments and NGOs in the area of public health: policies, awareness, funding etc.
- Infectious diseases (AIDS not included)
- HIV – AIDS
- Access to drinking water and decontamination
- Immigration and public health
- Public health in times of conflict
FRLA 8485 Security and Development in Africa – Prof. Edgard Coly
This class addresses how security – or the lack – of affects development, especially the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
In the wake of the Cold War, many global social problems have emerged that have engaged the international community. One of these problem is the growing level of insecurity and armed violence that is preventing and interfering with desperately needed economic, social and political development (good governance), especially in fragile states emerging from conflict.
This course explores the following:
- Human security: lack of freedom, injustice, forced (im)migrations
- Proliferation of small and light arms in conflict and post conflict zones
- Disarmament, demobilization and reinsertion of ex-combatants
- Gender violence and inequality
FRLA 8497 Human Security – Prof. Edgard Coly
This course introduces the concept of human security, its development and real-world applications, and implications for international policy through illustrative case examples.
The concept of Human security was first introduced in the 1994 Human Development Report by the United Nations Development Program. It has since attracted growing attention in the academic and policy communities around the world. The concept has also become part of official policy, particularly in Japan and Canada. In contrast to the traditional concept of “national security” with its focus on the security of the state against military threats, Human security emphasizes the protection of individual citizens’ security not only from war and other forms of physical violence but also from threats of political, economic, social, cultural and environmental nature. At the most fundamental level, Human security has two components: human development and human dignity / human rights.
French Studies Faculty
African politics and cultures, Africa in the arena of globalization, contemporary France, Francophone literature, twentieth century French literature, postmodernism and postcolonial theory
French politics, business and history, French language, cinema and civilization; Western Europe; European Union, European integration, transatlantic relations, language pedagogy and content-based instruction (Monterey Model), sustainability studies (in connection with business, international relations and cultural/psychological forces)
My main area of expertise is second language development & technology. In particular, my dissertation focuses on Language Learning Social Networks (LLSNs) and the interchange of languages as part of the curriculum. In this field I like to see myself not only as a researcher but also as a practitioner, relentlessly willing to improve and develop spaces and resources for open online language learning. Other areas of research and professional experience include journalism, study abroad, web development, sociolinguistics, and film studies.