Télécom ParisTech

Examples of language activities

Discover India

Discover India, Thu. Jan. 8, 2015

Student film-makers: short films in Spanish

Alonso & Piotr BoradovskiProfesión : enamorada

As part of the B2 Spanish course in the Masters programme, Maria-Teresa Guilbert and Elisa Crespo’s students have written, shot and edited two short films in Spanish: Profesión: enamorada and Alonso Piotr Boradovski.

The film screening was held on 19 June 2014 before an enthusiastic audience: around 30 Télécom ParisTech students, lecturers and staff!

Debating : news from Oxford

Telecom Debating

The Oxford IV (Inter-Varsity) is the largest and most prestigious debating competition on the UK University circuit. It is hosted by the famous Oxford Union. During this debating tournament, we rubbed shoulders with students from Princeton, Yale, Stanford, Cornell, Oxford, Cambridge, LSE, UCL, SOAS…

Telecom ParisTech Debating Society  teams ranked 1st and 3rd in the last round in the 2012 tournament (November).

We advertised the Paris Open, to be held at Télécom ParisTech in April of 2013.

We recruited Talheel Lateef, a debating officer of the Cambridge Union Society, to give a an expert World Style debating workshop at Telecom ParisTech.

Margaux Penwarden

Our students are good English-speaking guides for American students...

Students from Janice Tabet’s English course (level B1-Pre-intermediate of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) invited ten students from the University of Chicago-Paris Campus on 23 May 2012 for a guided tour in English of the 13th arrondissement or administrative district.  This invitation was in response to one of 11 April by the University of Chicago on their campus as part of renewed exchanges between the institutions...

Our students designed a well-researched route for the visit which started in front of the Manufacture des Gobelins tapestry and tapestry-manufacturing museum, and went via the Château de la Reine Blanche, the former bed of the Bièvre river, René Le Gall square, Place Paul Verlaine to end at the Butte aux Cailles neighbourhood.

They gave the American students a very interesting historical insight into, among many others, the Gobelins tapestries, the dyers and tanners of the Bièvre river, l’Ile aux Singes (Monkey Island), the landing of the first hot-air balloon and the history of the Commune movement at Butte aux Cailles.

The students had also prepared a cocktail on their return to school which was very much appreciated by the guests...

English Theatre for the Gustave Eiffel preparatory class for graduate school!

Crazy For You !

The preparatory class in Technology and Industrial Sciences (TSI) for admission to graduate school from the Gustave Eiffel high school came to Télécom ParisTech on 13 June 2012 with their teachers to attend Crazy for You! performed by the graduate school’s English theatre  group.  Members of Passeport Avenir (Passport to the Future), the partnership which initiated contact between the Télécom ParisTech graduate school and the Gustave Eiffel high school,  came with them.

This end of year visit to the graduate school marks the traditional end of a program which this class has just undertaken: a weekend course in English from the end of March to “trigger” that language, if required, enabling real “production” of English (often the students are surprised themselves!).  Having made such efforts for the period of one weekend in June, they appreciate the true value of the work carried out by our students in producing a play in English over one year.

Cross-Cultural Connections: synchronous and asynchronous trans-Atlantic exchanges


This article (in French) published by the The French Review  (American Association of Teachers of French, déc. 2011 ) presents the "Cross-Cultural Connections" project, started in 2003 between Smith College (Massachusetts, USA) and Telecom ParisTech. Every Friday during one semester, the students meet using webcams to have conversations in small groups, punctuated by three videoconferences when the whole classes meet together. These synchronous conversations are complemented by a series of asynchronous activities that take place throughout the semester (MIT Cultura questionnaires, forums, autobiographies, cultural "picture presents", comparing movies—a French original and an American remake, sharing favorite songs). This approach, facilitating an ongoing conversation among the students and the comparison of multiple aspects of the two cultures, aims at increasing the students’ linguistic and intercultural skills and making them less ethnocentric.

Christiane Métral (Smith College, MA) & James Benenson (Telecom ParisTech, Paris)

Paris seen by foreign students

An example of an intercultural activity: a photo exhibition entitled Regards d'étudiants étrangers sur Paris (Paris seen by foreign students)

Spanish becomes part of the LH (student’s weekly newsletter)

drapeau espagnol

This is an initiative of Elisa Crepso; a teacher on the advanced level Spanish course.  In order to practise their writing skills, pupils write “El minuto español“ (the Spanish minute) in Spanish for the LH newsletter.  In a recent issue, LH dedicated a page to 6 December, which is Constitution Day in Spain and the anniversary of the 1978 referendum, followed by a page about Spanish bars and restaurants in Paris (December 2012).

Activities in Japanese

Drapeau du Japon

Partnerships, year-end dinner

At the end of the school year, some 60 participants enjoyed a Japanese dinner prepared by our students and their Japanese partners participating in the Languages and Cultures Department’s tandem program.

In progress

Some 50 students are taking Japanese courses and about 20 French-Japanese pairs have been formed.

Atsuko Sasaki, Japanese Professor at Telecom ParisTech

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German course and trip to Vienna

Drapeau de l'Autriche

Karin Illner and the Languages and Cultures Department organised a trip to Vienna from 20th to 22nd May 2010 for five first- and second-year students, with three goals:

  • A scientific visit and exchange with the students of two scientific universities in Vienna: Universität Wien (the physics department) and Technische Universität -TU (technical University), which already work with Télécom ParisTech in the ATHENS program.
  • To practice German during their exposés presenting Télécom ParisTech, or when taking courses and conferences at the universities visited, and in discussions with Austrian students.
  • A cultural visit related to the courses dispensed at the Languages and Cultures Department (levels A2 and B1 in German).

The Austrians really appreciated the visit by our students and their presentation of our school, and have expressed a desire to continue these contacts in the future. Our students were also very satisfied with the trip.

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Solidarity tourism in Chile

Drapeau du Chili

In July 2010, six first-year Spanish students from Telecom ParisTech did their internship in Huara, a village in northern Chile, supervised by local communities, essentially, Aymara Indians: guide, home stay, transportation, etc., through the international association ASE (Art - Sport - Entraide) .

The students helped develop a Solidarity Tourism Itinerary with the local people to profit local communities (Pisagua, Tiliviche, MiniMine, Tarapaca, Huavina, Chiapa, Jaina, Pachica, Punta Pinchalo, Uscuma, as well as the extensions: Huara, Lauca and San Pedro de Atacama).

A number of projects were completed, including the installation of a goat barn and a cheese house built by Ecole Polytechnique and Télécom ParisTech students. A new project is being examined to use this tool to prepare guava jams and juices.

Supervisors were very pleased by our students and their contribution!

Isabel Le Bonhomme, Languages and Cultures Department at Télécom ParisTech and Latin American geographic correspondent

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Trip to Madrid, and Spanish studies in Paris

Drapeau de l'Espagne

Two years of linguistic and cultural work in the Spanish course of the Languages and Cultures Department were concluded with 12 second-year students travelling to Madrid from 28th April to 2nd May 2010.

This trip gave students an opportunity to use their Spanish language and cultural knowledge, and to visit a partner university (ETSIT) where they can study in their third year, for a semester or a dual degree.

We also have received four dual-degree students from Madrid University, who arrived in September. We also have welcomed a dual-degree student from ETSETB in Barcelona at the school.

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« Managing Communication in an International Context »

A multilingual team from the Languages and Cultures Department taught a course called “Managing Communication in an International Context” for human training during the ATHENS week from 15th to 19th November 2010.

  • 18 students from five ParisTech schools (Agro, Chimie, ENSTA, Mines, Télécom)
  • students from Delft, Madrid, Munich, Prague, Vienna
  • including students from French Guyana, Hong Kong, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Senegal and Tahiti
  • having lived in the United States, China, the UK, etc.

These students spent at least 30 hours together exploring intercultural aspects of the business world:

  • interactive teaching
  • theoretical and methodological points
  • role play, videos
  • case studies, exercises
  • a final project of skits performed by small groups

This week helped the young people learn from each other, as seen in both their behaviour and their comments at the end of the course. A wonderful opportunity to “live internationally at school”!

Vera Dickman, James Benenson, Veronika Bayer, Nathan Arthur

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