Placement in a specific level is determined by language proficiency. All students, except for complete beginners, take a language assessment prior to the start of the program. The language assessment is not part of the application process.
Explore our course catalog to see the courses offered in past years.
Level 1: Beginning Italian
This level is designed to introduce students to the grammatical structures and vocabulary necessary to express personal meaning on basic topics (e.g. family, daily routines, and leisure time) and negotiate basic survival situations (making travel arrangements, ordering meals, and making purchases, etc.). Language topics and functions are integrated into activities that emphasize all four language skills (speaking, listening, reading, and writing), with special attention given to speaking and listening. Cultural knowledge that will build a deeper understanding of Italy is a crucial component of the course content. This level meets four hours a day.
Level 1.5: Advanced Beginning Italian
Designed for students with some previous study of Italian or another Romance language, this level builds on and rapidly expands control of basic grammatical structures and vocabulary. Students consolidate their ability to negotiate basic survival situations in the target-language culture, and prepare themselves for continued study of the language. New language functions will be presented in meaningful activities that emphasize all four language skills: speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Cultural knowledge that will build a deeper understanding of Italy is a crucial component of the course content.
Level 2: Introduction to Contemporary Italy
Intended for students at the intermediate level, this level will afford the opportunity to expand conversation, writing, and reading skills while consolidating knowledge of the more difficult points of grammar. The contextual focus of the courses is modern Italian culture including history, politics, and literature among other things. Italian films, short stories and essays, will enhance and complete the learning experience.
Level 3: Advanced Italian
This level aims at strengthening and developing the intricate linguistic competence that students must possess in order to decipher and produce various verbal codes. Special emphasis will be given to oral and written expression through a systematic review of complex linguistic structures. The mastery of grammar will be acquired through an intensive practice of a variety of exercises. Readings and discussions of special topics will culminate in the writing of short pieces of descriptive narrative and argumentative prose.