Though formal undergraduate teaching of Italian only started at Edinburgh in the years immediately after WW1, studying Italian was already part of the university tradition well before this.
Sir Walter Scott, for instance, in his very first year at Edinburgh University, caused a stir when he announced to the professor of Greek that the Italian writer Ariosto was a far better poet than Homer!
Taken from scratch, or following school instruction, Italian can be studied as a single subject degree, or in combination with a very wide range of other subjects, including a comprehensive collection of both modern and ancient languages. Whatever the eventual combination, the broad based structure of the Scottish degree ensures that you will also get a wider education in the first two years, with outside subjects drawn from a mouth-watering list of disciplines, taught by acknowledged experts.
All of our undergraduate language degrees are four years in duration. The first two years of Italian provide a solid foundation in both language and culture, with a strong emphasis on competence and coverage. The third year is spent abroad, and this is when the first two years of preparation bear fruit, as you turn classroom learning into living engagement with Italy. When you return, you refine your skills with specialist language tuition and you choose option courses taught by research active experts. You yourself will be expected to engage with research, through a dissertation, supervised and directed by a researcher.
For further information on individual courses or programmes, consult the Degree Regulations and Programmes of Study.
This article was published on Aug 31, 2011