Skip to main content


    1. Course Overview
    2. Course Organization
    3. Course Outline
    4. Suggested 8-Week Schedule


Benvenute e Benvenuti!

With Italian Language and Culture: Intermediate you will enhance your Italian language skills, enrich your vocabulary and expand your conversational skills. You will learn how to have exchanges on a variety of topics, and continue your immersion in the Italian culture through unique videos and interviews. 

The course will stay open for 12 months from the starting date, as a self-paced course: this means that you can cover the material at your own speed within the time frame of 12 months, starting January 25th, 2016.
Although we estimate that, studying 3-4 hours per week, it will take you about 8 weeks to complete the course, you are under no obligation to finish within this time. Please see the suggested eight week schedule below for a sample on how to divide the material. 

You may decide to study towards a Verified Certificate of Completion ($49), or to learn for your personal enrichment and pleasure.

To receive a Verified Certificate of Completion you must obtain a final score of 60%. This is calculated as follows:

- Tests count 90% of your final score. You may drop 2 Tests.

- Esercizi (self-graded exercises) count 10% of your final score. You may drop 4 Esercizi.

The material you will study in this class was successfully tested in an entirely online course offered in summer 2014 and summer 2015, taken by about 1,500 students, all of them either Wellesley College students, alumnae, or selected high school students.


The course consists of four Units. Each Unit is broken down in 6-7 lessons (5.1, 5.2, 5.3, etc.)
Each lesson presents its content in multiple ways. These can be viewed and studied in any order you prefer.
Below is a quick overview of the various components of each unit.

Ciak! videos: original videos shot on our campus with native and near native speakers of Italian. Each Ciak! video is followed by two downloadable Podcasts. These will be ideal for your on-the-go practice.

Grammar charts: grammar explanations, examples, and charts are available for review with audio files of each example and verb conjugation within the course, and can be downloaded in PDF file format.

Slide Shows with animation: grammar explanations with images and animation.

Videos (Slide Shows with Narration)
: narrated grammar explanations.

Esercizi: online exercises with immediate feedback.

Vocaboli nuovi: new vocabulary lists are available as PDF files, slide show presentations, and videos with narration.

Discussione: creative writing prompts.

Lettura: readings delivered as PDF files, slide show presentations, and videos with narration.

Intervista: interview with a native speaker on a variety of cultural subjects.

[Back to top]


Below is an outline of the material we will cover this semester as it is presented in the edX platform. Since we don't have a textbook, this outline is the equivalent of a Table of Contents in any textbooks. 



Unit 5

La casa e la moda

(Home and fashion)

5.1 Verbi riflessivi
(Reflexive verbs)

5.1 Test

5.2 Verbi riflessivi (passato prossimo) e costruzione reciproca
(Reflexive verbs [past simple] and reciprocal construction)

5.2 Test

5.3 Comparativi

5.3 Test

5.4 Superlativi e comparativi irregolari
(Superlatives and irregular comparatives)

5.4 Test

5.5 LETTURE: La casa e la moda
(Readings: Home and fashion)

5.6 INTERVISTA con Eugenia Paulicelli: Il made in Italy e la sprezzatura
(Interview with Eugenia Paulicelli: The made in Italy and “la sprezzatura”)

Unit 6

L'arte italiana

(Italian art)

6.1 Passato remoto
(Past absolute)

6.1 Test

6.2 Passato remoto e imperfetto
(Past absolute and imperfect)

6.2 Test

6.3 Pronomi relativi
(Relative pronouns)

6.3 Test

6.4 Pronomi e aggettivi indefiniti
(Indefinite pronouns and adjectives)

6.4 Test

6.5 LETTURA: L'arte italiana
(Reading: Italian art)

6.6 INTERVISTA con Franco Mormando: Rinascimento e barocco, arte e poesia
(Interview with Franco Mormando: Renaissance and Baroque, art and poetry)

6.7 INTERVISTA con Sergio Parussa: Giovanni Pascoli e la poesia “Lavandare”
(Interview with Sergio Parussa: Giovanni Pascoli and the poem “Lavandare”)

Unit 7

La salute e il sistema sanitario

(Health and health care system)

7.1 Pronomi oggetto diretto e indiretto
(Direct and indirect object pronouns)

7.1 Test

7.2 Pronomi oggetto diretto (accordo con il participio passato)
(Direct object pronouns [agreement with the past participle])

7.2 Test

7.3 Verbi piacere, mancare, occorrere e servire
(Verbs to like, to miss, to be necessary and to be of use / to need)

7.3 Test

7.4 LETTURA: La salute e il sistema sanitario in Italia
(Reading: Health and the healthcare system in Italy)

7.5 INTERVISTA con Salvatore Mascia: La farmacia in Italia
(Interview with Salvatore Mascia: The pharmacy in Italy)

Unit 8

Fare la spesa e fare le spese

(Shopping in Italy)

8.1 Futuro semplice e futuro di probability
(Simple future and future of probability)

8.1 Test

8.2 Condizionale (presente e passato)
(Conditional [present and past])

8.2 Test

8.3 Pronomi "ne" e "ci"
(Pronouns “ne” and “ci”)

8.3 Test

8.4 Pronomi combinati
(Combined pronouns)

8.4 Test

8.5 LETTURA: Fare la spesa e fare le spese in Italia
(Reading: Shopping in Italy)

8.6 INTERVISTA con Teresa Alfarano: il mio negozio di scarpe e accessori ad Alba
(Interview with Teresa Alfarano: My shoe and accessory shop in Alba)

[Back to top]

Suggested 8-week schedule

Week 1

5.1, 5.2

Week 2

5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6

Week 3

6.1, 6.2

Week 4

6.3, 6.4, 6.5

Week 5

6.6, 6.7, 7.1

Week 6

7.2, 7.3, 7.4, 7.5

Week 7

8.1, 8.2

Week 8

8.3, 8.4, 8.5, 8.6

[Back to top]