Learning French as an Adult: A Review of Current Best Practices in Adult French-Language Training in Québec

2023 - 06 - 21


About this report

Cimminnee Holt, Policy Researcher, PERT

Sithandazile Kuzviwanza, Director of Policy & Research, PERT


Maria J. De Las Salas, Communications and Engagement Specialist, PERT

Nicholas Salter, Executive Director, PERT

Chad Walcott, Director of Engagement & Communications, PERT

Piers Young, Engagement Coordinator, PERT


This report offers a comprehensive view of the most effective methods for adult French-language education in Québec, with the goal of highlighting the achievements and lessons learned from adult French-language training in the province. 

In it, we learn from the perspectives of educators, administrators, and researchers working to improve adult French-language training in Québec. Through interviews with subject matter experts, ten (10) best practices emerged: plurilingualism, cultural exchange, confidence-building, lifelong learning, use of learning technology, flexible learning environments, work-integrated programs, supporting teaching personnel, limited class sizes, and low user fees.  


  • Increased investments in work-integrated language training programs.
    • Develop and fund programs for job-specific French-language training and French-language work placement programs.
    • Incentivize employees and employers to enroll and participate in work-integrated French-language training programs.
  • Increased investments to support the education workforce.
    • Invest in the recruitment, training and retention of French-language teachers and staff.
    • Collaborate with the education sector to establish resource centres for French-language teachers to share pedagogy.
    • Implement rapid-training programs to certify new teachers to deliver adult French-language training.
    • Integrate French-language mentors and volunteers into the learning ecosystem. 
  • Increased collaboration amongst program providers to develop and implement French-language training programs that include plurilingualism, cultural exchange, confidence-building and lifelong learning as main pedagogical approaches.
  • Develop and implement a strategy to better leverage technology to improve learner outcomes.
    • Increase access to online French-language training content.
    • Invest in learning technologies to facilitate autonomous learning.
    • Improve digital literacy among all Quebecers.
    • Expand high-speed internet infrastructure across Québec.
  • Expansion of the availability of affordable adult French-language training programs in order to lower barriers to accessing programs.
    • Increase the number of free or low-cost programs in order to lower financial barriers to accessing French-language training. 
    • Set limits for class sizes.
    • Ensure flexible learning environments by experimenting with in-person, hybrid and online learning options.