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BA Italian and Spanish / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course description

Our BA Italian and Spanish joint honours course will see you delve into the language and culture of two countries.

You will develop your language skills in Italian and Spanish while exploring the history, politics, literature and visual culture of the relevant regions through a range of course units. Linguistic pathways are available for those interested in the history of a particular language and its dialects.

Language courses are taught by native speakers and you will have a further opportunity to converse with Italian and Spanish speakers during your year abroad , which will be split between Italian and Spanish-speaking countries 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.

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 Francaise - 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.

Language learning

In Year 1, 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. 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.

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. As our above awards indicate, we excel in using different forms of e-learning to enhance language acquisition, including podcasting. 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.
  • 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.

Spanish

  • In the first year of your course, you are trained in the modern spoken and written Spanish language through compulsory core courses and you will learn about key developments in the history and culture of Spain and Latin America.

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
Cultures of the Hispanic World SPLA10410 20 Mandatory
Themes in Spanish and Latin American Studies SPLA10420 20 Mandatory
Spanish Language 1 SPLA51011 20 Mandatory
Spanish Language 2 SPLA51022 20 Mandatory
Spanish Language 3 SPLA51030 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 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.

Spanish

  • You follow a compulsory Spanish language course unit, refining your skills in written and spoken Spanish.

  • You take options in the cultures and histories of the Spanish-speaking world, with choices including Hispanic cinemas and the history of revolutions in Latin America.

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
Spanish Language 4 SPLA51040 20 Mandatory
Spanish Language 5 SPLA51050 20 Mandatory
Aesthetics and Politics of Italian Fascism ITAL20501 20 Optional
Renaissance Florence: Culture, History and Art ITAL20622 20 Optional
History and Culture in Modern Spain SPLA20332 20 Optional
History of Latin America SPLA20362 20 Optional
Spanish Linguistics SPLA20772 20 Optional
Hispanic Cinemas SPLA20841 20 Optional
Cultures of Revolution in Latin America SPLA20861 20 Optional
Catalan Language & Culture 1 SPLA53010 20 Optional
Catalan Language & Culture 2 SPLA53020 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.

Course content for year 4

You may choose to divide your studies equally between both languages or study up to two thirds from either language.

Italian

  • In your final year you return to Manchester to complete your studies. There is the opportunity to undertake a research-orientated dissertation in Italian (often using the primary sources held in the Rylands Library, which has outstanding Italian holdings) and to participate in the Italian department's mentoring and outreach work.

Spanish

  • Continue your studies of the Spanish language and perfect your writing and oral skills.
  • Choose from a wide range of units in film, literature, music, history and linguistics of the Spanish-speaking world.

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
Spanish Language 6 SPLA51060 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Interpreting: Context, Skills and Modes ELAN30242 20 Optional
Dissertation in Italian Studies ITAL30000 40 Optional
Political and Cultural History of Italy ITAL30342 20 Optional
Introduction to the History of the Book ITAL30431 20 Optional
Topics in Romance Linguistics ITAL32002 20 Optional
Dissertation in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies SPLA30000 40 Optional
Social Issues in Portuguese and Spanish Film SPLA30642 20 Optional
The Politics of Business in Latin America SPLA31091 20 Optional
Plural Cultures of Latin America and the Caribbean SPLA31121 20 Optional
The Supernatural in Latin American Literature and Film SPLA31132 20 Optional
Language, Art and Empire in the Early Modern Hispanic World SPLA31162 20 Optional
Catalan Language & Culture 1 SPLA53010 20 Optional
Catalan Language & Culture 2 SPLA53020 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 15 course units for year 4

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