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Lingua Insegnamento

Informazioni aggiuntive

Course Curriculum CFU Length(h)


The course aims at providing students with the linguistic and the metalinguistic knowledge and competences of English language and culture.
More specifically,

The students will have to achieve a good B2 level of English in all four abilities (listening, reading, writing & speaking), according to the CEFR: proficient users “Can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in his/her field of specialisation. Can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party. Can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.”

From the metalinguistic viewpoint, the students will acquire good skills on Functional Linguistics, and in particular Systemic Functional Grammar, to analyse language functions and interpret diverse text types and genres.


The students will be able to understand and describe the metalinguistic features studied during the course and apply them to textual analysis.
More specifically, within the B2 level of English, according to the CEFR, they will be able to analyse a text in English, identify metatextual functions, micro- and macro-functions, text types, context, register, stylistic features, coherence and cohesive devices.

The students will distinguish, among the theories studied, the most appropriate ones to analyse texts, evaluate contexts and choose the most effective communicative strategies.

The students will:
- understand texts and conversations in English;
- effectively and efficiently convey information and ideas (at the B2 level);
- discuss and present the metalinguistic issues studied in English.

The students will acquire those tools which will enable them to autonomously study and increase their linguistic and metalinguistic skills in the English language and culture.


English Language 1 / B1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Independent Users “Can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. Can deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken. Can produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest. Can describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.”


PRACTICAL PART 91 hours taught by a mother-tongue English instructor.
The students will attend 91-hour classes of General English (the schedule will be available on the website). The objective will be to reach the B2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages for all abilities: listening, reading, writing and speaking. A syllabus will be available online.
THEORETICAL PART 20 hours taught by the professor.
The students will attend the lectures which focus on Functional Linguistics and, in particular, Functional Grammar. The following topics will be discussed: an Introduction to Systemic Functional Linguistics, Language Use, Discourse Analysis: Language and Context, Hallidays Field, Tenor and Mode, Genre and Register, Dialogue, Phonology and grammar, Text and grammar, Semantics (Speech Function, Theme and Rheme, Cohesion and Coherence).

Teaching Methods

The PRACTICAL PART includes practical lessons taught by a mother-tongue English instructor, from October to May with no interruption. In January and February 2020 students will attend these classes once or twice a week to keep practicing. Mid-term assessments will be organised.
The THEORETICAL PART includes lessons taught by the professor and seminars. Mid-term assessments will be organised.

Verification of learning

The final exam will include both a WRITTEN EXAM and an ORAL EXAM, aiming at assessing, alternatively, the students’ acquisition of the English Language at the B1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, and Functional Linguistics.
The written exam, divided into 3 parts, will evaluate the linguistic competences foreseen in the B2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. It will include: a Listening Comprehension test and a Multiple Choice test, both in the lab, and a Reading Comprehension test, in one of the rooms.
The aim of the written exam is to assess the students’ skills to understand the language spoken by native speakers from the UK, the USA and Australia, but also by non-native speakers, who speak English as a Lingua Franca. Issues and content will be both of general and specialised English, with a special reference to the international university world. Grammar and lexis will be evaluated as well. The third part of the written test will assess the students’ skills in understanding different text types and topics, sentence transformation and word-formation.
The students will be allowed to skip the written test if they hold recently obtained international certifications (TOEFL, IELTS, Cambridge, etc.). Minimum level: B2. Please visit the professor’s personal webpage webpage
If the students hold a University Language Centre certification, they will have to contact the professor.
The oral exam will require the students to discuss in English the issues on Functional Linguistics dealt with during the 20-hour lectures. The students will have to show that they have acquired the right terminology and concepts, and that they can apply them to practical cases. To this aim, the students will have to choose and prepare the linguistic analysis of a short text or advertisement, they will discuss during the oral exam. They will need two copies of the text during the oral exam.
For those students who will regularly attend the lectures, the final mark will be made up of mid-term assessments as well, and of the practical work carried out in class, which will be evaluated.
Each part of the written exam has a final score then converted in a mark out of 30. The final mark will be based on the average of the marks of the three parts of the written exams, and will add a maximum of 4 points for the oral exams.
Those students who take and pass the mid-term multiple choice exam (at the end of February), will be exempted from taking this part during the exam. Its mark will be included in the written exam average.


Widdowson, H.G. 2007 Discourse Analysis. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ulrich, M. 1992. Translating Texts. From Theory to Practice. Rapallo: CIDEB Editrice. (ONLY THE THEORY REGARDING TEXTUAL FUNCTIONS, NOT TRANSLATION)
Optional readings
1. Halliday, M.A.K. 1978. Language as social semiotic. The social interpretation of language and meaning. London: Edward Arnold. Estratti
2. Halliday, M.A.K., Hasan, R. 1985. Language Context and Text: Aspects of Language in a Social-semiotic Perspective. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Estratti
3. Halliday, M.A.K., Matthiessen, C. M.I.M. 2013. An Introduction to Functional Grammar, Third Edition. Oxon, New York: Routledge. Estratti
4. Christiansen, T. 2011. Cohesion: a Discourse Perspective. Bern: Peter Lang. Estratti
5. McCarthy, M. 1991. Discourse Analysis for Language Teachers. Cambridge: Cambridge Language Teaching Library, CUP. Estratti


English File Digital Upper-Intermediate Third Edition (Oxford University Press)

More Information

The students will be required to download material from prof. Denti’s personal webpage, before the lectures. Please, check the website for updates and further information.
Attending lectures and classes is not compulsory but is highly recommended. Moreover, only those students who will regularly attend the lectures, will be entitled to take the mid-term assessments. Lectures and classes will take place both in rooms and labs. Lab classes will be an integral part of the course, both in terms of attendance and preparation.

Questionnaire and social

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