Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit


ITAN102 Elementary Italian A or equivalent


ITAN103 Elementary Italian B

Unit rationale, description and aim

Learning an additional language facilitates a rich engagement with the worlds of others. The positive intercultural values and the analytical, conceptual and communication skills developed by students who learn additional languages are highly valued by employers in business, education, government and industry. As students make progress in learning a language, they can participate more fully in language communities, initiating conversations and providing as well as seeking information and assistance.

This unit is designed for basic users of Italian progressing to more independent language use. It is linked to the ‘A2+’ level of the expanded Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). The unit focuses on developing students’ Italian language skills across the listening–speaking–reading–writing spectrum of competencies, with particular emphasis on spoken interaction. On completion of this unit, students should be able to describe past activities and events and tell a simple story. They will be able to ask and give opinions, ask and answer simple questions about familiar topics, give and follow simple directions and instructions (for example, organising travel, making plans, exchanging basic correspondence). The unit will continue to develop students’ knowledge of Italian-speaking cultures and the nature and challenges of intercultural communication.

The aim of this unit is to provide students with the ability to manage simple exchanges in Italian without undue effort and communicate clearly in everyday situations using predictable content.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Use and respond to Italian vocabulary and language structures appropriate to communication in personal and social contexts (GA4, GA5)

LO2 - Identify important cultural aspects reflected in Italian used in personal and social contexts (GA1, GA4, GA6)

LO3 - Communicate in Italian at the level of proficiency linked to selected ‘Can do’ statements at A2 level in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) (GA5)

Graduate attributes

GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account


Topics will include:

  • Historic periods
  • Holidays plans and arrangements
  • Food and recipes
  • Media and News
  • Family and Childhood
  • Parts of the body and illnesses
  • Music
  • Sports
  • Gestures
  • Travelling and living in Italian-speaking countries
  • Stereotypes, misconceptions and luoghi comuni (common sayings)

Content on intercultural difference and diversity will be integrated in selected topics.

Language Functions and Competencies:

  • Talking about and relating past actions and events
  • Making future plans and describing future actions
  • Making comparisons
  • Giving simple instructions
  • Giving opinions
  • Giving and asking for advice
  • Understanding a variety of simple instructions
  • Making complaints and giving feedback
  • Expressing needs, desires and preferences
  • Expressing obligations and duties
  • Using connective words to convey meaning
  • Describing childhood and stages of life

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

This unit is designed to be offered fully online and will include synchronous delivery of unit content, collaborative online learning activities and other technology-enabled learning synchronous and asynchronous learning opportunities to foster interaction between students.

The approach to language learning and teaching taken in this unit is the ‘communicative approach’ which focuses on developing students’ competence in ‘real life’ communication. This approach emphasises using language for meaningful purposes in authentic situations, and encourages students to practice and experiment with communicating through the use of activities that have real purpose and a real-life communicative context. In keeping with this approach, learning and teaching strategies have been chosen to bring real-life communicative contexts to the classroom (as seen in the topics chosen for this unit), and to facilitate the communicative interactions between students that will help them develop accuracy and fluency. For example, audio-visual language material based on everyday contexts will be used as key learning and teaching resource. Students are encouraged to be active participants and work individually, in pairs and in groups. Through this interaction, the key competencies of listening, speaking, reading and writing will be developed. Teaching and learning activities include weekly online exercises in the Learning Management System, interactive language practice, including in-class role-play in preparation for the first assessment task, and the completion of the staged assessment tasks.

This is a 10-credit point unit and has been designed to ensure that the time needed to complete the required volume of learning to the requisite standard is approximately 150 hours in total across the semester.

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks in this unit are chosen to develop different domains of language acquisition and are sequenced to support students in developing proficiency in reading, writing, speaking and listening to Italian. The tasks will also further develop students’ knowledge of Italian culture and their ability to explore and reflect on intercultural communication and difference.

Assessment task 1 is a role play that places the student in a nominated interactive communication context and assesses students’ active listening and speaking skills within that context. Assessment task 2 is a reading and writing task that develops and assesses students’ reading, writing, and comprehension skills. Assessment 3 is a written task that builds on the skills and knowledge developed through the unit, and will include assessment of language and cultural knowledge and skills.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1

Role play: requires students to demonstrate active listening and speaking skills in an interactive context.


LO1, LO2

GA1, GA4, GA5, GA6

Assessment Task 2

Reading and writing task: requires students to develop and demonstrate reading, writing and comprehension skills.


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA1, GA4, GA5, GA6

Assessment Task 3

Written task: requires students to demonstrate language and cultural knowledge and skills.


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA1, GA4, GA5, GA6

Representative texts and references

Balì, M., Rizzo, G., & Ziglio, L. (2018). New Italian espresso workbook: Intermediate and advanced: Italian course for English speakers. ALMA Edizioni.

Balì, M., Rizzo, G., & Ziglio, L. (2018). New Italian espresso textbook: intermediate and advanced: Italian course for English speakers . ALMA Edizioni.

Bulhosen, P., Logi, F., & Riu, L. (2010). Pocket Oxford Italian dictionary: Italian-English (4th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. DOI:10.1093/acref/9780191739569.001.0001

Bulhosen, P., Riu, L., & Logi, F. (2010). Pocket Oxford Italian dictionary: English-Italian (4th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. DOI:10.1093/acref/9780191739552.001.0001

Danesi, M. (2014). Practice makes perfect: Italian conversation, premium. (2nd ed.). McGraw-Hill.

Lovato, E. (n.d.). Il mistero di Casanova. ALMA Edizioni. (A1-A2) Alma Comics. 

Maiden, M., & Robustelli, C. (2013). A reference grammar of modern Italian (2nd ed.). London; New York: Routledge.

Mapelli, V. (2013). Spaghetti al veleno. Milan: Mondadori Education.

Marin, T., & Diadori, P. (2019). Via del Corso for English speakers. Student’s textbook and workbook. Edizioni Edilingua. (A1) Edilingua Comics

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