Personnel enseignant

New French Spelling

The French language has evolved significantly over the last five centuries. In the last several years, there has been an international movement to bring forth spelling changes to the French language. These orthographic changes are intended to simplify the French language spelling by eliminating certain anomalies or irregularities.

The changes affect approximately 2000 words and are limited to the following five categories:

  • the use of the hyphen and its removal from certain compound words; 
  • the use of singular and plural rules related to compound words and foreign words; 
  • the use of accents and the dieresis; 
  • the use of double consonants with certain words and certain verbs; and
  • certain orthographic anomalies that have existed over time.
These orthographic changes have been approved by the Académie française and are official. Nonetheless, it will take time for these new changes to be implemented and to become part of regular usage. As such, both the traditional and the new spelling will be accepted. Neither spelling is considered incorrect. 

Since January 2009, all external communications, new programs of study, teacher or student materials developed by French Language Education Services Branch that use the new French spelling are identified with a descriptive sentence or with one of the official logos below:

            

To assist teachers and students in becoming familiar with the new spelling changes, the following links are provided.

 

General Information

Rule changes 

Practice Exercises

Other Support resources