University of Bristol – Language Gateways into the Professions: French for students of Aerospace and Avionic Engineering

Author(s): Teresa Birks
Institution/Organisation: CILT, the National Centre for Languages (UK)


Four British Universities, Bristol, Loughborough, Kingston and Salford, designed and piloted language modules linked to Engineering and Built Environment Degrees.  Within each University, a language expert work closely with a vocational expert to design the modules in consultation with employers and professional bodies such as the Engineering Council UK and RICS, Construction Skills.

Bristol University developed a 20 hour course in French to be taught over 10 weeks within the context of avionics. All the students are in the second year of an undergraduate degree in Aerospace/Avionic Engineering and are studying French on the "Study in Continental Europe" programme. They completed an extra 20 hours worth of self-study using bespoke online packages specifically for aerospace and aeronautics. The project involved successful collaboration with an important local employer, Airbus UK) and the appropriate professional body, ECUK.

All project partners have contributed to two fact sheets which make the case for languages in the Built Environment and Engineering. These will form part of CILT's Languages Work suite of publications.

Read the full-text Print this case study