Modern Languages

We look to equip Fettesians with the language and communication skills required for top careers in the modern global marketplace. Graduates with fluency in additional languages go on to better employment prospects and higher wages.

At Fettes, students study two modern languages in the Third Form, choosing from French and ab initio courses in German, Mandarin and Spanish. All students go on to study at least one language at GCSE. At Sixth Form, they can choose between studying languages as part of the IB diploma or those wishing to specialise can opt for the Cambridge Pre-U courses.

State-of-the-art Facilities

The department is housed in the purpose-built Spens Building, opened in January 2016. Each classroom is equipped with a C-touch board and Apple TV with reflective technology, and there are rooms for the language assistants who meet weekly with students for one-to-one oral lessons. Students have access to a class set of iPads to promote independent and interactive learning. The school VLE allows us to host blogs, build reference pages and make video tutorials.

Language and Culture Immersion

The Modern Foreign Languages department likes to involve the whole school in its celebration of international dates such as the European Day of Languages, El Día de los Muertos, German Unification Day, Chinese New Year, Carnival Week, Eurovision Song Contest and international film festivals. We run a popular programme of trips to China, France, Germany and Spain; immersion in the culture and language is a crucial part of the learning process.

Tailored Academic Enrichment

A host of tailored academic events are available, including essay and translation competitions, foreign language debates, immersion days with partnership schools, talks from visiting scholars, links with Edinburgh University, the UK Linguistics Olympiad and foreign language plays. Pupils can also take leadership roles with the Language Leaders group in the middle school and the MFL Society in the Sixth Form.

Additional academic opportunities are available with department mentors who develop personalised programmes that stretch students beyond the curriculum and prepare students for Oxbridge entrance and other competitive university courses.

Follow the latest goings-on in the Modern Languages Department on their Twitter feed, @FettesLanguages.