Major Learning Goals

Students who complete a major in Italian reach a level of proficiency that corresponds to ACTFL guidelines for Advanced High in Speaking and Writing and Advanced High/Superior for Reading and Listening.

Students are expected to:

  • be able to communicate fluently with native speakers and use the Italian language in both everyday and formal situations to cover a wide variety of topics ranging from personal conversations to abstract discussions;
  • understand not only the main ideas but also deeper meanings expressed in a variety of textual genres in Italian, as well as the pragmatic elements that characterize communication in those genres;
  • acquire a solid grasp of sociolinguistic differences in Italy (e.g., the ability to clearly distinguish different registers, regional accents, and typical gestures);
  • choose the language register best appropriate in different genres and forms of interaction;
  • understand the role and evolution of form (in terms of language politics and ideology) in each individual Italian text;
  • understand the relationship between a) the individual text and the genre it belongs to and/or transgresses; b) the individual texts and its broader context;
  • incorporate literary and critical theories in written assignments;
  • explore connections and understand the Italian literary and cultural tradition from past to present;
  • show familiarity with different theoretical approaches to Italian literature and culture.