Political sciences and international relations
Study-unit Code
In all curricula
Diana Bianchi
  • Diana Bianchi
  • 63 ore - Diana Bianchi
Course Regulation
Coorte 2022
Learning activities
Discipline linguistiche
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Obbligatorio (Required)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
The course focuses on the language of news and political communication in English. Texts of various genres, functions and topics dealing with relevant political, social and cultural issues, from written and audiovisual sources, are analysed and used in activities specifically devised to develop comprehension and production skills.
Reference texts
ATTENDING STUDENTS – Attending students do not have a set textbook. Texts and materials to be used during the lessons will be made available on the Unistudium platform of the university at the beginning of the course. Suggestions for further reading will be provided during the course.

NON ATTENDING STUDENTS – Non attending students should choose one of the following texts:

A.Mooney and B. Evans, "Language, Society and Power. An introduction." Routledge, 2018 (cap. 1,2,3,4,6, 9,10).

A. Partington and C. Taylor, "The Language of Persuasion in Politics. An Introduction." London and New York, Routledge, 2018 (cap. 1,2,3,4,5,7,10).
Educational objectives
The course aims at consolidating intermediate level language competence and skills, as well as fostering abilities and knowledge regarding text-typological and lexicogrammatical features of the English used in political and media communication.
The main acquired knowledge will be:
- Knowledge of the main genres of political and media communication
- Knowledge of the basic terms and idioms of the English used in politics and the media
- Knowledge of the main syntactical structures, especially as relevant to the news and political discourse
- Knowledge of the main rhetorical structures and figures of political and media language
- Knowledge of historical and cultural elements regarding the United Kingdom and the United States.

The main acquired skills will be:
- Reading comprehension skills, particularly relating to news language and political texts.
- Listening comprehension skills, particularly relating to current topics in the news and political speeches
- Metalinguistic awareness
- Self-study skills
In order to attend the course of English for International Studies students must first obtain a B1 certificate from the University Language Center (CLA – Centro Linguistico di Ateneo). The following International certificates are also accepted: TOEFL iBT score 57 or higher, IELTS 4 or higher, Cambridge PET or higher, Trinity ISE 1 or higher. The CLA certificate expires after 24 months, while international certificates expire after 36 months from the date the test was taken. Students who have an international certificate must show it to the teacher during the first year of their degree course or within the first month from the beginning of the course of English for International Studies.

NB: The new "Inglese Basic" test at the CLA cannot be used as a replacement for the B1 certificate.
Teaching methods
The course comprises lectures with audiovisual material (slides and videos), and classroom activities carried out individually, in pairs and in groups.
Other information
Attendance to the course of English for International Studies is not compulsory. Students who attend are, however, required to have a valid B1 certificate before attending the course. Attendance status will be conferred only to students with a valid B1 certificate who attend 75% of the course.

All information regarding the course, including the teacher's contact hours, programmes, etc, is available on Unistudium.

All students must enroll using the SOL platform, available at:
Learning verification modality
Assessment criteria differ for attending and non-attending students.

ATTENDING STUDENTS: Students who regularly attend the course take one written test at mid-term and an oral exam during one of the set exam dates, starting from January 2024. On the whole, the exams are aimed at testing reading comprehension skills, the ability to apply the acquired knowledge for the critical analysis of written documents in the news media and political discourse, and the capacity to communicate appropriately and express a personal point of view in the foreign language. The 90-minute written exam includes a reading comprehension activity based on one of the textual typologies examined during the course and a few open questions based on the program covered during the course. The oral exam consists of an interview of about 10-15 minutes about the topics not covered in the written exam. The overall evaluation takes into account the score of the CLA B1 certificate, the score of the written exam, and the oral assessment. Students who take the exam after November 2024 will be considered as non-attending students and tested accordingly (see section below).

NON-ATTENDING STUDENTS: The exam consists of a 20-25 minute interview during which students have to show their ability to read and report orally in English the content of the material in the given textbook. They also have to show they have developed the appropriate linguistic competence by doing the activities in the chosen textbook. The overall evaluation of non-attending student is based on the oral exam, and also takes into account the score obtained in the CLA B1 certificate. Non-attending students are required to contact the teacher (email: diana.bianchi@unipg.it) to obtain
detailed information on how to prepare for the exam based on the material from the textbook.

Information for students with disabilities and/or DSA is available at:
Extended program
The course of English for International Studies focuses on the language of news and political communication. The activities are based on the analysis of authentic written and audiovisual texts of various type and function (e.g. news items, editorials, presidential speeches). The topics dealt with during the course will especially focus on political, cultural and social issues related to the United Kingdom and the United States. The documents are used as input for metalinguistic analysis, development of reading and listening comprehension skills, development of oral and written production skills
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