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Living Perugia - Elementary Language, Culture, and Reflection

Course Description

Living Perugia is an interdisciplinary course that focuses on achieving a basic level in cultural and linguistic-communicative competences (speaking, writing, reading and comprehension) regarding familiar contexts, everyday life activities and simple interaction with native speakers. At the same time, it introduces students to various, relevant aspects of contemporary Perugian life and Italian culture, asking them to reflect on their own experience of immersion in a different cultural environment.  This course has three pillars: language, culture, and reflection. Basic Italian language instruction is at the core of the class. Students will learn fundamentals of the Italian language in order to interact with Italians in various real-world settings. Second, they will use their language learning as a vehicle for delving into the richness and complexity of Italian culture. Third, students reflect on their experiences living in a new culture and understanding how this has impacted their perspective on the United States and their sense of their own identities. Through engaging in interactive assignments, maintaining a reflective course journal, and participating in group activities, students will learn to live in their new environment, build competence and confidence as global citizens, and understand how they can leverage their Perugia experience for their future personal and professional success.

Students will acquire basic skills in speaking and understanding Italian, study Italian culture and experience it first-hand, and reflect on what they have learned both about Italy, the United States, and themselves through their study abroad experience. This course is the equivalent of a standard first semester college level Italian course in the United States.

Course Objectives

At the end of the semester, you should reach the level A2 of the Common European Framework in the four basic competencies: listening, speaking and interacting, reading, and writing. In practice, you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate foundational skills in speaking and understanding Italian, including:
    1. recognizing and using words and expressions of daily and common use;
    2. participating in conversations at a basic level in everyday situations (talking about oneself, asking information, giving and receiving instructions, shopping, reading notices, etc.);
    3. understanding short texts (menus, signs, announcements, timetables, notices, recipes, short newspaper articles, etc.);
    4. composing short passages about their daily lives and direct experiences.
  • Participate in discussions of contemporary Italian culture.
  • Engage in critical evaluation of their own culture, Italian culture, and other foreign cultures, including:
    1. articulating U.S. cultural rules, norms and biases;
    2. understanding how their own experiences have shaped their values and priorities;
    3. knowing how to respond productively to cultural differences;
    4. valuing what is important to members of another culture, including their history, politics, communication styles, economy, beliefs and social practices;
    5. interpreting cross-cultural experiences from multiple worldviews and respecting the rights and feelings of other cultural groups;
    6. asking complex questions about their own culture and other cultures, seeking out answers to those questions that reflect multiple cultural perspectives.
  • Understand and articulate the unique benefits of their study abroad experience and anticipate how to leverage those benefits for their future personal and professional success.

Course Materials
All students in ITAL 101 will be provided with a personal copy of the Umbra Italian 101 textbook: Allora. Corso di italiano per stranieri.

Course Fee
$95.00 – Includes Tandem nights, cooking class, minimetro tickets and textbook.