The best preparation for the listening paper is exposure to a wide range of spoken French. There are many ways of practicing as most French TV channels and radio stations retransmit their broadcasts on the Internet.


Train with radio programs


Although you can start with TV programs, I recommend that you train with radio programs. The images are a strong vector of understanding that you will not have in the examination.

Most oral documents are from the French national radio stations and especially France Inter. If you have iTunes, you could download the broadcasts and listen to some podcasts whenever you have free time. All the more, you can rewind and listen again to the passages you did not understand well.

 When you go to the France Inter website you will find many different programs and you may feel lost about which one to choose. Therefore I advise you to listen to “Le 7/9” and “Service Public” from which you will kill two birds with one stone. In addition to listening practice, you will keep abreast of the French current events and you will pick up useful new arguments for the writing and speaking papers.

The other essential website is RFI (Radio France International).

When you are on the website you click on “Langue Française” and then on “Exercices d’écoute”. Several reports are available with questions.

The additional advantage is found in the variety of accents.



Practice your oral comprehension with specific questions


If you want to prepare yourself by watching documentaries and answering questions, you can go to the excellent website “7 jours sur la planète” in which exercises on line are suggested in three documentaries broadcast during the week on different French speaking TV channels.

It also means that each week you will get new listening exercises. The questions are ranked from the easiest to the most difficult level.


Underline the key words in the questions with a highlighter