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National French Contest

The National French Contest, known as Le Grand Concours, is an annual competition organized by the American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) for students learning French. Each year, thousands of students participate, making it a significant event in the academic calendar for French learners and educators alike.
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National French Contest

Competition Overview

Students in grades 1-12 across various levels, from beginner to advanced
Entry fee
February 13 to April 7, 2025
Registration Period

Competition Details

1. Competition Categories

Grades 1-6 students will participate in the FLES (Français Langue Étrangère et Second) Contest, while Grades 7-12 students will participate in the Secondary Contest (levels 01-05).

2. FLES (Français Langue Étrangère et Second) Contest

Contest Date: February 12 – March 6, 2024

Release of National Results: Mid-April 2024

Awards: National Winners: Platinum, gold, silver, and bronze medals are awarded. Certificates are also available on the Lingco website.


  • 1A: Students in school grades 1, 2, 3. (Listening only and speaking if qualified.)
  • 2A: Grade 4; students in grades 5 or 6 who have just started French or are in strictly oral programs. (Listening only and speaking if qualified.)
  • 2B: Students in grades 5 or 6 with several years of French. Recommended for most 6th graders. Listening, Reading & Structure, and speaking if qualified.)
  • 3A: Students in grades 1, 2, or 3 who are in partial (500 minutes of French per week) or full immersion programs, students privately tutored for two or more years, all students studying in French-speaking countries, and/or students with more than one year of immersion preschool. (Listening section only and speaking if qualified.)
  • 3B: Same as Division 3A, but for students in grades 4, 5, or 6.
  • HORS CONCOURS: Students who speak French at home with any household member. These students must do Division 3A (Grades 1, 2, 3) or Division 3B (Grades 4, 5, 6). Hors Concours students are eligible for national prizes.

Students from at grade level 1-6 will take FLES except for: 

  • Student Grade 6, who begins a two-year course sequence equivalent to high school French 1, will take Concours level MS1 (Level 01). In 7th grade, they will take MS2 (Level 1); in 8th grade, they will go to Concours Level 2.

  • Students Grade 6 in a three-year course sequence equivalent to French 1 will take FLES; in 7th grade, they will take MS1 (Level 01), and in 8th grade, they will take MS2 (Level 1).

3. Secondary Contest

Contest Date: February 14 – April 8, 2024


  • MS1 (Level 01): Novice Low
  • MS2 (Level 1): Novice Mid
  • Level 1: Novice Mid
  • Level 2: Novice High
  • Level 3: Intermediate Low
  • Level 4: Intermediate Mid
  • Level 5: Intermediate High or Advanced Low

4. Divisions

In addition to levels, students with different levels of proficiency will participate in different divisions:

  • Division A – absolute beginner;
  • Division B – some outside background;
  • Division C – completely native;
  • Division D – different schedule/block/started next French course second semester;
  • Division E – not currently enrolled in a French class;
  • Division AP – a student taking Advanced Placement French.

Divisions A, C , D, and E apply to all levels, 01-5.

Division B is available at levels 01, 1, and 2. 

Division AP is only available to levels 4 and 5.

Students can’t take the same levels of Concours more than once. However, below are the exceptions: 

  • A high school requires all ninth graders to take French 1. If a student has previously taken Concours at level 1, they can either take Contest level 2, skip a year, or take level 1 Hors Concours (unranked).

  • Level 5 and FLES students (excluding MS1/level 01) may retake the same level.

  • Students can take Concours at the same level two years in a row if they provide proof, through their teacher, that they are repeating the same French course due to failing it previously.

Class Recommendation

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