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COURSE NAME: "Advanced Grammar and Conversation"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2018

INSTRUCTOR: Federica Capoferri
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: TTH 10:00-11:15 AM
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: Placement or IT 202 or permission of the instructor

This course is designed to help students gain fluency and confidence in speaking while reviewing the advanced structures of Italian grammar. Contemporary literary and journalistic texts offer an introduction to Italian culture and provide the basis for class discussions geared toward expanding vocabulary and reinforcing the idiomatic use of the language.
Contemporary texts (including at least one film) will provide the basis for class discussions geared toward expanding vocabulary and reviewing grammar. Topics of discussion will reflect various aspects of modern Italy as well as current events. Students will be asked to express themselves in a variety of ways including writing compositions, summarizing articles, and doing oral presentations.

Upon successfully completing this course, students should be able to:

  • Discuss a variety of topics using complex grammatical structures, correct syntax, and appropriate vocabulary;
  • Comprehend the general meaning of advanced-level texts;
  • Produce written texts of varying length, using complex grammatical structures, correct syntax, and sophisticated vocabulary;
  • Recognize various styles and registers and distinguish between spoken and written usage.
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Scontro di civiltà per un ascensore a Piazza VittorioA. LakhousE/O9788876418099  
Caleidoscopio italiano. Livello B1-C1Silvia Bertoni, Barbara Cauzzo, Gabriella DebettoLoescher9788820136765  
Grammar.it for English SpeakersCopertina opera Gabriella Iacovoni, Nadia Persiani, Barbara FiorentinoLoescher9788875734305  

Class participation and homeworkStudents are required to actively participate to class conversations and activities. PLEASE NOTE THAT I-PHONE AND COMPUTERS ARE NOT ALLOWED IN CLASS. STUDENTS WHO WILL DISREGARD THIS RULE WILL BE ASKED TO LEAVE THE CLASSROOM. Students are required to turn their homework each class (at the beginning). Any late submission will result in 2 pts taken off from this portion of your grade.20%
In-class Compositions (2) 10%
Group Oral presentationGroups of 2-3 students will be asked to give an introduction on the given topic and to lead the class discussion. The materials discussed will be part of the Midterm and Final Exams.5%
Midterm examIn-class exam composed of :1) grammar (exercises on the language structures reviewed in class) 2 cultural questions on materials covered in class 3) short composition20%
Final examIn-class CUMULATIVE exam composed of :1) grammar (exercises on the language structures reviewed in class) 2 cultural questions on materials covered in class 3) short composition25%
Individual Oral Presentation10 minutes presentations on a topic previoulsy discussed with the Instructor5%
Quizzes (2) 15%

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course.
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

Students are expected to come prepared to class and participate in all activities. Active participation is crucial, since the learning process requires considerable practice. Regular attendance is an essential component of class participation. Students are allowed three unjustified absences. Additional absences will lower the class participation grade considerably.

Make sure your travel plans do not interfere with the class schedule. 

If you should miss a class, please contact another student to find out what was covered that day so that you will be prepared for the next class. 


- leave the room as it is distracting to the professor and to your classmates;
- answer your cell phone, read or send text messages; 
- use your computer for anything not related to the class (e.g. Facebook)
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.


Please check MyJCU daily for homework assignments and handouts. Instructor can make changes to the schedule.

Week 1 
Introduction to the Course.
In-class writing activity: "About Me".
Grammar Review: Adjectives

Week 2 
Grammar Review: Pronouns.
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 1 "Quale italiano?" and exercises from Attiva il lessico

Week 3 
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 3 "Gente d'Italia" and exercises from Attiva il lessico-
Grammar Review: Pronouns

Week 4 
Composition 1.
Grammar Review: Verbs
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 3 "Gente d'Italia"

Week 5
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 4 "I gusti e le abitudini"
Grammar Review: Verbs
Quiz 1

Week 6 
Caleidoscopio italiano: Cap. 5: "Migrazioni interne ed esterne"
Grammar Review: Verbs
Begin reading Scontro di civiltà per un ascensore a Piazza Vittorio (Clash of Civilization Over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio).

Week 7 
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 5. Discussion on Scontro.....
Grammar: Verbs
Midterm Review  

Week 8 .
Midterm Exam
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap. 5: "Migrazioni interne ed esterne"
Grammar Review: Verbs
Discussion on Scontro.di civiltà

Week 9
Screening an Italian movie (TBA)
Discussion of the movie.

Week 10 
Caleidoscopio Italiano. Cap. 5Discussion on Scontro.di civiltà. 
Grammar Review: Subordinate Clauses
Individual Oral Presentations.

Week 11 
Caleidoscopio italiano. Cap 2: "Paesaggi, città e paesi"
Grammar Review: Subordinate Clauses
Individual Oral Presentations

Week 12 
Quiz 2

Group Presentations

Week 13
In-class composition 2

Class Discussion: Italy and Europe

Week 14 
Final Review