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L’italiano lingua d’Europa


Admission requirements

BA in Languages or Linguistics


The course is offered to students of the Master in (Italian) Linguistics, and aims at stimulating the students’ research interests by providing them with the competence necessary to conduct comparative investigations between Italian varieties of different geographic areas and/or belonging to different registers and other more or less closely related languages.
The course provides an introduction to the structural (fonological, morphological and syntactic) as well as the pragmatic characteristics of contemporary Italian. Relevant properties of other (mainly) European languages are compared and constrasted throughout the course. The focus is on language use in several contexts, and special attention is paid to the different levels of synchronic variation.

Course objectives

  • Course objective 1. Specific knowledge of salient properties of Italian grammar, with respect to other more or less closely related languages.

  • Course objective 2. Specific knowledge of the grammatical (syntactic, morphological, phonological) changes and variation of contemporary Italian from a comparative perspective.

  • Course objective 3. Acquisition of the research methodology required for conducting independent investigations (e.g. corpus search, field-work methods, study methods, literature search).

  • Course objective 4. Acquisition of the theoretical tools that are necessary for elaborating an independent and innovative analysis of the linguistic facts under examination.


The timetable will be available by June 1st on the website.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Course Load

The course load of this course is 280 hours.

  • hours spent on attending lectures and seminars: 28

  • time for studying the compulsory literature: 185

  • time to prepare for the exam and/or write a paper (including reading / research): 67

Assessment method

Study of material presented in class (course slides), and of the compulsory literature will be assessed with in-class discussion. Assigned homework will be corrected in class. Active participation in class and study/work at home will be part of the final evaluation (15%).

The student will chose a topic of investigation, which will be presented in class at the end of the semester. Evaluation of the presentation will contribute to the final grade (15%). The student will then write a paper on the chosen topic where s/he will provide an analysis (or discuss various working hypotheses) for the investigated linguistic phenomena. The paper may be in English or in Italian (Italian is mandatory for students of the Italian track). The paper grade will contribute to the final evaluation (70%).


This course is supported by blackboard.

Reading list

  • Sobrero, Alberto (1993 (2008)). Introduzione all’italiano contemporaneo, Le strutture (vol. 1); Le variazioni e gli usi (vol. 2) Roma-Bari: Edizioni Laterza.

  • Donati, Caterina (2008). La sintassi. Regole e strutture. Bologna: Il Mulino.

Additional literature and literature for students who do not understand Italian will be provided during the course and decided together with the teacher.


Students should register through uSis. If you have any questions, please contact the departmental office, tel. 071 5272144 or mail

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration via Studeren à la carte
Registration via Contractonderwijs


MA Linguistics departmental office, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 102C. Tel. 071 5272144;