Academic Year 2023/2024 - Teacher: Eleonora Natalia RAVIZZA

Expected Learning Outcomes

From a metalinguistic perspective, the educational goals aim at achieving an awareness of the linguistic strategies necessary for the analysis of topical texts (e.g., newspaper articles, political or news blogs, interviews, political speeches, Twitter or Facebook profiles) found online and in newspapers in English. In particular, students should learn to identify which rhetorical strategies and which stylistical features characterise these types of texts. The educational goals of this course are coherent with the L-LIN/12 sector. Indeed, they are focused on the study of the English language at a B1/B1+ level of competence in English of the Common European Framework. The educational goals are also coherent with those of the Political Sciences Degree where the course is held (with reference to AREA 10), as it is focused on the analysis of political discourse in English.

Course Structure

Lessons, pair work and group work, reading activities, translation, listening activities, videos. 

Required Prerequisites

Basic knowledge of English grammar and vocabulary

Detailed Course Content

Analysis of Political discourse - with emphasis on online communication. Lexical and grammatical analysis developed through reading, translation and commentary on texts considered in the classroom. The analysis will be carried out through the methodologies of (verbal and visual) semiotics, intermedial studies, and stylistics. Gender issues and the discourse of nationhood will be also relevant.

Textbook Information

Selection of texts taken from different sources. Links to texts and videos discussed in class, as well as the course slides, will be published in the file folder (Studium).

For the preparation of the written test: 

Heyderman, Emma and Peter May (2019) Complete Preliminary. Student's Book with answers. With online Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

For grammar review/self-study, the following text is recommended: Murphy, R. (2019) English Grammar in Use. Book with Answers: A Self-Study Practice and Reference Book for Intermediate Learners of EnglishCambridge: Cambridge University Press

Recommended monolingual dictionary: Oxford Wordpower Dictionary, Oxford University Press

Textbooks for the preparation of the oral exam (highly recommended for non-attending students): 

-Giuseppe Gaetano CastorinaRita SalviManuela Cipri, Texts, Tools and Trends. Inglese per le scienze economiche, sociali, politiche e giuridiche. Milano: Monduzzi. (Chapters: "Caratteristiche ed espressività delle strutture lessicali inglesi", "Espressività delle strutture foniche", "Appunti sulla pronuncia dell’inglese, un sistema di sistemi linguistici", "Caratteristiche ed espressività delle strutture grammaticali")

Annabelle Mooney, Language, Society and Power: An Introduction. London: Routledge. Chapters 1,2,3,4,5

Learning Assessment

Learning Assessment Procedures

Written test (B1/B1+ CEFR) based on the Preliminary English Test (TEST): reading comprehension, listening comprehension, writing. As for the oral exam, students will be expected to give a presentation and apply the methodologies learnt in class to the analysis of relevant texts on topics of their choice (though pertinent to what done in class). Detailed instructions on how to prepare oral presentations will be provided. The final grade will take into account both the linguistic (listening comprehension, reading comprehension, writing, speaking, pronunciation) and the metalinguistic (choice of texts, analysis, presentation structure) competences.

Examples of frequently asked questions and / or exercises

Examples of listening, reading and writing exercises in preparation for the Written Test will be provided during the course. Questions that students should expect during their oral presentation: "What interesting rhetorical effects did you detect in the text?" "What stylistic features (syntax, lexical choices, etc) emerge from the text?"