The course is aimed at second-year BA students. It consists of lectures (Corso Monografico) and practical language classes (Esercitazioni). Corso Monografico aims to provide students with advanced-level theoretical tools to consolidate their implicit and explicit knowledge of English phonetics/phonology and English grammar and to carry out English/Italian comparative/contrastive analyses. Aspects of syntactic change in 21st century English are also addressed. Esercitazioni aim to develop students' receptive and productive skills in English at an advanced level.
Expected learning outcomes
Knowledge and understanding: the notion of lexicogrammatical 'construction' and the syntactic and semantic features of the main English constructions (The Genitive, N of N and N N constructions, The Ditransitive construction, The Passive Voice construction, The Middle Voice construction, The Causative construction, The Resultative construction); syntactic and semantic features of the English verb phrase (Formal, Semantic and Proximal Subject-Verb Agreement, Time/Tense, Situation types, Aspect, Mood and Modality), the main syntactic changes in 21st century English; elements of English graphophonetics, weak and strong forms of function words, stress in compounds. Applying knowledge and understanding: Corso monografico: students need to be able to a. identify in texts of different types and analyse metalinguistically the main English lexicogrammatical constructions; b. carry out English/Italian comparative/contrastive analyses of the syntactic and semantic features of constructions and the verb phrase; c. carry out phonetic transcriptions of words and utterances and identify/reproduce stress in compounds; d. consult online corpora and concordancers. Esercitazioni. Students need to be able to a. listen to academic talks and take notes; b. engage in monologues (presentations) and dialogues on current affairs issues, presenting their points of view and arguing their opinions; c. write short academic essays on a wide range of topics, arguing against or in favour a claim/position.
Activity scheduled over several sessions (see Course syllabus and organization section for more detailed information).
The course (Seeing through 21st century English) is made up of three teaching units: Unit A: The English Verb Phrase: Tense/Aspect/Modality Unit B: English Constructions Unit C: English Graphophonemics and Suprasegmental Phonology Teaching Unit A will focus on the English Verb and Aspect systems vis-à-vis the Italian ones and on the semantic category of Modality. Teaching Unit B will introduce the concept of 'lexicogrammatical construction' and analyze the main English phrasal and clause constructions. Teaching Unit C will give students the opportunity to review and consolidate aspects of English graphophonemics and suprasegmental phonology, with reference to some of the main accents of English (General British, Estuary, General American). The course syllabus is valid until February 2020.
Prerequisites for admission
The course is held entirely in English. Students are expected to have a Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. Learning, Teaching, Assessment (CEFR) B2 proficiency level in English to be able to take part in the teaching activities and to complete the assignments.
The course adopts the following learning and teaching methods: -interactive lectures/theoretical input sessions - tasks: phonemic transcription, metalinguistic and contrastive analysis, Italian-English translation The course also features practical language classes (see esercitazioni description).
The course website (https://anavali2.ariel.ctu.unimi.it/v5/home/Default.aspx), which is hosted on the university's Ariel platform, features lesson handouts and notes and further teaching and learning materials. The reading list for each unit of the course is provided below: Unit A Depraetere, I. e C. Langford. 2012. Advanced English Grammar. A Linguistic Approach. London: Bloomsbury Anderwald, L. 2017. I'm Loving It - Marketing Ploy or Language Change in Progress? Studia Neophilologica 89/2: 176-196 Unit B Depraetere, I. e C. Langford. 2012. Advanced English Grammar. A Linguistic Approach. London: Bloomsbury Cowan, R. 2008. The Teacher's Grammar of English. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (pp. 330-339; pp. 396-397; pp. 404-405; pp. 408-409; pp. 471-484) Celce-Murcia, M. e D. Larsen-Freeman. 2015. The Grammar Book. An ESL/EFL Teacher's Course. Third edition. Boston: Heinle (pp. 359-361) Wierzbicka, A. 2006. English: Meaning and Culture. Oxford: Oxford University Press (pp. 171-183) Unit C Carley, P., I. Mees e B. S. Collins. 2018. English Phonetics and Pronunciation Practice. London: Routledge (pp. 231-247) Collins, B. S. e I. M. Mees. 2013. Practical Phonetics and Phonology. A Resource Book for Students. Third edition. London: Routledge (pp. 109-120; 133-134).
Students who are unable to attend the course are strongly encouraged to contact the course lecturers during their office hours.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The course (three teaching units and practical language classes) is assessed through both written and oral tests. 50% of the overall exam mark (out of 30) is allocated to the three course units and 50% to the practical language classes. Units A, B, C. Students are required to take a written test and an oral test. The written test is made up of open questions, phonemetic transcription and metalinguistic analysis tasks and Italian-English translations of sentences. Students who attend the course regularly may opt to take two mid-term tests instead of the final written test. The oral test requires students to present a portfolio of ten 600-word English texts. The texts making up each student's portfolio may be drawn from newpaper articles, contemporary fiction, TV series or film scripts. Students will need to be able to- - read the texts aloud with correct pronunciation - translate the texts into Italian - identify in the texts examples of the syntactic features dealt with during the course and carry out English/Italian contrastive/comparative analyses.
Pratical language classes: The written test lasts 170 minutes and is made up of three sections: 1. Listening comprehension Students listen to a monologue or an interview twice and answer 30 questions (gap fill or short answers required) 2. Written Cloze Test Students read a newspaper article and fill in 30 gaps in the text 3. Essay Writing Students write a 250-300 word essay choosing one of two proposed topics. No dictionaries are allowed to be used when taking any section of the written test. A mark out of 30 will be allocated to each of the three sections of the test. To pass the test, the average of the three marks has to be 18/30 or higher. For at least two parts of the test, students are required to obtain a mark of 18/30 or higher. The writing section of the exam will be evaluated according to the following criteria: text and paragraph structure, cohesion, morphology and syntax, lexis, use of appropriate register.
The oral test requires students to deliver a presentation and to engage in an interview. The 8-10 minute presentation will focus on a topic chosen by the student (out of the issues dealt with during the practical language classes). A short interview with an examiner will follow the student presentation. Students' oral performance will be assessed in terms of lexicogrammatical and phonetic/phonological accuracy, oral fluency and ability to present and argue specific opinions and points of view. Student who attend the practical language classes regularly may opt to take two oral and written mid-term assessment tests instead of the final oral and written tests.
International or Erasmus incoming students are required to contact the course lecturers as soon as possible. Alternative assessment methods for SEN and disabled students will have to be arranged with the course lecturers and the University Disability Office.
This course aims at strengthening the English language knowledge and competence. Students will be introduced to the language of journalism. The study and analysis of editorial articles dealing with various and varied topics will aim at raising students' awareness, knowledge and competence of the English grammar and lexis. A brief introduction to the grammar of images will be done in order to prompt a better understanding of multimodal discourse taking into consideration that the articles under analysis are all made up of verbal and a visual part. Hallyday's systemtic functional grammar framework will provide the necessary tools to study the verbal language, while G. Kress e T. Van Leeuwen's visual semiotics will support students' analysis of the visual grammar. Functional linguistics topics that are going to be studied are the following: Language, grammar and communication 2. Language and its metafunctions a. Ideational: linguistic processes, participants and circumstances; b. Interpersonal: speech functions; modality and modulation; epistemic, deontic and dynamic modality; c. Textual: theme/rheme, given/new, grammatical and lexical cohesion, cohesion and clause relation (parataxis, hypotaxis, locution).
As regards visual grammar the brief overview that will be presented is the following: 1.Images and visual metafunctions: · Ideational (participants, processes, circumstances) · Interpersonal (gaze, distance, perspective) · Textual (left/right, top/bottom, centre/margin).
Grammar topics that the course aims at developing are the following: modal verbs, the verbs and its complements, the noun and the noun phrase, lexical markers of cohesion (connectors).
Prerequisites for admission
The course is entirely held in English. All the documents, texts and bibliography presented are in English. Students' linguistic competence is expected to be assessed at a solid B2 level.
While topics and the theoretical issues are presented frontal lectures will be held. When students are asked to exercise and test their competence in the productive (writing and speaking) and in the receptive (reading and listening) skills, pair works and group activities will be arranged.
All the docuements, texts, PPT presentations on the theoretical issues dealt with during the course, as well as the exercises done in class and two mock exams can be downloaded from the Ariel platform: (https://anavali2.ariel.ctu.unimi.it/).
The reference textbook to study grammar topics is the following: Depraetare,I. and C. Langford. 2012. Advanced English Grammar. A Linguistic Approach. London: Bloomsbury.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists in a written test. Test duration: 2 hours. The exam is organised in two parts. In the first part students will be asked to answer three questions about the theoretical issues on the frameworks presented during the lectures. In the second part students will be asked to do some grammar exercises (fill the gaps, rephrasing, multiple choice) on the grammar topics that had been studied during the course. The first part counts 45 points, each questions is attributed maximum 15 points. The second part counts 55 points. In order to pass the exam students must get a minimum of 60 points out of 100. No dictionary is allowed during the exam.