Students can elect to fulfill their requirements through a variety of courses ranging from the Middle Ages to the present, in all areas of the French-speaking world. They can also elect a curricular option that structures their courses according to a certain field of study. The Program offers five such options:
- The Translation Studies Option covers theories, techniques, terminology, and special problems in translation. A practicum provides for individual projects supervised by a faculty committee. Students are required to take a core of courses in a given field outside of French.
- The Comparative Studies Option includes basic courses in the theory and methods of comparing literatures, as well as study of the relations of French literature to the visual arts (such as film) and to other disciplines. An individual project is created with the help of a committee of faculty interested in interdisciplinary work.
- The Cultural Studies Option stresses the connections between French literature and other disciplines, and explores new theoretical frameworks for French Studies. It prepares doctoral candidates to teach civilization courses to undergraduates, as well as to think critically through a French curriculum that incorporates cultural theory.
- The International Issues in the French-speaking world Option focuses on questions of human rights and citizenship. This option draws in particular on a solid preparation in Francophone literature that provides a rich exploration of voice, identity, creolization, transnationalism, and migration. It also make use of courses addressing literature and politics and combines with credits taken outside of the French program in other disciplines, such as law, history, or political science, as well as other literatures. The option includes an internship with a human rights organization and a post-internship theoretical unit of study.
- The Performance Studies Option stresses the importance of modes of communication beyond the verbal text (acting, music, photography, etc.) in arts such as theater and cinema. It incorporates the study of literary and visual texts with a strong theoretical preparation, and with practical explorations of theoretical and creative modes in relation to performance in the French-speaking world.