Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Quality education

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course students should reach a minimum level of B1 (Council of Europe framework) for listening skills and reading skills, while the ideal level is B2. In particular, students should be able to follow a lesson in English, to listen and report on specific information, to read a complex text and make a fluent oral report on it.

Course contents

The course is composed of 40 hours lectures and a 40 hours laboratory.

The laboratory is aimed at developing oral and presentation skills.

The 40 hours Course is organized into two modules. The first module will be devoted to enhancing students' reading skills by exposing them to a wide range of text types, in particular, reviews for the general public. Topics covered will include the analysis of the argumentative structure, references, modals, linkers and conjunctions, evaluative lexis, synonymy and polysemy, morphology. The second module will be devoted to listening skills (BBC World news), as well as to the analysis of strategies of persuasion in political speeches.


A dossier containing texts to be analyzed during the course will be made available online (Virtuale).

Recommended reading:

B. Jones, P. Norton (eds), Politics UK , Routledge 2018

J. Atkins, A. Finlayson, J. Martin, N. Turnbull, Rhetoric in British Politics and Society, Palgrave 2014

All books are available at the Biblioteca Ruffilli

Dictionaries (to choose from):
The Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary. Oxford: OUP
The Collins Cobuild English Language Dictionary. London:Collins

Teaching methods

Lectures are aimed at developing skills in order to comprehend and interpret written and oral texts of average difficulty, as well as to analyze strategies of persuasion and rhetorical features of political discourse. The course will be held in English. The G.A. Course (Advanced Group) is aimed at B2 level students.

The language laboratory is aimed at improving fluency and accuracy in speaking skills in order to allow students to reach a good command of linguistic and communicative competence. It will be conducted in relatively small groups.

Assessment methods


Assessment will be made through written tests (mid-term test and final exam) and a final oral exam. 

The mid-term test includes a reading test with multiple choice questions. Questions will include text structure, function of references, conjunctions and linkers, modality, synonyms in context and the language of evaluation. The final exam includes both a listening comprehension from BBC World News and a linguistic analysis of political speeches.

Spoken English will be assessed in an oral examination on selected parts from one of the texts in bibliography.

For the students attending the lab as well as the course the oral examination is vocational (3 chapters).

For the students attending the course but not the lab the oral examination is mandatory (3 chapters). A selection of Chapters will be published in due course.



 Written tests: Listening and Reading Comprehension

 - Oral exam

a discussion on a selection of chapters from the  books in bibliography (about 100 pages). The selection of chapters will be published in due course.




Self-learning study

Reading skills:

C. Bevitori e M. Di Serio: ReViews: online Reading Skills for students of Political Science. Bologna: CLUEB 2003.

Listening skills


for further material: please get in touch

Teaching tools

PC, Video projector, internet

Office hours

See the website of Cinzia Bevitori