Loyola University Chicago

John Felice Rome Center

ITAL 101: Italian I

Fall 2013

Office Hour:

Meeting Days and Times: Various (see Locus)

Meeting Place: Room

Online course: Sakai



course description


The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the Italian language. Emphasis will be placed on developing speaking, listening, reading and writing skills and grammar sufficient to support these. Through in-class activities and homework assignments, students can also expect to learn about modern Italy, including geography, culture, history, and society. Given the unique cultural context in which this course is placed, students will be particularly encouraged to begin speaking Italian outside the classroom as soon as possible.


learning outcomes


Class meetings will center on developing communicative ability, and will be supplemented with in-class activities as well as authentic reading, listening, and visual material.


Upon completion of Italian 101, students should attain a level of competency sufficient to:


  1. Utilize basic essentials of Italian grammar in speaking and writing with a high level of precision. Specifically, students should be able to:
  1. Provide and obtain information on a range of practical topics (e.g., preferences, needs, interests, descriptions) and in a variety of situations (e.g., transportation, greetings, introductions, obtaining and discussing food and lodging, carrying out simple transactions);
  2. Convey emotions and express feelings;
  3. Provide and obtain information on such topics as personal/family background, preferences, interests, and daily routine.
  1. Read, with basic understanding, general interest articles in newspapers and magazines, as well as simple stories, brochures, signs, advertisements, songs, and poems;
  2. Understand clearly articulated native Italian speech within the limits of familiar vocabulary;
  3. Be knowledgeable of Italian history, culture, geography, etc. within the scope of this course.


course requirements


In order to attain the learning outcomes outlined above and to ensure that the course proceeds efficiently, students are encouraged and expected to:


  1. Attend class. Not attending class will lower a student's grade for several reasons (e.g., lack of participation; missed clarifications, explanations, and analyses; missed vocabulary, etc.);
  2. Participate actively and constructively in class both with the instructor and other students;
  3. Take all quizzes and exams, and complete assignments on their scheduled dates and at their scheduled times (see dates in boldface type under class schedule). Make-up quizzes and exams will be provided only in accordance with Rome Center policy regarding excused absences (see absence policy);
  4. Complete homework assignments on their due date;
  5. Comport themselves in a manner conducive to learning and with respect for other students;
  6. Speak Italian as requested during class meetings.


general absence policy


Students requesting that an absence be excused due to illness must present the instructor with a written note from a physician (a written prescription for medications will not be considered sufficient justification for an absence). Please note that the Academic Advisor, the Associate Director of Students, or the Director of Residence Life can justify absences only in emergency situations. Personal reasons such as travel plans, visiting relatives, friends, etc., cannot be accepted as valid grounds for excusing an absence.


course-specific absence guidelines


For the purpose of grade calculation, each  unexcused absence that a student accumulates after the second will reduce her or his final grade by 3% (e.g., if a student's pre-absence grade calculation is 95%, with 4 absences the grade reduces 6 percentage points to 89%, resulting in a decrease in the final grade from A to B+).


It is the student's responsibility to inform herself or himself of homework assignments, class notes, etc. in the event of absence.


text – 1 copy is required for each student:


quiitalia.it. 2011. Mazzetti, Falcinelli, Servadio, Santeusanio. Mondadori Education: Milano. (available for purchase in JFRC bookstore)


means of assessment


The final grade will be determined on the basis of the following criteria, and grades will be assigned according to the following scale:

                                                           % of final grade          Grading Scale



                %            gr. pt.      meaning

A             100-93    4.00         excellent

A-            92-89      3.67        

B+           88-86      3.33

B             85-81      3.00         good

B-            80-78      2.67

C+           77-75      2.33

C             74.5-71   2.00         satisfactory

C-            70.5-68   1.67         min. for pass/fail option

D+           67.5-63   1.33

D             62.5-60   1.00         poor

D-            59.5-57

F             below 57 0.00         failure


*Class Participation (5% at midterm)      10%

*Oral Assignments (2)                           10%                

*Compositions (4)                                 12%

 *Homework/Projects                            7%

 Quizzes** (4)                                      16%                

 Midterm Exam                                    20%                

 Final Exam                                         25%                




*Detailed information concerning these assignments (expectations, deadlines, etc.) will be distributed during the semester.

** Quizzes are designed to assess students’ progress at regular intervals throughout the semester and are not cumulative. The midterm exam and final exam are cumulative.


final exam


DATE:                   |    TIME:                            |    PLACE:


Those students who cannot attend the final exam session will receive a grade of 0 (zero) on the final exam (except those students with a valid excuse; see absence policy), and the final grade will be calculated accordingly.


academic integrity


The deliberate appropriation and representation of another person's work (ideas, language, findings, etc.) as one's own on any written assignment, quiz, exam, or paper—commonly referred to as "plagiarism"—will result in a student's automatic failure for that assignment or examination and notification of the Director that the student is suspected to have committed plagiarism. Any such behavior undermines the fundamental trust upon which academic integrity and a community of scholars is based. Every student must familiarize herself or himself with the rules referring to academic integrity as outlined in the Loyola University Chicago Undergraduate Studies Catalogue. Knowledge of the University's academic integrity guidelines will be taken for granted.


Please remember that while study groups are acceptable, students should not use on-line instant translators to write compositions, ask friends or native speakers to complete their assignments and recycle their own or other people’s materials. Plagiarism or dishonest examination behavior will result minimally in the instructor assigning the grade of “F” for the assignment or examination. For a complete account of what constitutes academic dishonesty as well as the penalties, see the Undergraduate Catalogue.

In addition to the Loyola University Chicago policy on Academic Honesty (see Loyola website), the following rules apply in all modern language courses:

1. Students may not use automated translators to write compositions.

2. Students may not ask friends, relatives or native speakers to complete their assignments.

3. Students may not recycle their own or other people’s work.

4. Students must explicitly cite any material that has been taken from the Internet or other sources and in most cases are urged to paraphrase rather than copy and paste.




This course requires that each student activate and maintain access to the Sakai on-line learning tool. Through this medium such tasks can be accomplished as communicating homework assignments, submitting homework, and communicating important course-related information. In addition, specific files can be accessed through Sakai (e.g., course syllabus, quiz correction keys, language-learning files).




          The oral and/or homework components of the course will require each student to access the VoiceThread     online tool.


students with disabilities


Students with documented disabilities who wish to discuss academic accommodations should contact me the first week of class.



CLASS SCHEDULE (the following schedule is subject to modification)

Please note that given the language component of the general orientation, Italian language classes are exempt from make-up lessons.




Communicative Functions

Culture / Geography*

Grammar / Structure

Means of Assessment

SEP 2/3/5

per cominciare

asking about/for: spelling, meaning, personal info, something, repeating; descriptions

Italian cities

alphabet, articles, pronouns, c’è, ci sono



per cominciare/unità 1






unità 1

greetings, introductions, eliciting/providing personal info, phone numbers, email, personal interests

Italy (seas, mountains, rivers, regions, etc.)

present indicative, adjectives, agreement, non, mi piace

Quiz 1


unità 1/unità 2





30/OCT 1/3

unità 2

asking questions in order to find out info, describing family and friends, making comparisons

the Italian family

present indicative, possessive adjectives, demonstratives, agreement, comparative

Quiz 2

Oral 1

Comp. 2








unità 3

eliciting/providing info on the home, describing a home or apartment

typical Italian dwellings

agreement, c’è, ci sono, articles, verbs spelled with -care, -gare, prepositions



unità 3






unità 4

telling time, discussing schedules and appointments, speaking about personal habits

caffè culture, historic caffès

andare, stare, uscire in present indicative, reflexive verbs, prepositions, frequency adverbs


NOV 4/5/7

unità 4






unità 5

discussing free time, invitations, uncertainty, doubt, desires, necessities, what you know and don’t know, past events

Italian restaurants, wine

more irregular verbs in present indicative, prepositions, ci, quantity adverbs, frequency adverbs, introduction to passato prossimo

Quiz 3

Comp. 3








unità 6

asking about past events and recounting them, discussing biographies

biographies of famous Italians

passato prossimo continued (and with reflexive verbs), choice of auxiliary verb, adverbs of time, past time expressions

Quiz 4

DEC 2/3/5

unità 6




Oral 2

Comp. 4


NOTE: Dates in bold and underlined refer to quizzes and the midterm; the precise date of oral exams and compositions will be set by the instructor.

*Instructors will make reference to Rome and the Lazio region when possible and appropriate.