The study of Italian in the target language encourages students to gain a deep appreciation of the language, culture and literature through active participation and meaningful experience with the culture on its own terms. Italian courses at Williams are therefore conducted exclusively in Italian in order to enhance and reinforce the emotive and cognitive involvement of the students as they are introduced to the Italian world-view in a lively and natural manner.
Students desirous of more contact with Italian are encouraged to attend the weekly Italian Table in the designated college dining hall.
Every year our students choose to spend a semester or two in Italy under the auspices of accredited academic programs. Among the cities that have hosted them are Rome, Florence, Siena, Padua, Perugia, Bologna, Parma and Lecce. A number of students also opt for a January course in Italy. Additionally, some of our students have been awarded post-graduate Fulbright teaching assistantships and scholarships for further study and/or work in Italy.
RLIT 101(F) SEM Elementary Italian
This course is designed for beginners. Its goal is to give students the opportunity to develop a basic oral/aural and reading/writing proficiency in Italian. During the semester, you will be given training in grammar, pronunciation, aural-oral skills, reading, and writing in Italian by studying a wide range of communication patterns and real-life situations. At the end of the semester, you will be able to use Italian to talk about yourself, describe your family, town, friends, and discuss your interests. You will also be able to talk in Italian about the present and past events and converse with your peers about your daily activities. Your listening skills will allow you to understand short dialogues and conversations, watch clips from mainstream Italian films, and write short compositions. Conducted entirely in Italian. The course is taught in person. [ more ]
RLIT 102(S) SEM Elementary Italian
This course is designed for beginners who already have some basic knowledge of Italian. Its goal is to give students the opportunity to review and expand their oral/aural and reading/writing proficiency in Italian. During the semester, you will continue to learn grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation while improving your aural-oral skills, reading, and writing in Italian. The instructor will present you with a wide range of communication patterns and real-life situations to achieve these goals. At the end of the semester, you will be able to use Italian to talk about yourself, your life, describe your town and history, dreams and interests, and express your opinion on complex topics. You will also be able to talk in Italian about the present, past, and future events and express doubts and hopes. You will understand more complex conversations and clips from mainstream Italian films and write more extended compositions. Conducted entirely in Italian. [ more ]
RLIT 105(F) SEM Pathway to Proficiency
The course taught in Italian aims primarily to fine-tune the student's speaking, reading, and writing ability while introducing the formal study of Italian culture and society by analyzing short literary texts, articles, films, and plays. This course will also explore Italy's lesser-known cultural and natural sites in an attempt to highlight what Italy has to offer in terms of eco-friendly and sustainable tourism and cultural diversity. In the wake of Black Lives Matter's quest for social justice, a part of this course will be dedicated to Italian black writers and artists to explore how the Italian colonial past affects Italy's racial discourse and the construction of its national identity. Students will review and expand the previous semesters' grammar structures to achieve a higher level of fluency and sophistication in language production. Italian 105 is intended for study-abroad returnees and other advanced speakers; students who have been particularly successful in Italian 101-102 are also encouraged to enroll. The course is taught in person. [ more ]