Italian

There are over 60 million Italian speakers around the world today and La Dolce Lingua continues to be one the most popular languages to learn. Whether you want to drink up regional culture (and vino) around Italy’s various regions, or enjoy Sydney’s inner-west Italian festivals, Italian is one of the most artistic and conversational languages to learn today.

Channels of Venice at night
  • 10 Weeks

  • All levels

  • AUD $395

  • Apply now

Feel at home anywhere with languages

We invite you to spend a few hours every week in Italy with us, to learn the language of Leonardo da Vinci, Monica Belucci, Giorgio Armani and Andrea Bocelli.

UNSW Global courses are designed to create opportunities for real-life communication practice and connect you with other people who share your interests.

Did you know?

  • Italy is home to over 60% of the world’s art treasures (according to UNESCO), so studying Italian is a key to research in the fields of art history, archaeology, philosophy and literature.
  • Modern Italian was purposefully designed by collecting the most beautiful sounding words across all the regional dialects, which is why it’s so very pleasant to hear!

Why study Italian with us?

Our small class sizes allow for high levels of interaction between students and the teacher. This course will help you:

  • Learn to speak, read and write in Italian

  • Get an insight into Italian culture

  • Communicate confidently when travelling to Italian speaking countries

  • Understand and communicate better with Italian speaking friends or family

  • Improve your current or future employment opportunities

Levels and duration

There are six levels. Each level consists of either 20 weeks of study or 2 x 10-week terms.

Beginners (Level 1)

Who is this for?

This course (10 weeks) is for those with very little or no previous knowledge of the language.

Module A

What topics does it cover?

  • Greetings and introductions
  • Ordering in a cafe and restaurant
  • Introduction to Italian phonetics
  • Alphabet and numbers (0-100)
  • Addressing people (formally and informally)
  • Professions and workplaces

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Gender (maschile and femminile)
  • Definite and indefinite articles (il, lo, la, l’, i gli, le - un, un’, una, uno)
  • Pronouns (io, tu, Lei, lui, lei)
  • Simple questions using intonation Come, Di dove, etc.
  • Basic verbs : chiamarsi, essere, avere,abitare, lavorare, prendere, portare, fare
  • Adjectives of nationality and gender agreement
  • Nouns and peculiarities of nouns
  • Demonstrative adjectives: questo/quello
  • Simple prepositions

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 1-3)

What’s the end goal?

By the end of the course, students will have a basic understanding of the Italian language.


Module B

Who is this for?

This course (10 weeks) is for those with some basic knowledge of the language.

What topics does it cover?

  • Free time
  • Routines
  • Days of the week
  • Time and timetables
  • Describing a place
  • Going around town

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Regular verbs (presente indicativo)
  • Some irregular verbs: fare,andare, stare, sapere, conoscere
  • Adverbs of frequency
  • The verb piacere
  • Asking questions
  • Adjectives (first and second group)
  • Simple prepositions
  • C’è/ ci sono - more irregular verbs (presente indicativo)
  • More irregular verbs (presente indicativo)

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 4-5)

What’s the end goal?

By the end of the course, students will be able to communicate in a simple way with an increasing range of vocabulary and language functions.

Elementary (Level 2)

Who is this course for?

This course (10 weeks) is for those who may have studied the language some years ago and are familiar with its basics.

Module A

What topics does it cover?

  • Booking a hotel room
  • Holidays in Italy
  • Months
  • Ordinal numbers
  • The weather
  • Describing a house
  • Timetables
  • Planning a trip
  • At the travel agency

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Modal verbs
  • Compound prepositions
  • Past tense: il passato prossimo (regular verbs with essere and avere)
  • Irregular past participles
  • Past time expressions
  • Adverbs of time (già, appena, non ancora)
  • Ci vuole/Ci vogliono

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 6-7)

What’s the end goal?

By the end of the course, students will have awareness of grammatical structures and be able to use and understand them in simplified contexts.


Module B

Who is this course for?

This course (10 weeks) is for those who may have studied the language some years ago and are familiar with its basics.

What topics does it cover?

  • Professions and working hours in Italy
  • Daily routines
  • Habits
  • Holidays and traditions
  • Family
  • Food and eating habits in Italy
  • Grocery shopping

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Reflexive verbs (presente indicativo)
  • Position of the reflexive pronoun
  • Possessive adjectives (with words denoting family members)
  • Passato prossimo of reflexive verbs
  • Direct object pronouns
  • Ne as partitive expression
  • Partitive use of ‘di’ and article

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 8-10)

What’s the end goal?

By the end of the course, students will be able to communicate in and understand the language on practical everyday matters.

Lower Intermediate (Level 3)

Who is this for?

This level (20 weeks) is for those who have a good basic knowledge of the language.

Lower Intermediate 3A and 3B are 10 weeks each and may be taken in any order.

Module A

What topics does it cover?

  • Shopping for clothes and shoes
  • Pets and animals
  • The past
  • Habitual activities in the past
  • Past holidays
  • Childhood

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Indirect object pronouns
  • Use of indirect pronouns contrasted with direct pronouns
  • Condizionale presente to make polite requests
  • Più, meno, troppo
  • Adjective quello
  • Imperfetto past tense
  • Use of the imperfetto compared to the passato prossimo

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 11-12)


Module B

What topics does it cover?

  • Body characteristics
  • Personality characteristics
  • The horoscope
  • My house
  • Wishes
  • Comparisons
  • Invitations
  • Social arrangements
  • At the ticket office
  • Public behaviour in Italy

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Passato Prossimo of cominciare and finire
  • Comparatives and superlatives
  • Present conditional to express wishes
  • Present progressive of the verb stare
  • Agreement of the past participle with the direct pronouns
  • Direct, indirect and reflexive pronouns with modal verbs

What textbook do I need?

New Italian Espresso 1 (Alma Edizioni Firenze, 2014) (Units 13-14)

What’s the end goal?

By the end of this level, students will develop a deeper cultural awareness and be able to converse reasonably fluently with native speakers and discuss personal, social and current issues using appropriate structures.

Intermediate (Level 4)

Who is this for?

This level (20 weeks) is for those who have a good command of the language and its main grammatical structures.

Intermediate 4A and 4B are 10 weeks each and may be taken in any order.

Module A

What topics are covered?

  • Meeting people
  • Talking about future projects
  • Talking about Italian music
  • Talking about eating habits, healthy lifestyle and giving advice

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Revision of passato prossimo and imperfetto
  • Passato prossimo of modal verbs
  • Different uses of passato prossimo and imperfetto
  • Direct, indirect and reflexive pronouns revision
  • Simple future, preposition “fra” in the future
  • Hypothetical clause verbs bastare and servire
  • Imperative informal singular
  • Direct and indirect pronouns
  • Imperative with regular and some irregular verbs
  • Position of object pronouns

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.


Module B

What topics does it cover?

  • Part of the body
  • Homeopathy vs. traditional medicine
  • Wellness and wellbeing
  • Sport and healthy lifestyle
  • Italian universities and education system
  • Erasmus project
  • Learning foreign languages
  • Italian cities and suburbs
  • How to read a novel

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Imperativo formale/informale and combined pronouns
  • Imperative singular and plural
  • Comparative and superlative irregular
  • Past perfect
  • When to use passato prossimo, imperfetto and past perfect
  • Relative pronouns
  • Past conditional
  • Passato remoto

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.

What’s the end goal?

By the end of this level, students will be able to converse with native speakers and follow debates and discuss current issues using more complex and linguistically accurate structures

Upper Intermediate (Level 5)

Who is this for?

This level (20 weeks) is for those who are able to use the language with a high degree of fluency and accuracy.

Upper Intermediate 5A and 5B are 10 weeks each and may be taken in any order.

Module A

What topics are covered?

  • Italian stereotypes
  • Cultural habits and clichés
  • Social issues and discriminations
  • Media and modern communication
  • New technologies and neologism
  • Italian language identity

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Subjunctive present and past
  • Indefinite adjectives and pronouns
  • Congiuntivo imperfetto and trapassato
  • Connettivi

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.


Module B

What topics are covered?

  • Adverbs and adjectives
  • Subjunctive and sebbene
  • Subjunctive and nonostante
  • Hypothetical clauses and conditional

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This module covers:

  • Tenses: imperfect subjunctive (congiuntivo imperfetto), the pluperfect subjunctive (congiuntivo trapassato), the gerund (il gerundio temporale) and the past gerund (il gerundio passato)
  • Conjunctions and expressions followed by subjunctive
  • Impersonal form of the reflexive verbs (ci, si)
  • If clause in the subjunctive
  • Dopo + infinito passato

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.

What’s the end goal?

By the end of this level, students will be able to use most forms of the language in a social or professional environment.

What’s the end goal?

By the end of this level, students will be able to converse with native speakers and follow debates and discuss current issues using more complex and linguistically accurate structures

Advanced (Level 6)

Who is this for?

This level is for those who have an advanced level of language proficiency.

Advanced 6A and 6B are 10 weeks each and may be taken in any order.

Module A

What topics are covered?

  • Describing an object
  • Making a complaint
  • The language of advertising
  • Stating, arguing and defending one’s point of view
  • Asking for and granting permission
  • Making an assumption
  • Expressing a doubt
  • Criticising past choices

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Tenses: trapassato prossimo, past conditional (condizionale composto), passato remoto, future perfect (futuro anteriore), past subjunctive (congiuntivo passato)
  • Agreement between tenses and moods
  • Relative pronouns (il/la quale/i/le quali.)
  • Combined pronouns (me lo, te lo, glielo)
  • Possessives pronouns (miei tuoi, suoi)
  • Other usage of Ci

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.


Module B

What topics are covered?

  • Recounting a book plot
  • Portrait of a modern family
  • Feasts and celebrations
  • Ecological issues
  • Expressing disapproval of behavior
  • Giving an explanation
  • Arguing for or against something
  • Expressing yourself in hypothetical situations
  • Talking about past possibilities

I love grammar. Tell me more.

This course covers:

  • Tenses: imperfect subjunctive (congiuntivo imperfetto), the pluperfect subjunctive (congiuntivo trapassato), the gerund (il gerundio temporale) and the past gerund (il gerundio passato)
  • Conjunctions and expressions followed by the Subjunctive
  • The impersonal form of the reflexive verbs (ci, si)
  • If clause in the subjunctive
  • Dopo + infinito passato

What textbook do I need?

'New Italian Espresso Intermediate/Advanced A2-B1', (Bali, Maria & Ziglio, Luciana) ISBN: 9788861825710.

What’s the end goal?

This level will help students achieve a proficient (or native-like) use of the language. The main emphasis will be on conversation and group discussions with the extensive use of authentic materials

Evening courses (6:30pm - 8:30pm)

UNSW Institute of Languages 223 Anzac Parade, level 2/3 (West Tower, L5 building), Kensington.
Length: 10 sessions, 20 hours (one class per week)

Questions? We have answers.

  • How do I work out which level to enroll in?

  • What is the average class size?

  • Do I receive a certificate?

Important Information

  • This course outline is a guide only. Content may be adjusted by the teacher to meet the needs of the students in the class.
  • This is a non-CRICOS registered course. International Student Visa holders are not eligible to enrol in non-CRICOS registered courses, including Modern Languages and Part-time English / Exam Preparation classes at this time.

    However, international students who are not on a student visa can enrol in these courses. Temporary Residents who want to enrol in Modern Languages or Part-time English / Exam Preparation classes can do so by contacting admissions@unswglobal.unsw.edu.au.

  • Please note that Commonwealth financial support is not available for Non-Award programs including Global’s Foundation programs and all language courses