BA Italian and Japanese / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

Course description

Our BA Italian and Japanese joint honours course will see you delve into the language and culture of Italy and Japan.

You will develop your language skills in Italian and Japanese while exploring the history, politics, literature and visual culture of the relevant regions through a range of course units.

Language courses are taught by native speakers and you will have a further opportunity to converse with Italian and Japanese speakers during your year abroad , which will be split between Italy and Japan via a university exchange, work placement and/or teaching as an English language assistant.

Employers actively recruit our graduates for their excellent language and communications skills and in-depth intercultural understanding - each crucial in a range of sectors, from international business to relief work and development.

Special features

Residence abroad

You can  study and/or work  for up to a year in a country or countries relevant to your chosen language(s) to improve your communicative language skills in a native-speaker environment.

Palaver Festival

Palaver Festival , a collaboration with the neighbouring Contact Theatre, offers you the opportunity to explore links between language and performance across a range of genres including literature, theatre, dance and more.

Collaborations and partnerships

The University has links with language and cultural institutions across the city, including:

  • Instituto Cervantes - a centre for Spanish culture
  • HOME - international and contemporary art, theatre and film
  • Alliance Française - home of French language and culture.

Societies

The University is home to over 30 international and language-related  student societies  offering a breadth of cultural activities and experiences.

Teaching and learning

You'll learn through a mixture of formal lectures, seminars and tutorials, spending approximately 12 hours a week in formal study sessions.

For every hour of university study, you will be expected to complete a further 2-3 hours of independent study. You will also need to study during the holiday periods.

The individual study component could be spent reading, producing written work, revising for examinations or working in the University's Language Centre.

Applicants should be aware that learning Japanese is very intensive and that a great deal of time is required for this throughout the course (extending through the summer period between Years 1 and 2, particularly for beginners).

The first few weeks may be particularly intensive for those who have not encountered Japanese script, and we strongly advise all applicants to ensure that they have learned at least the hiragana script prior to Week 1 of teaching; guidance on materials to help with this can be obtained from language tutors.

Coursework and assessment

You will be assessed in various ways, including:

  • written and oral examinations;
  • presentations;
  • coursework (which may include library research, linguistic fieldwork and data collection, or web-based research);
  • in your final year, a dissertation based on a research topic of your choice.

Assessment methods vary from course unit to course unit - see individual course unit listings for more information.

Course content for year 1

You will study 60 credits from each discipline.

Italian

In Year 1 Italian language instruction is divided between 'ab initio' and post-A-level groups (with the majority of students being beginners).

'Ab initio' students have five contact hours per week with their nominated mother-tongue teacher as part of a course specifically designed to build confidence in comprehension, writing, speaking and listening skills.

Post-A-level students have 3 hours consolidating and building competency on specific language points.

The Italian culture units offer a range of courses from the filmic and literary to the historic and linguistic, all of which reflect academic staff research interests.

Year 1 is specifically designed to begin furnishing candidates with the tools to enable them to read cultural products with confidence, be they texts, pictures, buildings or linguistic constructions.

Japanese

The first and second-year language courses include an Independent Language Learning Programme for post-beginners, through which you build up a portfolio of independent work by making linguistic notes on, for example, Japanese videos, satellite TV, or newspapers. This enables you to develop not only your linguistic expertise, but also your skills in independent learning - a vital requirement in today's knowledge-based society.

The intensive language teaching programme puts a heavy emphasis on thoroughly covering core language structures to provide secure foundations for progression to higher levels in subsequent years.

Students take core courses (with an external option for single honours) introducing them to academic skills and providing essential knowledge of history and society.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Italian Cultural Studies ITAL10300 20 Mandatory
Reading Italy: Medieval to Modern ITAL10500 20 Mandatory
Italian Language 1 ITAL51011 20 Mandatory
Italian Language 2 ITAL51022 20 Mandatory
Italian Language 3 ITAL51030 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Japanese Studies JAPA10030 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 1 JAPA51011 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 2 JAPA51022 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 3 JAPA51031 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 4 JAPA51042 20 Mandatory

Course content for year 2

You may choose to study up to two-thirds from either discipline or maintain equal weighting.

Italian

In Years 2 and 4, the language component of the course includes three contact hours per week in addition to working on set assignments and undertaking private study.

Options are available that range from Italian medieval urban culture and the afterlife, to the politics of the Risorgimento, Gothic and Fantastic literature, Fascism, and the history of the Italian book.

Most culture units involve two contact hours per week that serve as points of departure and reference for subsequent self-study. The units are largely assessed by coursework.

Japanese

The language courses in year 2 continue to build competence and the Independent Language Learning Portfolio and learning partnerships are central to this process.

In addition students develop their studies of Japan via a choice of courses in areas such as Japanese history, religion, society and culture, and begin to prepare for residence abroad.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Italian Language 4 ITAL51040 20 Mandatory
Italian Language 5 ITAL51050 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 5 JAPA51051 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 6 JAPA51062 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 7 JAPA51071 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 8 JAPA51082 20 Mandatory
The Italian Economic Boom: Places and Spaces ITAL20452 20 Optional
Aesthetics and Politics of Italian Fascism ITAL20501 20 Optional
Gendering the Canon: Women, Authorship and Voice in the Italian Trecento ITAL20611 20 Optional
Modern and Contemporary Japan: Social Dynamics JAPA20122 20 Optional
Core Themes in Animation and Visual Culture of Postwar Japan JAPA20131 20 Optional
History of Religion in Japan JAPA20211 20 Optional
Science and Civilisation in East Asia JAPA23002 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 13 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Your third year of study is  spent abroad  under approved conditions.  Our partner Universities are:

Chuo University, Dokkyo University, Fukuoka Women's University, Hiroshima University, Hitotsubashi University, Hokkaido University, Kanagawa University, Kansai Gaidai University, Keio University, Kobe University, Kyoto University, Kwansei Gakuin University, Meiji University, Meiji Gakuin University, Nanzan University, Ochanomizu University, Oita University, Osaka University, Rikkyo University, Ritsumeikan University, Saitama University, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Waseda University, Yamagata University

Course content for year 4

You may choose to study up to two-thirds from either discipline or maintain equal weighting.

Italian

There is the opportunity to study Business Italian, undertake a research-orientated dissertation in Italian (often using the primary sources held in the Rylands Library, which has outstanding Italian holdings), and participate in the Italian department's mentoring and outreach work.

The language component of the course includes three contact hours per week in addition to working on set assignments and undertaking private study.

In Years 2 and 4, options are available that range from Italian medieval urban culture and the afterlife, to the politics of the Risorgimento, Gothic and Fantastic literature, Fascism, and the history of the Italian book.

Most culture units involve two contact hours per week that serve as points of departure and reference for subsequent self-study. The units are largely assessed by coursework.

Japanese

Students will select from various Japanese modules in religion, historical, cultural and social science areas.

The language teaching programme continues to develop skills such as reading and writing Japanese, and includes work on interpreting and on translation as practical skills.

Course units for year 4

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Italian Language 6 ITAL51060 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 7 JAPA51071 20 Mandatory
Japanese Language 9 JAPA51090 20 Mandatory
Dissertation in Italian Studies ITAL30000 40 Optional
Italian Visual and Literary Cultures from Surrealism to Neo-Realism ITAL30341 20 Optional
Beyond the Text: The Book and its Body ITAL30432 20 Optional
Topics in Romance Linguistics ITAL32001 20 Optional
Core Themes in Animation and Visual Culture of Postwar Japan JAPA20131 20 Optional
Advanced Readings in Japanese JAPA32000 20 Optional
Bodies, Sex and Gender in Japan JAPA33071 20 Optional

Scholarships and bursaries

Residence Abroad Support We offer dedicated financial support packages of up to £2,000 for residence abroad students, based on household income. You will be automatically assessed for this, based on your Student Finance finance assessment - you just need to make sure you apply for a financial assessment in the academic year in which your residence abroad will take place.

RWS Brode Scholarship You may be eligible for this scholarship if you fulfil the following conditions:

  • Your qualifications were achieved at a state-funded school in the UK
  • your total household income does not exceed £60K (as verified by the Student Loan Company)
  • You achieve high marks in your A-levels (or equivalent qualifications), usually AAB or above
  • You apply to (and remain on) either a single honours Language programme, or a dual-language programme

Awards will be made according to a sliding scale, benefitting those who have the achieved the highest marks, whilst being from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.  Again, you will be automatically assessed for this, after you have registered on your degree programme. You simply need to make sure you allow the University access to your records when applying for your Student Loan (we cannot otherwise assess your eligibility).

Facilities

The  University Language Centre  is home to language resources, including a new interpreting suite, purpose-built recording rooms and resources for over 70 languages.

The Centre also offers multilingual word processing, language learning software, off-air recording and AV duplication, multilingual terrestrial and satellite TV, and extensive support and advice for learners.

Learn more on the  Facilities  page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk