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BA Latin and Spanish / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

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Course unit details:
Catalan Language & Culture 1

Unit code SPLA53010
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Spanish, Portuguese and Latin
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


The course consists of language tuition for beginners in spoken and written Catalan. The course aims to provide students with intensive teaching in Catalan grammar, syntax and vocabulary. Further it also aims to provide students with writing, oral and comprehension skills in the Catalan language, through a range of written, communicative and practical exercises. At the end of the unit, students are expected to perform in Catalan at level A2 of the Common European Framework.

The course will also provide students a working knowledge of some key areas of Catalan culture and literature. Through a set of presentations, students will be given insights into a variety of topics related to sociolinguistcs, history, music, and literature, among others.


  • • to gain a broad understanding of Catalan grammar and syntax.
    • to use spoken Catalan to cope with real-life situations and to communicate confidently  

    • to write compositions in Catalan and write summaries in Catalan of adapted Catalan texts

    • to gain familiarity with Catalan culture and literature

    • to make links between Catalan language and culture



Nouns: singular, plural, common derivative morphemes

Adjectives: agreement with nouns

Determinants: article, demonstrative, possessive, interrogative

Adverbs of frequency

Comparatives and superlatives

Common uncountable nouns

Present tense

Past tense: imperfective and perfect tense


Prepositions: of place, of time

Pronouns: personal, verbal


Vocabulary related to:

Names of countries


Professions, including names ending in –ista / -er / -or / -aire

Daily activities

Time and appointments

Parts of the day

Days of the week

Rooms of the house

Directions: a la dreta, a dalt

Names and adjectives for places: the city and the countryside

Adjectives for people

Quantity: una mica, molt, gens, poc

The family

Shops and food


Oral and reading:

At the end of the course, students will be able to understand and use familiar, everyday expressions and simple sentences, which relate to the satisfying of concrete needs. They will be able to introduce themselves and others as well as ask others about themselves – e.g. where they live, who they know and what they own – and can respond to questions of this nature.



The main topics will focus on the sociolinguistic situation of Catalan, the political situation in Catalonia post-1975, selected texts by key literary authors (e.g. Quim Monzó, Jesús Moncada, Maria Mercè Marçal), and recent trends in rock music .

Teaching and learning methods

Reading, writing, listening and speaking exercises will be performed in class, focusing on the use of the language. Also, students will be asked to deliver 2 oral presentations to raise awareness on Catalan culture.

Materials will be available on Blackboard as the course progresses as well as supplementary resources (extra hand-outs or online materials). 

The languages of teaching will be English and Catalan.

Knowledge and understanding

By the end of this unit students will be able to:

  • perform in Catalan at level A2 of the Common European Framework
  • demonstrate a broad active and passive knowledge of the grammatical structures of the Catalan language
  • communicate effectively in written and oral Catalan with a degree of confidence and accuracy in a variety of situations
  • reflect upon some aspects of Catalan culture and literature

Intellectual skills

By the end of this unit students will be able to:

• develop powers of analysis and use them to solve language problems and misconceptions

• demonstrate cultural awareness

• work in groups

• express coherent ideas and arguments in spoken Catalan

Practical skills

  • Students will have the opportunity to get one of the scholarships offered by the Catalan Government to take a Catalan Language and Culture course in Catalonia in order to enhance the skills learned during the course

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • the ability to manage time effectively and to work to deadlines
  • the ability to communicate and to improve presentation skills, both oral and written 
  • the ability to undertake independent learning
  • the ability to participate in team work, both inside and outside the classroom


Assessment methods


Assessment task

Formative or Summative


Weighting within unit (if summative)

Grammar and vocabulary test at the end of Semester 1 – Week 12


1 hour


Written examination at the end of Semester 2


1.5 hours


Oral examination at the end of Semester 2


10 minutes


2 Oral group presentations (in English) on a cultural topic; one each Semester

Formative and Summative

Semester 1: 15-20 minutes

Semester 2: 20-25 minutes

Semester 1: 6%

Semester 2: 9%

2 Written tasks; these tasks are formative for the written and oral exams in Semester 2

Formative and summative

Semester 1: 150-175 words (aprox.)

Semester 2: 200-225 words (aprox.)

Semester 1: 6%

Semester 2: 9%




Assessment task



2 hours


Feedback methods


Individual written feedback on completed and marked assignments and presentations

Formative and Summative

In-class comments on homework and other exercises

Formative and Summative

Global feedback (delivered orally in class/posted to Blackboard/as a handout) on frequent errors or omissions will be provided to the whole class



Recommended reading

Materials will be linked from or posted on Blackboard as the course progresses.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 11
Seminars 22
Independent study hours
Independent study 167

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Ruben Manuel Oronich Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Learning and Teaching Processes

All students will be expected to attend all classes, to participate actively in class discussion and in pair and group activities, and to engage in regular independent language learning devoting an average of seven to ten hours per week to work on the various language skills. The independent language learning, undertaken by all students, will be monitored throughout the year.

There will be one individual meeting per semester with a language tutor to monitor the progress of the portfolio and get personalised feedback.


Language of Teaching and Assessment

Catalan and English


Extensive resources will be available via Blackboard. Blackboard will also be used for monitoring independent study


Additional e-learning content

Catalan Language online course,

Supplementary materials to aid students in their Independent Learning in preparing for classes and assessment as well as links to online resources



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