Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2020-2021 (archived)


Department: Modern Languages and Cultures (Italian)


Type Open Level 1 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2020/21 Module Cap Location Durham


  • Grade A in Italian at A level or an equivalent qualification, subject to decision by the module’s language coordinator


  • At least one additional level 1 module in Italian Studies

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • Italian Language 1B (ITAL1102)


  • to consolidate and develop language skills acquired during A-Level
  • to enhance communication skills in written and oral Italian
  • to encourage independent learning and reading of Italian texts of various kinds


  • Reinforcement of grammar knowledge developed for A level
  • Speaking and listening practice in small groups
  • Listening and comprehension exercises with recorded material
  • Reading of excerpts from various media (newspapers, magazines and contemporary novels)
  • Analysis and discussion of the language of texts studied
  • Discussion and development of ideas introduced via texts studied

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • To consolidate their knowledge of key grammatical points
  • To deepen their appreciation of how Italian is used differently in different contexts (both oral and written)
  • To become more familiar with the main Italian newspapers, cultural magazines and some contemporary literature
Subject-specific Skills:
  • To speak and write with a high level of grammatical accuracy and idiomatic command
  • To read Italian of various registers in a wide range of media
  • To understand and respond to Italian spoken in a variety of (real and recorded) contexts
  • To communicate orally and in writing with confidence
  • To develop their language skills independently
Key Skills:
  • Presentation skills (students will be required to present their work to their teacher and fellow class-mates)
  • Communication skills (all classroom activities and coursework contain aspects of communication)
  • Critical skills (being able to read critically and discuss what has been read)
  • IT skills (all coursework is to be word-processed)

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Classes will contain grammar, reading, writing, oral and aural components. This joined-up teaching encourages students to apply their learning across subject skills
  • Classes will be conducted in Italian to enhance the development of oral and aural skills
  • Grammar will be taught by studying language in use in the first instance and reinforced through explanation (where necessary) and active use of new structures in the second. This is designed to simulate real-life contexts and to foster independence in language learning
  • Students are required to attend all classes
  • Students will be required to read before class and to prepare specific topics for discussion and presentation. They are also required to participate actively in class. These aspects of the course aim to encourage active language-learning while improving subject skills and key transferable skills.
  • Summative assessment of reading/writing skills and of grammatical knowledge will take the form of an end-of-year examination.
  • Oral skills will be summatively assessed by means of activities carried out in class during the year, including group work.
  • Formative assessment for this module will include a combination of self-assessed, peer-assessed and tutor-assessed exercises during the year.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Grammar, speaking and listening class 21 1 per week 1 hour 21
Reading and writing class 21 1 per week 1 hour 21
Student preparation and reading time 158
Total SLAT hours 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Written Examination Component Weighting: 75%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Written Examination 2 hours 100% Yes
Component: Oral Assessment Component Weighting: 25%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
In-class continuous assessment of oral skills 100% 10-minute oral examination

Formative Assessment:

Reading, written assignments, oral presentations

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University