FLI2130 - Italian Beginners Fast-Track

2020/1 Module description

StaffMs Rossella Bongi - Convenor
Credit Value30
ECTS Value15
NQF Level5
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks; Term 2: 11 weeks;

Module description

Italian Beginners Fast-Track covers the equivalent of Italian Beginners and Italian Intermediate 1 in one year. It is intended for students who have a successful track record of learning another modern foreign language (e.g. GCSE A*-B grade or equivalent) and may also be suitable for re-starters wanting to review the basics of Italian. You will need to understand basic terminology for grammatical structures. Italian Beginners Fast-Track is also strongly recommended for incoming Erasmus students or those with a mother-tongue in a related Romance language (e.g. Spanish or French).

Italian beginners Fast-Track can be taken towards achieving ‘with proficiency in Italian”. See:  http://humanities.exeter.ac.uk/flc/undergraduate/proficiency/

Module aims

The module is intended for students who have little or no previous knowledge of Italian and offers an introduction to Italian language and culture. This module is broadly equivalent to A1/A2 Basic User and B1 Independent User level of the Common European Framework and aims to:

  • Provide youwith a solid foundation of the basic grammatical structures of the target language thus equipping you with the linguistic tools to enable them to communicate effectively in everyday situations across the four key language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing).
  • Enable participants to give and understand information and to achieve a confident elementary level of communicative competence in everyday situations.
  • Provide an introduction to the customs, culture and society of the regions/countries in which the languages are spoken and to develop student awareness of the general social and cultural background of the language.
  • If you successfully complete this module, you would progress directly to Italian Intermediate 2 (FLI2315/2330).

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Demonstrate competence in the use of basic grammatical structures of the target language
  • 2. Read and comprehend straightforward written and aural texts on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, study, leisure etc. in Italian
  • 3. Communicate effectively on a broad range of general topics which are familiar or of personal interest, both orally and in writing, and produce short descriptive and narrative texts, formal and informal letters

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 4. Understand the principles of learning a foreign language intensively and organise his/her learning with guidance from the tutor
  • 5. Use available learning aids in a variety of media, such as a reference grammar and bilingual dictionary, to consolidate his/her learning

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 6. Make a presentation on a topic pertinent to everyday occurrences in his/her field and hold a conversation in the target language which may involve expressing opinions and making value judgements
  • 7. Make progress through developing skills of self-study and application and develop an awareness of and sensitivity to a foreign culture

Syllabus plan

The course provides a systematic approach to acquiring essential grammar structures in a communicative context and in accordance with the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. It covers the following grammar / topics:


  • Nouns (masculine & feminine)
  • Formal/informal registers
  • to be/to have
  • Nouns (singular & plural) /definite/indefinite articles/adjectives
  • Present indicative regular verbs/negative form/piacere
  • Adverbs of time
  • Present indicative irregular and reflexive verbs
  • Possessive adjectives/agreement with noun
  • Prepositions/prepositions + det. Article
  • C'é/ci sono
  • irregular verbs
  • Preposition of place
  • Ci vuole/ci vogliono/modal verbs
  • Partitive/impersonal/more preposition + det. Article
  • Voglio vs vorrei
  • Stare+gerund
  • Passato prossimo with avere of regular verbs
  • Practice passato prossimo
  • Passato prossimo with essere/reflexives/piacere
  • Comparatives/è bene/è meglio
  • Future tense
  • Revision of present indicative of regular
  • irregular and reflexive verbs
  • Revision of passato prossimo
  • Imperfect indicative
  • Imperfect vs perfect/direct/indirect pronouns
  • Comparatives/superlatives
  • Imperative/definite pronouns
  • Present conditional of regular verbs
  • Present conditional of irregular verbs/modals
  • Structures requiring the infinitive
  • Verbs such as andarsene/provarci
  • Present subjunctive
  • Expressions requiring subjunctive/when not to use it.

Main Topics:

  • Alphabet/pronunciation/spelling
  • Greetings/introducing oneself/giving and asking for personal information
  • Time/parts of the day and meals/days of the week/months of the year
  • Ordering drinks and snacks
  • Talking about work
  • Telling and asking the time
  • Daily routine
  • Talking about family/describing people
  • Talking about home
  • Booking into a hotel
  • Finding a place/asking and giving directions
  • Means of transport
  • Shopping for food & clothes
  • Ordering in a restaurant
  • Talking about events in the past
  • Talking about health problems
  • Talking about holidays/future plans/weather
  • Exchanging information about daily activities
  • Cinema/the press/TV
  • The body/fitness and health
  • Buying a house
  • The environment
  • Free time/entertaining activities
  • The arts
  • Italian society
  • Work
  • Multicultural society.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching88Scheduled learning and teaching activities
Guided independent study212Consolidate class work by learning vocabulary and structures, and by reading, watching or listening to material in Italian. Prepare exercises and activities for class, write short assignments and generally begin to acquire a repertoire of effective language learning strategies. Learning activities are supported by various media, including audio, video/DVD, and where appropriate, computer software

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
4 formative tasks covering some or all of the following areas: grammar, writing, listening, reading, speaking.Variable 1-5, 7Written and oral

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Portfolio50Variable1-5, 7Written and oral
Oral Test258-9 minutes1, 3-7Written and oral
Written Exam25Take-home exam 1-5, 7Written and oral

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
PortfolioPortfolio1-5, 7Referral/Deferral period
Oral testOral test1, 3-7Referral/Deferral period
Written examWritten exam1-5, 7Referral/Deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.

You will only be required to retake any failed assessments. Marks for any passed assessments will be carried forward. If you have failed any assessments but managed to pass the module overall, you will not be allowed to retake the failed assessments.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Main course book:

  • Carole Shepherd & Derek Aust, Amici, Students' Book, OUP Oxford (10 Jun 2004).


  • Mezzadri, Essential Italian Grammar in Practice - Book (English edition), August 2001.

Recommended materials:

  • A suitable bilingual dictionary, e.g. Collins Italian Dictionary.

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Available as distance learning?


Origin date

February 2012

Last revision date


Key words search

Italian Beginners Fast Track

Important please note

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the module descriptors for the Online Module Selection process, please be aware that on rare occasions it may be necessary to remove proposed modules for reasons beyond our control. In addition, there are still some new modules going through the accreditation process. These will be offered in due course by the relevant discipline.

All modules displayed below have been approved by the approval process but may require further minor amendments before the commencement of teaching.

We are committed to providing an outstanding education and high quality teaching. You can find out details of your modules and any potential changes on these pages. If you are a returning student, joining after the first year or a postgraduate student details of your module changes will be provided in August. Find out more about the overall teaching and learning approach on your course, and please be aware that this information may supersede the specified teaching and learning activities within individual modules.

Foreign Language Centre modules 2020/21

Term 1 module codes listed above ending with C, i.e. FLF1115C, are only available to outbound students who are away in Term 2. Students studying all year must select the standard module across both Term 1 and 2.