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Intensive: Absolute Beginners, CEFR level A1

Mendrisio Campus

The free of charge Intensive absolute beginner Course is intended for students with no previous knowledge of the Italian language. The course encourage to get fully involved in the Language for two weeks. The morning class focus on grammar and writing whereas the afternoon class focus on improving listening and speaking skills, expanding vocabulary and developing confidence. By the end of the course students will be able to employ simple sentences and expressions when dealing with various situations in daily life.

Level: A1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

Where: Università della Svizzera italiana, Academy of Architecture, Mendrisio Campus, Via Alfonso Turconi 25, 6850 Mendrisio.

When: from Monday 3 until Friday 14 September (2018).

Schedule: 60 hours during two weeks, 6 hours a day from 09:00 until 15:30, from Monday until Friday.


  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
09:00 – 10:30 Class Class Class Class Class
10:30 – 11:00 Break Break Break Break Break
11:00 – 12:30 Class Class Class Class Class
12:30 – 14:00 Break Break Break Break Break
14:00 – 15:30 Class Class Class Class Class

Course objectives:

  • basic oral communication in everyday university life (first three units of the book);
  • get to learn the social and cultural environment of the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland;
  • the communication language will be English in the first part of the course and it will be changed gradually to Italian afterwards.

Course content, first three units of the book: numeri, articoli determinativi e indeterminativi singolari e plurali, plurale dei nomi, pronomi personali e riflessivi, ausiliari, verbi regolari e irregolari al presente, verbi riflessivi, concordanza degli aggettivi, aggettivi e pronomi possessivi, interrogativi, preposizioni.

Culture: culture is a major and inseparable component of knowing a language, therefore we also organize a guided visit of a museum and an Italian film viewing in the USI Auditorio, Lugano Campus.

Test: different assessment procedures are conducted during the course, including an end of term test. This is a one hour test, and includes a short listening comprehension and some grammar exercises. The test takes place the last Thursday of the course.

Handbook: The course material is not covered by the University and must be purchased by the student before the start of the course. Title: Marco Mezzadri, “Italiano Plus A1-A2”, Volume 1, Bonacci editore, 2015, ISBN 9788820108816

Certificate of attendance: a regular and active attendance is compulsory. All students who attend at least the 75% of the course and took the final exam will receive a certificate of attendance.

ECTS points: no ECTS points are given, except for SEMP (ex Erasmus), Swiss Mobility and International Exchange students who will be awarded 2 ECTS Credit Points after successful completion of the course.

Semestral course: students and professionals of the Accademia willing to continue studying Italian free of charge after the Intensive Preparative course can apply for the Beginners 1 extensive course (CEFR A1-A2 level) held throughout the Semester in the Mendrisio Campus.

Online application: http://www.italiancourse.usi.ch/architecture/arc-intensive-subscription/