BA Politics and Italian

Year of entry: 2022

Course unit details:
Italian Language 6

Unit code ITAL51060
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Italian Studies
Available as a free choice unit? No


This course unit is aimed at students who have normally spent a substantial period of residence in Italy. Through an integrated programme of advanced language work involving composition, analysis of literary texts, translation, oral practice and the study of key grammatical elements and structures alongside the study of key literary figures and movements, the course is intended to consolidate and deepen understanding of the Italian language with a strong cultural focus on contemporary Italian life. By the end of the course, students are expected to achieve an advanced command and awareness of the Italian language, culture, and society.



  • to deepen and refine grammatical knowledge of Italian;
  • to develop the student’s capacity for self-expression in Italian;
    to provide an introduction to professional skills in translating from Italian into English;
  • to translate accurately into English passages of an appropriate level of difficulty, involving English usage of various kinds;
  • to develop an awareness and understanding of the styles of some contemporary Italian writers;
  • to develop an understanding of the major literary movements of the 20th and 21st centuries;
  • to express themselves fully and coherently in writing on substantial topics of current concern;
  • to use and understand a number of advanced aspects of the Italian language;
  • to prepare and deliver in Italian an oral presentation on such a topic;
  • to reflect on the activity of translating and apply in their own translation work the principles involved

Knowledge and understanding

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

  • perform at Level C1/C2 of the Common European Framework (CEFR)
  • demonstrate competence in the use of advanced aspects of Italian grammar
  • reflect on, and re-elaborate, complex texts in Italian
  • express coherent ideas and arguments in spoken and written Italian at an advanced level
  • use spoken Italian to discuss a variety of topics with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers possible without strain for either parties involved

Intellectual skills

This course develops abilities to:

  • Use advanced language creatively and precisely for a range of purposes and audiences
  • Contextualise information from a variety of perspectives, sources and registers
  • Extract and synthesise key information from written and spoken sources
  • Organise and present ideas within the framework of a structured and reasoned argument
  • Engage in critical and analytical thinking

Practical skills

These include:

  • Use and present material in the target language in written and oral forms in a clear and effective manner at an advanced level
  • Ability to manage own learning
  • Use target language source materials appropriately
  • Access electronic resources and use information and communication technologies (ICT) appropriately, including the Internet and  Blackboard

Transferable skills and personal qualities

These include:

  • Communication and presentation skills: oral, written and IT
  • The ability to work creatively and flexibly with others as part of a team
  • Mediating skills and qualities of empathy
  • Self-reliance and adaptability
  • Intercultural awareness
  • Autonomy and independence
  • Time management skills

Employability skills

Communication skills are developed through presentations and teamwork; self-management skills are promoted through independent work set to fortnightly deadlines, and IT skills through web and computer assisted language learning. Finally, creative skills are fostered through creative writing and a task-orientated approach.

Assessment methods

Composition in Italian 10%
Exam 1 20%
Oral examination 30%
Exam 2 40%


Feedback methods

Feedback method

Formative or Summative

Individual written feedback on completed and marked assignments plus face-to-face discussion if desired.


In-class comments on homework, presentations and other exercises.


After each of the scheduled assignments, global feedback on frequent errors or omissions to indicate problem areas and allow questions and discussion (delivered orally in class/posted to blackboard/as a handout).



Recommended reading

Hervey, S., I. Higgins, S. Craigie and G. Gambarotta, Thinking Italian Translation: A Course in Translation Method, Italian to English, 2nd edn (London: Routledge, 2015)

T. Oliver-Federici, Developing Writing Skills in Italian (Oxon: Routledge, 2009)

Lepschy, L., and G. Lepschy, The Italian Language Today (London: Routledge, 1994).

Maiden, M., and C. Robustelli, A Reference Grammar of Modern Italian (London: Arnold, 2007)

Nocchi, S., and R. Tartaglione, Grammatica avanzata della lingua italiana con esercizi (Florence: Alma, 2006)

Proudfoot, A., and F. Cardo, Modern Italian Grammar: a Practical Guide, 3rd edn (London: Routledge, 2012)

Renzi, L., and G. Salvi (eds), Grande grammatica italiana di consultazione (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1988)

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Seminars 66
Independent study hours
Independent study 134

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Salvatore Campisi Unit coordinator

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