English I

A.Y. 2019/2020
9
Max ECTS
60
Overall hours
SSD
L-LIN/12
Language
English
Learning objectives
This is a first-year, two semester-course. The aim of the course is to familiarize students with key concepts in discourse analysis through in-depth study of authentic texts typical of a variety of professional domains, mostly in the fields of corporate communication, both internal and external. Students will learn to recognize the discursive, textual, and rhetorical strategies deployed in the texts and to assess their pragmatic effects. They will also learn to produce effective written texts in the domains considered. Professionally oriented oral communication skills will also be developed. The course combines theoretical and applied perspectives, and includes an advanced grammar component. The minimum requirement for the course is B2 plus level of the CEFR (competences approaching C1 are desirable) . The exit level is set at C1 plus of the CEFR, with special reference to specialized communication in corporate settings.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course students will have acquired a broad range of advanced grammatical structures and specialized vocabulary, which they will be able to deploy strategically in both writing and speaking. They will have mastered the principles of genre analysis, thereby acquiring transferable competences which they will be able to put to use in their future professional careers. While the course will mainly focus on corporate communication, the competences acquired extend beyond it to provide a strong basis for future application in any professional field.
Course syllabus and organization

Unique edition

Responsible
Lesson period
year
Course syllabus
Unit 1. Advanced Language Awareness for Corporate Communication
The unit aims to provide students with advanced competences in English syntax and specialised vocabulary, with special regard to text writing strategies in the field of corporate communication. The unit will focus on advanced grammar, especially on logical connectors and on issues of topicalisation, focus, emphasis and information structure.
Advanced Language Awareness for Corporate Communication

Unit 2
An Introduction to Corporate Communication in English: A Linguistic Approach
The unit aims to enhance students' awareness of the strategic nature of corporate communication, with special regard to the linguistic means whereby rhetorical and pragmatic effects are achieved. Starting from in-depth analyses of the rhetorical features of selected corporate communication genres, students will learn to recognize the rhetorical moves deployed in them and the linguistic structures used to realize them. Students will learn to bridge the gap between theory-based text analysis and text production. The genres discussed will range from the press release to the internal report, to the financial report, to the CEO letter in annual reports, to the mission statement etc. The overall aim of this part of the syllabus is to train students to recognize different genres and the rhetorical strategies associated with them, linking them to their intended communicative purpose(s).

Unit 3
Building texts: from theory to application
Unit 3 builds on the competences developed in Units 1 and 2, guiding students through the principles of text composition across the range of genres analysed. Student will practice writing in a range of corporate genres. All writing tasks will be accompanied by self-reflective activities on the writing process, so as to enhance students' awareness of linguistic and rhetorical strategies deployed in corporate communication. A writing seminar will be organized to help students hone their writing skills.
Prerequisites for admission
Students are expected to have English language competences matching AT LEAST B2 plus level in the CEFR. Competences approaching C1 level are desirable. Please be aware that no special provisions are made for students who fail to meet these requirements. It is the students' responsibility to ensure that their starting competences are adequate, and to fill any gaps through self-study should their knowledge of English be below B2 plus level.
The self-assessment grid for the CEFR level can be found here: https://www.coe.int/en/web/common-european-framework-reference-language….
Teaching methods
Lectures, plus language practice sessions and seminars. All classes are held in English. The course consists of 30 lectures (60 hours) over two semesters taught by the course professor(s).
In addition to these lectures, language practice sessions ("esercitazioni") are scheduled (see the official timetable). Students are strongly advised to attend them.
Language practice sessions are designed to help students improve their overall language skills (grammar & vocabulary, writing, reading, listening and speaking), which are expected to reach C1 plus level in the CEFR.
Writing seminars are also scheduled in the second term in preparation for the exam. Students are strongly advised to take advantage of these opportunities to practice their language skills.

Language practice sessions: textbooks
Allison, J., Appleby, R., de Chazal, E. 2009. The Business Advanced Student's Book DVD Rom Pack. Macmillan. ISBN: 978-0230021518
Wellman, G. e Side, R. 2002. Grammar and Vocabulary for Cambridge Advanced and Proficiency. New Edition. With Key. Longman. ISBN: 9780582518216

Further reference
Longman Business English Dictionary, Third Edition. Longman. ISBN: 9781405852593.
Oxford Business English Dictionary for Learners of English. Oxford University Press. ISBN: 9780194315845.
Macmillan English Dictionary for Advanced Learners, New Edition. Macmillan. ISBN: 9781405025263.

For further information about language practice sessions, class materials, updated reading lists and exams please refer to the course website on the Ariel platform (http://pcatenaccioli1lin.ariel.ctu.unimi.it/v3/home/Default.aspx). For information about office hours please check the "Chi e Dove" section of the UNIMI website.
Bibliography
Unit 1
Materials for this part of the course will be provided in class and online. Students will rely on the course materials provided and on further materials which will be recommended in class. All materials used will be published on the course website in a timely manner.
Further reading: Celce-Murcia, M. / Larsen-Freeman, D. 1999. The Grammar Book. An ESL/EFL Teacher's Course. Second edition. Boston: Thomson Heinle: pp. 60-69; 519-537.
Carter, R. / McCarthy, M. 2006. Cambridge Grammar of English. Cambridge: CUP: 838-851.
Downing, A. / Locke; P. 2006. English Grammar. A University Course. Second edition. Routledge: pp. 228-232; 238-262.

Unit 2
Darics, Erika / Koller, Veronika 2017. Language in Business, Language at Work. London: Palgrave.
Further reading
Catenaccio P. 2008. Press releases as a hybrid genre: Addressing the informative/promotional conundrum. Pragmatics. 18(1): 9-32.
Catenaccio, P. 2012. Understanding CSR Discourse: A Linguistic Perspective. Milano: Arcipelago.
Fairclough, N. 1993. Critical discourse analysis and the marketisation of public discourse: The universities. Discourse and Society. 4 (2): 133-68.
Mautner, G. 2005. The entrepreneurial university: A discursive profile of higher education buzzwords. Critical Discourse Studies 2: 95-120.
Ran, Bing / Duimering, P. Robert 2007. Imaging the Organization. Language Use in Organizational Identity Claims. Journal of Business and Technical Communication. 21(2): 155-187.
Swales, J. M. / Rogers, P- S. 1995. Discourse and the projection of corporate culture: The mission statement. Discourse and Society 6: 223-242.
Upton, Thomas A. (2002). Understanding direct mail letters as a genre. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics 7(1): 65-85.
These materials will be made available on the course website or through the library.
Unit 3
An electronic coursepack will be made available on the course website on the Ariel platform. The coursepack will include text samples and practice tasks.
Assessement methods and criteria
Assessment is exam-based. Students must successfully complete a written and an oral language skills test before they are allowed to sit the final exam. It is necessary to pass the written language test to be able to sit the oral language test. Both tests must be completed before you sit the oral exam with the course subject professor. Written language testing typically takes place at the beginning of each exam period (May, September, January).

1. Language skills test:s:
1.a. Language skills written test
This written test is composed of two parts
1. Use of English: This part tests students' competences in grammar and vocabulary (C1 plus level, advanced Business English vocabulary). Tasks include cloze tests, sentence transformations and multiple choice gapfills. Students are given 45 minutes to complete the tasks. No dictionaries are allowed. The test may be administered electronically, in whole or in part.
For the purpose of evaluation, the three parts have diffierent weights.
Sentence transformation (10, C1 level minimum): weight: 20/30
Cloze test (10 blanks): weight: 5/30
Multiple choice gapfill (10 gaps): 5/30
You must have at least 60% correct answers overall, and no less that 50% in each part in order to pass the test. This means no less than 18/30 overall, with no less than 10/30 in the sentence transformation exercise, and no less than 5/30 between the multiple choice gapfill and the cloze test. If you get 18/30 overall, l but less than 50% in any single part, you will have to resit.
2. The second part of the language skills written test consists of a text writing task. The task involves writing a text of professional quality in one of the genres analysed during the course (press release, fundraising letter, financial report, internal report etc.). Students have 90 minutes to complete the task and are expected to write between 300 and 400 words. Monolingual dictionaries are allowed. A mark is awarderd out of 30. The mark reflects the level of professional quality of the task, measured in lexical appropriateness, grammatical correctness, respect of genre conventions and strategic suitability.
The final mark of the language skills written test is a nark out of 30 and represents the average of the marks for the two parts.

1.b. Language skills oral test
The language skills oral test consists of a simulated job interview. Students will be asked to play the role of either the interviewer or the interviewee and will have to demonstrate the ability to engage in challenging professional interactions. Assessment will be based on command of the language and will evaluate structure and vocabulary, adequacy of pronunciation and intonation patterns, fluency, authenticity/idiomaticity, and strategic effectiveness (C1 plus level). Students may obtain a mark for this part of the assessment during language practice sessions (interim assessment). Students who have not been assessed during language practice sessions will have to take the language skills oral test on the same day as they sit the oral exam with the course subject professor. A mark is awarded for this test out of 30.

Only students who have successfully passed both the written and the oral language skills tests will be able to sit the final exam.

2. Final exam
The final exam will consist in an oral exam with the course subject professors, who will award the final mark (based on the marks obtained in the individual parts, but with no strict adherence to mathematical mean values). Students will have to prove they have mastered the concepts covered during the course and can talk about them in an academically appropriate manner. They must be prepared to discuss theoretical principles and apply them to sample texts belonging to one or more of the genres analysed during the course. To this end, they will also be required to prepare a short project consisting of an in-depth analysis of a text of their choice (belonging to one of the genres discussed in class or to another genre), which they will discuss with the examiner during the final exam. Please note that the project is only one part of the final exam, which will cover the contents of the entire syllabus.
Part of the syllabus will be assessed through computer-based testing, either in the course of the year (interim tests) or during regular exam sessions.
Computer-based interim tests will take place once a self-contained portion of the syllabus has been completed in order to monitor the students' progress. Marks obtained in the interim tests will go towards the formulation of the final mark. Students who have successfully taken the interim tests during the academic year will be exempt from the corresponding parts of the final exam.
Teaching Unit 1
L-LIN/12 - LANGUAGE AND TRANSLATION - ENGLISH - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Professor: Catenaccio Paola
Teaching Unit 2
L-LIN/12 - LANGUAGE AND TRANSLATION - ENGLISH - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Professor: Catenaccio Paola
Teaching Unit 3
L-LIN/12 - LANGUAGE AND TRANSLATION - ENGLISH - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Professor: Riboni Giorgia
Educational website(s)