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Elena Intorcia
Erricoberto Pepicelli
New English for Success
Copyright MMXIV
ARACNE editrice S.r.l.

via Raffaele Garofalo, /AB



No part of this book may be reproduced

by print, photoprint, microfilm, microfiche, or any other means,
without publishers authorization.

II edition: march
Anything that is worth teaching can be presented
in many different ways. These multiple ways can
make use of our multiple intelligences.

Howard Gardner

A great deal of intelligence can be invested in

ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.

Saul Bellow, To Jerusalem and Back


14 Foreword

Thats me!
17 Introducing oneself
19 Asking questions. Wh- questions
21 Describing people
22 Health and illness
23 Talking about peoples age
24 My place
25 Vocabulary building: Talking about oneself

27 Talking about your studies
28 Useful expressions
29 Writing practice
31 The Italian university system
32 Useful expressions
32 Making a summary
32 Say it right!
33 The British education system
36 Education in the USA
38 Focus on words
39 Vocabulary building: University studies

The world of work
41 Looking for a job
41 A job interview
42 Writing a Curriculum Vitae (CV)
43 Writing a covering letter
44 Discussing about jobs
44 Word formation. Forming jobs from verbs
45 Vocabulary building: The world of work
46 Education and work
46 Europass Language Passport
47 Work & success

The world & me
49 Travelling
51 Vocabulary building: Holidays
52 Leisure time
53 Vocabulary building: Expressing preferences
54 The world of art
54 Vocabulary corner: Art
55 An art movement: Pop Art

12 Contents

57 The history of Coca-Cola

57 Coca-Cola fun facts
58 Going art places. The Guggenheim Museum
60 The world of politics
60 The American political system
61 The British political system
62 The Italian political system
63 Vocabulary building: Politics
64 The environment
65 Pollution
67 Vocabulary building: The environment

69 A dicto-comp
71 Cell phones
72 Internet habits
72 Some phrases
73 Social networks
74 Internet slang
75 Computer acronyms
76 Basic computer terminology
76 Additional computer terminology
77 Mathematical symbols, signs and expressions
78 Measurements
79 Activities

Pronunciation & Phonetics
81 Pronunciation skills. A guide to a correct pronunciation
81 How to improve your pronunciation
83 The International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA)
84 Schwa
84 Connected speech
84 Sounds link
85 Voicing
86 The English alphabet
87 Working with phonetic transcription
88 Homophones and homographs
90 Varieties of English
90 American English (AmE)
92 British English (BrE)
94 Colloquialisms. British and American idioms
95 Vocabulary and pronunciation

Translation skills
97 How to translate some verb tenses from Italian into English
98 Tense revision
99 Activities
101 How to express a future action
New English for Success 13

102 Conditionals
103 The imperative
104 The infinitive
104 The English equivalent for the Italian verb fare
105 Reflexive verbs
106 The use of the definite article the
108 Idioms
109 False friends
109 Words with a similar meaning
110 Appropriate use of words
111 Compound words
112 Prepositions of time
112 Prepositions of place and direction
114 Activities
116 Phrasal verbs
117 Some uses of to be and to have

Composition skills
119 English syntax
119 Connecting clauses
120 Useful words and phrases to express personal opinion
120 Activities
122 The parts of a paragraph
122 Paragraphing
123 Essay writing
124 Punctuation
124 Writing tasks
125 How to write an argumentative essay (Pros & cons essay)
126 Writing tasks
127 Comparing and contrasting
128 Correcting mistakes
129 Writing letters and emails
129 The layout of a letter
130 Some tips
130 Emailing
131 Useful language

Learning skills
133 Using the dictionary
137 Giving a presentation
138 Verbal functions
139 Expanding your vocabulary
139 Word tables
139 Word diagrams
139 Word families
140 Mind maps


Dear Students,
strategies and techniques, skills and competences acquired during your course of
studies help you towards academic excellence and success in the world of work, in life
and society. Through a better knowledge of the English language you can move beyond
your provincial and/or national settings, rather limited as compared to the global
village we live in.
This book aims at granting you freedom in your learning process while carrying out
the various open activities, unless you have to reflect on morpho-syntactic aspects of
the English language.
Although these activities may appear too loose, they answer the unavoidable
urgency to involve you in reinforcing tasks aimed at overcoming the most common
language problems we have noticed during our long teaching experience at the
University of Sannio in Benevento.
Either before or after going through the suggested activities, you are invited to
assess your competences in English by checking the Self-assessment Grid of the
Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL) B1, B2 and C1
As to pronunciation, we have used the alphabet of the International Phonetic
Association. The phonetic transcriptions included in the book are specifically prepared
for users of English as a foreign language. They represent the fluent, spontaneous
everyday usage by educated people in Britain whose speech is not very much restricted
as regards geographical region or social grouping.
We are convinced that knowing the symbols and the importance of the main stress
signalled by //, phonetic transcription gives you the unique chance to read and
pronounce all the English and American words with a reasonably correct
pronunciation, overcoming most problems connected with communicability. You only
need a good dictionary. A wrong pronunciation of the phonemes //, //, //, // or
the omission of the /h/ sound, soundless in Italian, may cause negative reactions in
the native speaker and, sometimes, interfere with communication.
Translation from Italian into English is also a necessary skill, considering that
Italian students, who live in a context of English as a foreign language, mainly think in
Italian and then translate their ideas into the target language, English.

New English for Success 16

In order to improve your four language skills listening, speaking, reading and
writing you need a certain amount of vocabulary, that is why for each relevant topic
you will find a number of related words.
Contemporary issues should not be ignored either, being part of the micro-language
studied in your English course. Communication is a very crucial aspect of todays life
and we will look together at some of the ways young people like to communicate.
Some attention to grammar is also necessary and we invite you to reflect on how it
Study skills are intertwined and included in most of the sections of this book; they
are cross-curricular and transferable from one subject to another and can, obviously,
be spent in everyday life. We have capitalized on the psychological principle that you
prefer to speak about yourself rather than about a poet, artist or politician, however
great s/he might be.
New English for Success, designed for both High school and university students,
aims at being innovative because it applies some principles from modern psycho-socio-
neuro-linguistics (i.e.: learning through effort lasts longer), respecting the way our
brain works, learning chunks and not isolated words whenever possible, exploiting
learning and acquisition principles. It involves you in motivating activities to foster
both receptive and productive language skills through integrated activities.
It is practical, as it aims at equipping adult learners with abilities and competences
necessary both for academic success and success in their future life; moreover, it
matches theory and practice.
It is effective, because we are confident it will produce the result you want:
improving your English competence and acquiring additional abilities transferable in
real life.
Communicative competences are life skills and New English for Success tries to
stimulate you to be creative, to reflect, to look deeper into yourself, to help develop
critical thinking and problem solving skills, to increase self-confidence, to interact with
We strongly recommend to collaborate with your peers and, whenever you want, to
ask your teachers for help before, during, after lectures and at tutorials too.
New English for Success is the outcome of merging Relevant Notes with English for
Success with adaptations, changes, additions, updates.

If you notice any errors, please be so kind to inform us.

You can contact us at:,

Elena Intorcia
Erricoberto Pepicelli

Thats me!


1. Read Giulias presentation and fill the gaps with a suitable word from those
suggested below:
moody - well-paid - driving license - met attending -
crowded - morning - aerobics - money - town

Hello everybody!
Im Giulia Verdi. I come from a small ...........................1 in the south of Italy, not far
from Naples. Its small but lovely!
This is my first day at university. Its about 45 minutes drive from home. I took
my ...........................2 last year, so its a good practice for me. Im ...........................3
many interesting courses and Ive already ...........................4 a lot of friends: Maria is
one of them.
I go to university from Monday to Tuesday, ...........................5 and afternoon and I
love meeting my friends in the study-rooms: theyre always so ...........................6! I
find some subjects more difficult than others, but thats life, I guess!
Well, if you ask me what Id like to do in my future, the answer is quite easy:
getting a ...........................7 job, even abroad (I love travelling!) and getting married.
As to my personality, Im ...........................8, whimsical too, thats true, but on the
other hand Im caring, hard-working, even if a bit stingy: yes, I love sparing my
What else? I live in a house, not in a flat. I love going to the gym and doing
...........................10. Im fond of music; whenever I can, I go to live concerts!
Thats all for now. What about you?

2. Circle the personal pronouns subject and object that you find in the text, then
complete the table below.
subject object subject object
I me it
you we
he you
she they

18 Part 1

3. Complete the sentences with a suitable personal pronoun.

1. Do you have a dictionary? I need
2. Thats Jims wife. s Swiss.
3. Mum and dad are arriving at the airport at 2 p.m. Could you pick up?
4. Is this your brother? I had never met before.
5. I havent seen Carla for ages. Ill phone later.
6. Thank you so much! Youre always so kind to
7. Carol is not here; s at work.
8. Im meeting Sara this afternoon. Why dont you come with ?
9. My friends and love going out together at the weekend.
10. There are no students in the lecture-room right now; are in the lab.

4. Translate the following sentences into English.

1. Sono di Bari, una citt abbastanza grande nel sud dellItalia.

2. Vivo in un paese non lontano dalluniversit.

3. Mio fratello pi piccolo si chiama Carlo.

4. Non ho n fratelli n sorelle: sono figlio unico.

5. Nel tempo libero mi piace guardare la televisione o navigare in Internet.

6. Sono timido e sensibile, mentre mio fratello socievole e simpatico.

5. You meet Omer, a Turkish student at university. Introduce yourself and ask him
questions (at least 6 exchanges).
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
YOU .........................................................................................................................
OMER .........................................................................................................................
Thats me! 19


Wh- questions

Le Wh- questions sono domande formulate con pronomi o aggettivi interrogativi. Se

la frase prevede un verbo ausiliare o modale, questo si colloca prima del soggetto ed
sempre preceduto dalla Wh- question word:

Wh- word verbo ausiliare/modale soggetto verbo oggetto

+ + + +
When did you meet Jane?

In inglese le parole interrogative pi comuni, incluse le Wh- words, sono:

cose: What che cosa/quale

Which quale (tra 2 o pi di due)

persone: Who chi (sogg.)

Whom chi (compl.)
Whose di chi

luoghi: Where dove

tempo: When quando

How long per quanto tempo
How often quante volte

numero: How much Quanto

How many Quanti/e

ragione: Why Perch

maniera: How Come

et: How old Quanti anni

distanza: How far Quanto dista

1. Translate these sentences into English using the appropriate question word.

1. A: Quando sei nato?

2. B: Sono nato il 16 settembre.

3. Che scuola superiore hai frequentato?

4. Da quanto tempo studi inglese?

5. Dove vivi?

6. Quanto tempo impieghi per raggiungere luniversit?

20 Part 1

7. A che ora torni a casa, in genere?

8. Perch non vieni a pranzo a mensa?

9. Quanto costa il viaggio di andata e ritorno per Roma?

10. Quanti studenti hanno seguito la lezione, stamattina?

2. Write suitable questions to these answers.

1. A: ?
B: Im going to Rome next week.
2. A: ?
B: Because we didnt study enough.
3. A: ?
B: I prefer visiting Spain because it has a mild climate.
4. A: ?
B: No, she didnt come because she was sick.
5. A: ?
B: Yes, please. Id love a coffee.
6. A: ?
B: He met her two years ago.

3. Complete the questions with a question word in the box.

what - where - what time - why - when - how - how many - how much

1. A: will the English classes start?

B: Next Wednesday at 9 a.m.
2. A: did you get to university today?
B: On foot.
3. A: are you making a cake?
B: For tonights dinner.
4. A: people are coming over?
B: Just a few friends.
5. A: did you have for breakfast this morning?
B: A coffee and a toast.
6. A: does he work?
B: Hes a clerk in an office.
7. A: money have we got?
B: Not much, just a few Euros.
8. A: did you come back home last night?
B: Quite late, at midnight.
Thats me! 21


1. What is the difference among these questions?

a. What do you look like?
b. What are you like?
c. What do you like?

2. Match each answer to a question above.

a. I like travelling and reading adventure books.
b. Im tall and medium-built.
c. Im sociable and funny.

3. The list below includes some expressions and adjectives frequently used to
describe peoples physical appearance. Group them under the correct heading.
Face Hair Build Dress

medium-built fat tall elegant grey-haired

well-dressed baggy blonde plain over-dressed
pale straight bald oval sun-tanned
tight skinny short casual red-haired
attractive handsome curly slim good-looking

4. Here are some adjectives used to describe peoples personality. Which are
positive (+)? Which are negative ()? Which best describe your own personality?
aggressive creative insincere reliable
shallow analytic fascinating instinctive
resilient silly arrogant frank
intuitive strict rude unconventional
charismatic funny learned stingy
charming generous modest self-centered
stubborn confident greedy moody
sensible tolerant considerate imaginative

5. Write the opposites of these adjectives.

attractive ............................ wavy ......................... selfish ........................
lazy ............................ dark ......................... ugly ........................
slim ............................ bossy ......................... kind ........................
polite ............................ clever ......................... quiet ........................
22 Part 1

6. What are you like? What do you look like? Describe yourself from the physical
and psychological points of view using also adjectives and expressions found in
this section.

7. Which clothes do you usually wear? Describe your outfit giving as many details
as possible. You may use the following words:
jumper, dress, suit, skirt, trousers, pullover, T-shirt, shirt, scarf,
trousers, jeans, cardigan, sweater, coat, tie
Adjectives casual, smart, elegant, shabby, comfortable, fashionable
to wear, to suit, to buy, to try on, to get dressed, to get undressed, to
put clothes on, to take clothes off

8. Complete the sentences with a suitable form of the verbs in brackets.

1. Laura jeans and a shirt today. (wear)
2. Look! Paolo suitcase. I think hes leaving. (carry)
3. He glasses: hes shortsighted. (wear)
4. In Japan, you have to your shoes before entering a restaurant.
(take off)


1. How are you today?

Im fine, thanks. Im very well, thanks.
I dont feel very well. I feel sick.
Ive got flu. I have a temperature.
Ive got a headache / toothache / stomachache / (bad) cold/soar throat.

2. Complete the sentences with an illness from the box.

flu an allergy a cold a sore throat food poisoning

1. She keeps on coughing and blowing her nose. Shes got

2. Ive got a high fever and I have to stay in bed. I have
3. After eating at that restaurant, we were immediately sick: we got
4. I feel ill. It hurts when I swallow: Ive got
5. When Im near flowers I start itching and sneezing. I think Ive got

3. Do you practice any sports to keep fit?

4. How can you keep fit? What should you do? Here are a few suggestions:
have a good diet; get some exercise; dont have too much stress.
Thats me! 23


1. Match the English expressions with their Italian equivalent.

1. the elderly a. diventare maggiorenne
2. middle-aged b. X ha la stessa et di Y
3. aged 26 c. invecchiare
4. in her thirties d. i giovani
5. a forty-year-old man e. di 26 anni
6. X is the same age as Y f. di mezza et
7. the young g. gli anziani
8. to grow old h. un quarantenne
9. to turn of age i. sui trentanni

2. Write appropriate questions to these answers.

1. A: ........................................................?
B: Shes about one metre 70. REMEMBER!
2. A: ........................................................? When you use the before
B: No, my hair is dark brown. an adjective you refer to the
whole category.
3. A: ........................................................?
Ex.: the poor i poveri
B: Not really, theyre middle-aged.
4. A: ........................................................?
B: I think hes in his early twenties.
5. A: ........................................................?
B: I weigh 60 kilos.
6. A: ........................................................?
B: Anne is medium-height.

3. Match each word with its phonetic script. Then practice saying them.
1. age a. /'ed/
2. height b. /'ld/
3. young c. /'we/
4. old d. /'hat/
5. aged e. /'j/
6. weigh f. /'e/
7. early g. /':li/
8. thirties h. /':tz/
24 Part 1


1. Do you live in the countryside or in the city? Explain what you like and dont
like about the place where you live.
2. Do you prefer living in a city or in a village? Explain why. You can use some of
these expressions:
The quality of life is better in a compared to the
It depends on
I think that living in the is better than living in the
If I lived in the city, I would have a better social life.
3. Do you live in a house or in a flat?
4. Read the text below, then explain if you prefer living in a detached house or in a
Almost everybody in England, in the USA, in Italy and perhaps in many other parts
of the world dreams of living in a house, in a detached house and not in a row
house or in a flat.
A single building ensures privacy and a little garden gives you the chance of
growing flowers and looking after your lawn and plants. Most English people would
like to live in a cottage, as they still love rural life. It takes them back to the pre-
industrial age; if it is a thatched cottage so much the better.
British people really dislike living in a flat, in tower blocks. Many large blocks of
flats, containing hundreds of them, have recently been demolished in England. The
largest one had been built in Leeds.

5. How many types of buildings are mentioned in the text? Could you explain the
difference among them?
6. Describe a building you like for its shape/architecture.
7. Whats the strangest building you have ever seen? Whats so special about it?
Here is an example taken from the website
The model can help you prepare a description.


(Kansas City, USA)
Location: Kansas City, Missouri,
Date: unknown
Architect: unknown
Purpose: parking garage
More info: The book spines,
which measure approximately 25
feet by 9 feet, are made of
signboard mylar. The shelf
showcases 22 titles reflecting a
wide variety of reading interests
as suggested by Kansas City
readers and then selected by The
Kansas City Public Library Board
of Trustees.
Thats me! 25


Build up your own Word Bank about introductions by including phrases and
vocabulary useful for a presentation (phrasal verbs, adjectives referred to character,
etc.). Here is an example.


~ I was born on ... (day) ... (month & year) in ... (city/town)/at ... (small centre).
~ Im ... (age) years old.
~ I live in a big city/a small town/a nice village, called ...
~ I live in the city center/in the outskirts/not far from the city centre.
~ I live by myself/alone/with my family.
~ I live in a flat/apartment with some housemates. Theyre all students.
~ Im a student. I attend the Faculty of at the University of , in .
~ Im a commuter, so I travel every day by car/train/bus. It takes ... hours/minutes to
get to university from home.
~ Im interested in ... /quite into .../very good at .../-ing.
~ I like/really love -ing
~ Im fond of ...

Here are my strengths and weaknesses:

Im good/very good/bad at: I like/dont like:

being intuitive travelling

being part of social networks being independent
organizing information at meetings meeting new people
working in a team being creative
working under pressure doing routine activities
solving problems being involved in research
thinking differently using the Internet
using computers well entertaining others
being energetic motivating others
managing time well being persistent
being on time having arguments



1. Consider your school/university life, then answer these questions.

1. How far is your home from university?
2. Which means of transportation do you usually use?
3. How many days a week do you attend classes?
4. What time do lectures start?
5. Do you also have afternoon lectures?
6. What are you studying at the moment?
7. When are you sitting next exam?
8. Whats your favourite subject?
9. Which subjects do you think will help in your career?
10. Whats your idea of the ideal university/school?
11. And of the ideal teacher?
12. What about learning with technology? What are its pros and cons?

2. Which questions would you ask to get the

information requested in the form? Use
appropriate question words to write a
question for each piece of information

Ex.: Name Whats your name?

University of:
Department of:
Degree course in:
Registration number:
Year of enrolment:
Year of attendance:
Professor of English:
Timetable (English):

28 Part 2

3. Fill the gaps with the words suggested.

register - pass - attend - exam form - fail - sitting - sign - degree - lectures - mark

1. A university teacher gives on specific topics.

2. I think it is important to lectures.
3. Before an exam, you need to
4. When an exam is over, you have to the
5. All students hope to their exams; of course, they dont want
to them.
6. If you study hard, you can get a good
7. If you pass your final exams at university, you get a

4. Fill your timetable, then describe it. Use the language below for help.

Time Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday


e.g. A: When are your ... lectures/classes?

B: Theyre on ..., from ... to ... and on ...,
from ... to ...

A: How often do you go to university?

B: I attend lectures once/twice/three
times a week.
My day off is

A: Whats your favourite subject? Why?

B: I prefer/like ... because ...

I find English harder/easier than ...

I really like/dont like ... because ...
I have to revise for my ... exam.
Im writing a thesis on
Im doing an interesting research into
Education 29


1. Write a short paragraph about your Degree Course, including information

about: duration, subjects, professors, timetable, etc.

2. Choose a university in an English-speaking country, then prepare a brief report

to be presented to the class. You could prepare a fact sheet like this:
(i.e. Harvard) University at a glance:
- Established:
- Coat of arms (if any):
- Motto/Logo:
- Location:
- Faculties:
- Students:
- Naming:
- Other: (i.e. facilities)

3. Translate the sentences below from Italian into English.

1. I corsi del primo semestre sono iniziati alla fine di settembre.

2. Gli studenti del primo anno potranno sostenere gli esami a partire dal prossimo

3. La frequenza non sempre obbligatoria, ma consigliabile seguire i corsi.

4. Prendere appunti durante le lezioni ti aiuta a studiare in modo pi proficuo.

5. Non vivo nel campus, ma viaggio tutti i giorni; impiego unora per raggiungere

6. Che ne dici di andare a pranzo a mensa, dopo la lezione?

7. Hai un giorno libero alluniversit?

8. Mi piace seguire i corsi e organizzare da solo il mio studio.

30 Part 2

4. Choose a verb from the box to complete the text. Put the verb in the correct
take - pass (x 2) - give - learn - do - study - listen - attend - get - sit - become

I did quite well at High School. I didnt have any difficulty 1 and I
regularly 2 my homework. I always 3 my school
exams. Now I 4 at university. I enjoy .5 lectures,
6 to the lecturer and 7 notes. I 8 my
final exams next year. If I 9, I 10 a degree. I would
like to 11 a university teacher and to 12 lectures.

5. Write an email.
You are planning to attend a summer course at a foreign university. Write an email
to the University Student Service asking for information about the course you would
like to attend. Prepare a CV and attach it to your email.

When writing an email, you should specify:


Moreover, respect paragraphing (dont forget to

go to a new line when the idea changes!) and
punctuation, as well as the register (either
formal or informal).
Education 31


Secondary High School Final Certificate

1st Level 1st Level
Master Degree
3 years Degree
1 year+ 180 credits
2-3 years
60 credits+
120-180 credits

2nd Level 2 years 2nd Level

Master Degree 120 credits
1 year+ 1-5 years
60 credits+ 60-300 credits
3 years

In Italy students need a Secondary High School Certificate to join University. They
are free to attend any kind of Degree Course, unless differently stated. There are some
exceptions, of course, like Medicine: you need to pass a very difficult entrance test to
be admitted.
The Italian university system includes first and second-cycle Degree Programmes,
together with first and second-level Specialist Master's Programmes, Research
Doctorates and Specializing Schools.
Students begin their university career with a Laurea Degree which lasts three
years with 180 credits and leads to a basic degree. One university credit corresponds
to 25 hours of study, including individual study, lectures, seminars, and other
formative activities (i.e. stage). Before graduating, students have to produce a short
thesis; each student discusses it on her/his graduation day. It is a very formal event:
students discuss their thesis in front of a Commission of 11 professors wearing a
After getting their Laurea Degree, undergraduate students can either look for
employment or continue their university career with a Magistrale Degree, a more
specialized qualification that consists of two more years of study with other 120
university credits and requires a much more demanding, final thesis. Students are now
graduates (also called post-graduates). This is the so-called 3+2 system.
32 Part 2

Students wishing to deepen specific subjects can enrol in first- or second-level

Specialist Master's Programmes, which usually involve one year of full-time study and
the completion of 60 university credits.
Postgraduate students interested in pursuing doctoral studies may attend a three-
year Research Doctorate (PhD programme). They have to work on a specific topic
carrying out a research at a very advanced level and usually get a salary.

Answer the questions below after carefully looking at the table.

1. Which title do you need to be admitted to university in Italy?
2. How many types of academic titles can be granted to students?
3. How long does the Laurea degree last?
4. How many credits do you need to complete it?
5. What options do students have after getting it?
6. Describe the features of the Magistrale degree.
7. Which options do students have after getting their Magistrale degree?
8. What can students do if they are interested in the academic career?


The Degree Course in ... lasts (for) years.

To complete it, you need credits.
Students can be granted
After getting their degree, students can either or


Now connect the answers you have in order to make a summary of this topic. You can
start like this:
In order to be admitted to university in Italy, you need


Here are a few words selected from the passage above. Look up their phonetic script
on the dictionary; this will help you pronounce them correctly.

word phonetic script meaning

1 attend
2 career
3 degree
4 last
5 lecture
6 obtain
Education 33


Further and higher education


18 GCSE A Level / AS Level

Sixth Form compulsory school leaving age

16 GCSE exam
Modern School



School Secondary
13 School
Junior School
Primary School
Infant School 6

Nursery School

In England and Wales there are county, private and independent schools. Public
schools are private.
When they are three and four, children attend nursery school, which is not
compulsory, while they have to legally attend primary and secondary education which
runs from about 5 years old until they are 18 years old.

The National Curriculum, which sets out the essential knowledge that all children
should acquire, is divided into five Key stages:

Key stage 1 Key stage 2 Key stage 3 Key stage 4 Key Stage 5
Age 5-7 7-11 11-14 14-16 17-18

Core subjects are English, Mathematics, Science, while foundation subjects include
Art and Design, Citizenship, Computing, Design and Technology, Languages,
Geography, History, Music, Physical Education.
All schools are also required to teach Religious Education (RE) at all key stages,
while secondary schools must also provide sex and relationships education.
34 Part 2

At five UK children begin Elementary or Primary Education which is divided into

Infant (from 5 to 7) and Junior (from 8 to 11). At twelve they can choose among:
secondary modern, grammar and comprehensive schools. Other secondary high
schools include technical and vocational schools.
Most students attend comprehensive schools; only a minority attends Modern or
Grammar schools. If they want to attend a grammar school, they have to pass an
entrance test: the eleven plus, that they take while attending the final year at their
Primary school.
At the age of 16 students sit their exams to obtain the so-called General
Certificates of Secondary Education in the subjects they have studied: Chemistry,
English, Physics, Maths, History, Geography, Art, Music, Physical Education, European
Studies, Religious studies, French, etc. The GCSE is a single-subject examination set
and is marked by independent examination boards. Students usually take up to ten
(there is no upper or lower limit) GCSE examinations in different subjects.
If they have obtained a certain number of passes at Secondary High School, they can
continue their school career attending the so-called Sixth Form. It is a prep school for
university studies where students study a few subjects at advanced level and take a
higher level of secondary school examinations known as A-Levels (A: Advanced) or
AS-Levels (AS: Advanced Supplementary).
Passes are graded from A (the top) to E (the lowest pass grade); F stands for fail.
Now they can attend University.
The Sixth form was not compulsory in England and Wales before 2013; however,
university entrance normally requires at least three A-level qualifications, and
sometimes one AS-level.
Students usually select three to four subjects from the GCSEs they have just taken.
The marks attained in both sets of exams are converted into UCAS1 points, which must
meet the offer made by the students chosen university.
Education in Scotland differs from the system used elsewhere in the UK. Basically,
there are two systems: one covering England, Wales, or Northern Ireland and one
covering Scotland. The two education systems have different emphases. English, Welsh
and Northern Irish students tend to sit a small number of more advanced
examinations and Scottish students tend to sit a larger number of less advanced


Higher education is provided by universities and other institutions that award

academic titles, such as university colleges, and liberal arts colleges. It includes both
the teaching and the research activities of universities, and within the realm of
teaching, it includes both the undergraduate and the graduate (or postgraduate)

UCAS stands for Universities and Colleges Admissions Service.
Education 35

Degrees are divided into three levels:

1. Undergraduate: students have to attend courses for three years (six years for
medicine, and veterinary science) to obtain the academic title called B.A. (Bachelor
of Art) or B.Sc. (Bachelor of Science), with a final exam.

2. Postgraduate is a higher academic title called Master of Art (M.A.) or Master of

Science (M.Sc.) after one further year of attendance and study. You have to
produce an original paper in the form of a thesis on some subject.

3. Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.): it is granted to graduate students who carry out

research work for at least three years. They are usually paid for that work and can
become academics.


1. How is the British education system structured?

2. How long does compulsory education last?
3. Is nursery school obligatory?
4. What is the difference between public and state-funded schools?
5. What is the length of each educational stage?
6. What is the eleven plus?
7. What are the most popular types of Secondary High Schools?
8. When do the most important assessments occur?
9. What can students do after taking their GCSEs?
10. What is the sixth form?
11. What are students required to do if they decide to attend college or university?
12. Is the Scottish education system the same as the one used elsewhere in the UK?
13. Who provides higher education?
14. How many types of university titles can be granted to students?

In-depth study on at least one of these areas:

Primary Education, Secondary education, Grammar schools, Eleven-plus exam, the
National Curriculum, Programmes of study and attainment targets, Sixth form, fees,
students loans, Undergraduate, Postgraduate and Doctorate levels.
36 Part 2


8 25
7 Ph.D. (Doctorate of Philosophy) 24
6 23

5 M.A./M.Sc. in University 22 graduate

4 21
3 B.A. Degree 20 undergraduate
in four-year
Associate 2 Junior or College 19
Degree 1 Community College 18

S.A.T. (Scholastic Assessment Test)

12th 17 secondary
Secondary education
11 th
High Combined 16
High School Junior &
10 School 15
9 Junior High 14
8th High School 13
7 th School 12
6 th
Combined 11
5 th Primary 10 primary
& Junior education
4th High Primary Primary 9
3rd School education education 8
2 7
1 6
8+4 6+3+3 6+6
grade age

Kindergarten 4

In the USA there are private and public schools.

Children aged three, four, and five attend the Kindergarten; at the age of 6 they start
Primary education, followed by secondary education and university.
There are three main systems, according to the place where you live, or the school
you choose to attend:
a. the system called 6 plus 3 plus 3: there are six years of primary education, 3 years
of junior and 3 years of senior high schools;
b. the system called 6 plus 6: there are six years of primary education and six years
of combined Junior and Senior high school;
Education 37

c. the system called 8 plus 4, with 8 years of combined primary and junior high
school and 4 years of secondary high school.

The total number of grades is 12 and not all the schools offer the 12 grades.
During their last year of high school students sit the S.A.T. (Scholastic Assessment
Test)2 if they want to attend a college or university. There are private and state colleges
and universities.
Foreign languages, which used to be taught at high schools only, are now being
introduced during the last few years of elementary school in some areas (although in
some cities, state schools dont offer any foreign language teaching). Elementary
students are usually given homework; however, the workload is lighter than in many
countries. The workload increases with higher grades.
Secondary school students must take certain core curriculum courses for a
prescribed number of years or terms, as determined by each state. These generally
include English, Mathematics, General Science, Health, Physical Education and Social
Studies or Social Sciences (which may include American History and Government,
Geography, World History and Social Problems).
In addition to mandatory subjects, students choose electives (optional subjects),
which supplement their future education and career plans. Electives usually comprise
around half of a students work in grades 9 to 12. Students concentrate on four
subjects each quarter and are seldom pushed beyond their capability or capacity for


You can attend a Junior or Community College for two years to obtain an
Associate degree. If you want, you can continue your studies at a four-year college to
obtain a Bachelor of Art Degree (B.A.) or Bachelor of Science Degree (B.Sc.). At this
stage you are an undergraduate.
After that you can move to the second level degree now you are a graduate and
obtain a Master of Science (M.Sc.) or a Master of Art (M.A.) at a University; it lasts one
Then, if you wish to continue your studies, you can attend a course to become a
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.); it lasts three years.
Students attending a high school or a college are called as follows:
- a 1st-year student (or attending Grade 9 at a High School) is called freshman;
- a 2nd- year student (or attending Grade 10 at a High School) is called sophomore;
- a 3rd-year student (or attending Grade 11 at a High School) is called Junior;
- a 4th-year student (or attending Grade 12 at a High School) is called Senior.

The S.A.T. is a standardized test for college admissions in the United States. Since its
introduction in 1901, its name and scoring have changed several times. In 2005, the test was
renamed as S.A.T. Reasoning Test with possible scores from 600 to 2,400 combining test
results from three 800-point sections (Maths, critical reading, and writing), along with other
subsections scored separately.
38 Part 2

1. When does compulsory education start for American students?
2. How is it structured?
3. How long does it last?
4. What is the school leaving age in the USA?
5. What is the S.A.T.?
6. Which possibilities are offered to students who wish to go on studying?
7. What is the Community College and which academic title does it award?
8. How are students referred to at university?
9. How many meanings does the word grade have when referred to education?

What makes a university top-ranked?

Check these websites to get info about some first-rate world universities:
(top 10 world universities according to the QS World Universities 2013/14 rankings) MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Harvard University University of Cambridge UCL (University College London) Imperial College London University of Oxford Stanford University Yale University University of Chicago California Institute of Technology (Caltech) Princeton University

The following words are frequently used in the academic
world. Match each term with its corresponding Italian
1. attendance a. verbale desame
2. exam form b. mancare alle lezioni
3. exam report sheet c. prenotarsi
4. exam results transcript d. firmare
5. notice-board e. statino
6. university credit f. libretto degli esami
7. to miss classes g. piano di studi
8. to register h. frequenza
9. to sign i. bacheca
10. study plan j. credito formativo universitario

Now write four sentences using some of the words above.

Education 39



Nouns Verbs Adjectives Phrases

assistant accept absent-minded academic transcript

atmosphere add acceptable better late than never
campus answer active Can I ask a question?
canteen apologize beneficial cum laude
commuter ask bored/boring every day
coupons assess bright every other day
credit attend brilliant every Tuesday
dean bring cheap exam form
degree carry convincing graduation day
department commute costly I guess/believe ...
exam copy cute in charge
dormitory debate demanding matriculation number
fees discuss distinguished mock exam
floor disturb educated on my own
form enrol efficient on the first floor
freshman evaluate extensive on/in time
grade examine extrovert on Thursdays
graduation explain first once a week
hall fail fourth placement test
junior feel friendly Shall we ...?
lecture graduate intelligent Sorry for being late!
lecture-room grant involved the last but one
lecturer greet involving three times a week
level inform large to ask for explanation
mark join modern to attend classes/lectures
master listen motivating to be good at doing sth
mentor locate motivated to be granted a scholarship
professor meet new to be interested in
rector need old to be punctual for classes
refectory participate professional to carry out a research
registration pass punctual to graduate
relationship pay relaxed to make progress
research read relaxing to pay attention
scholarship refuse reserved to practise doing sth
senior register resilient to revise for an exam
sophomore revise second to study abroad
subject sit serious to take notes
thesis speak smart to volunteer to do sth
timetable take strict twice a week
tutoring watch third with honours
university write young Youre welcome!

The world of work



1. Imagine you have a job interview. Here are a few typical questions. Prepare
suitable answers, then practice the dialogue with a partner.
~ Tell me about yourself.
(You should give an overall impression of who you are. Research the company to
get an idea of the skills and experience they're looking for, and try to relate who
you are, your education and your work experience to show that you would be a
great candidate for the position.)
~ What are/were your main responsibilities in your current/last job?
(If you have any work experience, be specific about what you are doing/did in
your current/previous job. Try to relate these responsibilities to the job you are
being interviewed for.)
~ What is your biggest accomplishment?
(The example given must relate to the job you have applied for.)
~ What are your greatest strengths/weaknesses? (Check Part 1, p.25)

~ Why do you want to work for this company?

(You should be positive about your reasons. It is worth researching the
organisation and relating what they offer to your long-term ambitions.)
~ Why do you want to leave your current job?/Why did you leave your last job?
(Be careful not to say anything bad about your previous employers. Think about
a positive reason for leaving.)
~ When can you start?
(Possible answer: I need to give weeks notice.)
~ Do you have any questions?
(you can prepare several questions before the interview. You might ask about
career/development/training opportunities, etc.)

42 Part 3

2. Here are some extra questions an employer might ask you at a job interview.
Read them and think about your replies.
a. Do you prefer working alone or in a group?
b. Do you believe your previous knowledge or experience can help you to get this
job? If so, how?
c. Are you willing to stay away from home for work?
d. How do you feel about working long hours and at weekends too?
e. What do you think are your best qualities?
f. Are you good at working under pressure?
g. What kind of people do you find most difficult to work with?
h. What would you rather avoid doing in your job? Why?

2. Complete the following dialogue between James Brown, a student, and Mr

Evans, director of a press agency. Use the lexicon given.

Yes, I read your ad in a recent issue of The New York Times. Good morning.
Yes, here it is. Nice to meet you. Thank you very much. Goodbye. I studied
journalism at the Berkeley School of Journalism and graduated there five years
ago. from Manchester.

JAMES Good morning.
MR EVANS Nice to meet you too. So youre
JAMES Im James Brown,
MR EVANS So you have applied for the post of editor.
MR EVANS What can you tell me about your education?
MR EVANS Well, this seems to be a good starting point. Do you have your
Curriculum Vitae?
MR EVANS Ill read it carefully and Ill let you know something as soon as
MR EVANS Goodbye.


When writing your CV in English, use an English model; dont

translate from Italian! You can find a sample Europass CV model in
English online here:
The world of work 43


When you apply for a job, you need to send a CV and might also need to write a
covering letter of explanation.
Imagine you are applying for one of these jobs:
1. an assistant manager
2. an accountant
3. an engineer

3. Write a covering letter to accompany your CV. Use the model provided below.

Sophie Bright
56 Rose Avenue
San Francisco, 94101, CA

September 16, 2016

Charles Saunders
Personnel Manager
Photo Studios, Inc.
435 Park Lane
New York, NY 10022

Dear Mr. Saunders,

I am responding to your advertisement for an assistant photographer. I am very interested
in this position you are offering, as I have worked in this field for five years.
I am enclosing my CV, where you will find detailed information about where I developed my
skills and abilities.
I would appreciate the opportunity to meet you for a personal interview at your
Sophie Bright


FIRST PARAGRAPH: State the job you are applying for.
Where you found out about it (advert in a newspaper or any
other advertising source).
When you are available to start work.

SECOND PARAGRAPH: Why you are interested in that type of work

Why the company attracts you.

THIRD PARAGRAPH: Summarise your strengths and how they might be an

advantage to the organisation.
Relate your skills to the competences required in the job.

FOURTH PARAGRAPH: Mention any dates that you won't be available for interview
Thank the employer and say you look forward to hearing
from them soon.
44 Part 3


~ Whats your ideal job?

~ Are you looking for a job? If not, why? If yes, how?
a. Through friends and relatives?
b. Answering advertisements?
c. Sending direct, unsolicited applications?
~ Where would you like to work?
a. In your town/village/city? Why?
b. Anywhere in Italy and/or abroad? Why?
c. Have you already identified the occupational sector, job/position?

~ Here are some positions:

administrative assistant accounts manager
bank clerk cashier
company manager chief accountant
chief executive officer city engineer
clerical worker computer hardware engineer
computer software engineer database administrator
energy engineer executive worker
exhibition organizer general manager
import/export manager inspector
Internet and intranet designer market researcher
marketing expert network engineer
network planner network technician
production manager professional worker
project manager repair or craft worker
sales assistant sales representative
secretary service worker
supervisor of construction site supervisor of transportation
system test engineer technician
telecommunications designer telecommunications engineer

Can you form jobs from these verbs?

a. administrate administrator k. paint

b. buy l. plan
c. control m. play
d. design n. research
e. drive o. sing
f. educate p. teach
g. employ q. train
h. manage r. work
i. operate s. write
j. organize
The world of work 45


The world of work

Job: + challenging/demanding/rewarding /stimulating

to start work in a few days
to work hard

Wage: good/low/bad/high wage

to get a paid employment
to get a well-paid job
to earn good money
to make a living from
to make money
to raise money
pocket money

Skills: communication /organizational skills

time management
to be skilled/unskilled
to be able to operate fax, scanner and photocopier
to get skills for your life and work

employee (impiegato)
employer (datore di lavoro)
unemployed (disoccupato)

charity (beneficenza; associazione di volontariato)

a voluntary work/volunteer work
to do volunteer work
saving up
shift (turno)
working hours

to be fired to be hired
to do a work for personal enjoyment and
to have a lot of responsibilities
to increase self-confidence

to apply for a job

to go to a job agency and see a job counselor
to fill out an application form
to look for a job
to look for Help wanted signs
to look in the newspaper in the classified ad section
46 Part 3


The growth of English in university classes

If you search for a graduate business program on the net in English, you will find
many programs around the world. After finishing his undergraduate studies in Italy,
Mario Rossi decided to enroll in a business school near Frankfurt where many courses
are taught in English. The aim of attending this program was twofold: it meant not
only a focus on business but also experiencing an international mix of students and
the chance to improve his English.
Also many universities in Italy are planning to do this. They know that English is the
language of global economy and students attending these courses get prepared to
spend their English in the global job market. In these classes, students experience
using English as their common language, a skill they need and will use no matter
where they work later on.

a. How do you consider your competence in English? (poor-fair-good-excellent)

b. What do you do to improve your English?

c. Which strategies do you consider more helpful to improve your English? Do you
use them?


When applying for a job, you should also refer to your foreign
language skills. The Europass Language Passport allows you
to describe and detail your language skills and competences.
It is a self-assessment document where you can detail your
language proficiency regardless of whether that proficiency
was attained formally or informally.
The Europass Language Passport uses the six European levels of the Common
European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL) to record the level of
language proficiency in a standardised format.3
Check these links to get a template, then prepare you own Language Passport:


Basic user, A1, Breakthrough or Beginner and A2, Waystage or Elementary; Independent user,
B1, Threshold or Intermediate and B2, Vantage or Upper intermediate; Proficient User, C1,
Effective Operational Proficiency or advanced and C2, Mastery or Proficiency.
The world of work 47


Answer these questions.

1. What do you think about volunteer work?

2. Have you ever done something for charity?
3. Which options are there in your place for people who want to do volunteer work?
i.e. You can help disabled people/the homeless; volunteer in a hospital/senior
citizen homes/at a charitable organization; deliver food and clothes to people in
need; give extra teaching to children, etc.
4. What do you think people need to be successful?
i.e. You have to be determined/lucky;
have a lot of money/have rich parents
work hard
get a good education
5. Do you believe that speaking good English can help you find a job? How?
6. What do you want to be when you leave school/university?
i.e. I want to be - Id like to be a/an
7. What is your ideal job?
8. What do you have to do to make this dream come true?
9. What are you doing now to make it come true?
10. Which would you choose: a high-paying job with long hours that would give you
little time with family or a lower-paying job with shorter hours that would give
you more time with family and friends?
11. Is it hard or easy for young people to find a job in Italy?
12. Do you have a job?
13. What do you think are good jobs for the young? What are bad jobs? Why?
14. What kind of jobs do you think will be the most important in the next ten years?

To do the donkey work.
Sgobbare; fare la parte peggiore di un lavoro.
Shes had a nose job!
Si rifatta il naso.
To make the best of a bad job.
Fare buon viso a cattiva sorte.
There is no such thing as a free lunch!
Nessuno fa qualcosa per niente!

The world & me


here are many different reasons
why people travel. Some travel
for work; some travel for their
holidays all over the world; some have
to travel for health problems, having to
undergo difficult surgery or other
operations. Emigration and immigration
too imply travelling, moving from ones
own country to another, often in
difficult if not desperate conditions.
There are also business holidays: if you have a travel agency, for example, you have
to visit the places where you are sending your customers.
Travelling for work is quite common nowadays, for instance when you visit your
prospective clients abroad, when you visit factories to meet managers and CEOs, to
organize international meetings, to teach as a visiting professor for one semester or
more at a foreign university.
People travel the world depending on their interests, expectations, the amount of
money they want (or can afford) to spend, the climate and so on.
Many travel to exotic places during the whole year; others visit places in their own
country during their summer or winter holidays; some people prefer to visit cities of
art, and so on.
Sometimes people prefer choosing special accommodations, like the Ice Hotel in
Canada (a big igloo where everything is made from snow and ice and all drinks in the
local bar are served in glasses made of ice) or the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, UAE, for its
sail-shaped silhouette, its luxurious suites overlooking the Arabian Gulf and its
stunning facilities.
You can travel using various means of transport, such as ship, train, plane, car or

50 Part 4

1. Fill in this mind map with words from the text and/or from your own experience
with travelling.

accommodation why?


old and modern means of

journeys transport
my trips

2. Refer to your personal experience. Use these prompts to talk about your travels.
- Have you ever been abroad? - What did you do during the day?
- What is your memorable holiday? - What was the weather like?
- Where/When did you go? - What did you buy?
- Who did you go with? - Where are you going on holiday?
- How did you go there? - How long are you staying?
- How long did you stay there? - When are you leaving?
- Where did you stay? - Where are you staying?
- Was it expensive/cheap? - How are you getting there?
- Do you recommend it? Why/Why not? - What is your ideal holiday?

3. Imagine you visited/are visiting one of the places in these pictures. Choose a
destination and describe your travel using the language suggested in this

Destination 1: Maldives

Destination 2: the USA & Mexico

The world & me 51

4. WRITING TASK: Describing a holiday

Organize your text
First paragraph: where you want to go
Second paragraph: what you will see and do
Third paragraph: the return journey
Verb tenses to use: will for predictions - going to for intentions


a coach tour
a single/return ticket
When my ship comes home. =
an expensive bus/taxi/train fare
Quando far fortuna.
boarding card
Quando i miei sogni si avvereranno.
camp/campsite (campeggio)
To travel Italy from end to end! =
camping (campeggiare) Percorrere lItalia da un capo allaltro!
ferry (traghetto) All the roads lead to Rome! =
flight Tutte le strade portano a Roma.
in two days time (tra due giorni)
luggage (bagaglio)
at the weekend
the day after tomorrow
the week after next (tra due settimane)
to book/reserve (prenotare) a hotel room/a plane ticket/ a train seat in advance
to enjoy a holiday at the seaside/in the mountains/abroad
to escape from life in the cities
to fill the car up (with petrol)
to fly to (place)
to go sightseeing
to go through customs (dogana) at the airport
to go/be on holiday
to hire (noleggiare) a car
to make a reservation
to pack (preparare i bagagli)
to set off (partire)
52 Part 4


1. Answer the following questions and organize them in a cohesive and coherent
a. Do you often have free time?
b. What do you do in your leisure time?
c. How do you usually spend it? (at home/outside/alone/with friends)
d. How much do you spend each week on your free time?
e. Who gives you pocket money for your free time?
f. Do you practice any sport? Which one? Where? (i.e. football ground, tennis court)
g. Whats your favourite food/drink?
h. Do you drink alcohol?
i. Do you ever read in your free time?
j. What do you usually read? Any newspapers? Books? What kind of books?
k. Do you surf the net? What for?
l. Do you like watching TV? Which programs?
m. Do you listen to the radio? How long?
n. What else do you do? Text messages? Do crosswords? Help your younger
brother/sister with his/her homework?
o. Any voluntary job?
p. Do you ever go to the cinema/theatre to watch films/concerts, other? (express
preferences, i.e. for films: adventure, romantic, animated, fantasy, action,
western, thriller, science-fiction).

really/quite/rather/very/a little/a bit exciting, entertaining, funny, moving, silly,
fascinating, interesting, romantic, great, scary, boring, dull, predictable, involving

2. You are at the university coffee-bar with three students: Amir from Turkey,
Magda from Spain, Shamir from India. Over a nice coffee, you are talking about
free time in everyones place of origin. Write the dialogue.

3. Write a short report of a film/book referring to the plot, main characters, setting,
main theme/s, your reaction to it.

To express a past action that is finished, use the Past Simple:
Ex.: I watched an amusing film last night.
To express an action that happened at an earlier time in the past, before the
main time in the past, use the Past Perfect:
Ex.: I had watched a video for two hours before you came.
To refer to a state or action in progress at a given time in the past, use the Past
Continuous form:
Ex.: I had been watching that video for two hours, when I arrived there.
The world & me 53

Expressing preferences
In my free time I like/love/prefer shopping.
I prefer playing music to listening to it; in fact I play the ... in my free time.
He prefers romantic novels to detective stories.
They prefer going to the cinema to watching DVDs; obviously its more expensive!
What/Who do you prefer?
Do you prefer rock concerts or classic concerts? A painter or a poet?
Theyd rather read ... than see ...
Id rather play... than watch ...
What are you going to do ... when you ...?
Whats your favourite type of entertainment? Why?
What film/book have you seen/read recently?
Which do you prefer? What would you rather do?
- playing sports or watching them?
- reading a book or seeing a film version of it?
- small groups of friends or big parties?
- rock music or classical concerts?
- watching action films or horror films?

Films and concerts

When did you last go to the cinema?
What film did you see?
What was it about?
Who was in it?
Would you recommend it?
What is your favourite type of film?
Do you prefer watching films on TV or at the
What is your favourite TV programme?
How much TV do you watch every day?
What type of concert do you enjoy most?
When did you last see a concert?
Where was it?
Who was singing?
What type of music was played?
What were the best and the worst parts of the concert?
Would you recommend it? Why? Why not?
54 Part 4


a. Look up in the dictionary the definition of art.
b. Do you agree with it? Why/Why not?
c. What is, in your opinion, the purpose of art?
d. What makes an object a work of art?
e. What affects the standards of art?
f. Is there an important work of art/monument in the place where you live?
g. Describe it in a few sentences.
h. Are there any art galleries/museums/theatres in your city/hometown/village?
i. Do you ever go to exhibitions?
j. Do you have a favourite artist?
k. What is your favourite painting/sculpture? Why is it so special to you?

1. Complete the questions with a suitable question word, then refer to a painting
you like and answer them.
a. is the title of this painting? ..
b. painted it? ..
c. was it painted? ..
d. is it kept? ..
e. does it show? ..
f. materials have been used? ..
g. colours does it contain? ..
h. style is this painting in? ..


art gallery composition installation picture
artist curator landscape portrait
background draw line (curvy, thick, ) sculpture
brush drawing middleground seascape
brushstroke easel paint shades
canvas engraving painting sketch
carve exhibition palette solo exhibition
chiaroscuro fine arts performance art still life
clay foreground perspective watercolour

2. Fill in the following sentences with a word from the list above.
1. Shes very good at drawing; I asked her to make my
2. Were going to an of Monets paintings next weeks.
3. Still Life with Fruit is a famous by Caravaggio.
4. I love art, so Im studying after High School.
5. Picasso made not only paintings, but also and
6. Many Cubist works have small used to create vibrations of light.
The world & me 55

3. Write 5 sentences using some of these words.


4. Fill the list of jobs below with a suitable word from those suggested:
art designer officer
architect curator graphic personnel
director decorator illustrator photographer
historian exhibitions interior publicity
artist fashion museum curator sculptor

5. Complete the word diagram.

Noun Adjective Verb Job


6. Read this text and fill the gaps with suitable words from the box below.
advertisements - billboards - technologies - magazines - viewers - consumerism
- artworks - commercial - everyday - photographs - appealing - art - media -
reactions - practice - formal - common - famous - repetition

An art movement: POP ART

op Art was an art movement born in the late 1950s and 1960s that reflected
1 life and 2 objects. Indeed, Pop artists blurred the
line between fine art and 3 art, moving away from Abstract
Expressionism quite widespread in the 50s.
While the Abstract Expressionists evoked emotions, feelings and ideas through
4 elements such as line, colour, shape, form and texture, Pop artists used
common images from everyday culture as their sources including 5,
consumer goods, celebrities, 6 and comic strips. The name Pop actually
derives from the adjective popular.
Pop artists drew inspiration from commercial designs and thus used bold, flat colours
and hard edge compositions like those found in 7, murals, magazines,
newspapers. They reflected the 60s culture by using new materials in their
56 Part 4

8, including acrylic paints, plastics, photographs, fluorescent and

metallic colours. They also used new 9 and methods, such as mass
production, fabrication, photography, printing, serials.
The 10 to Pop Art were manifold: many 11 found it
12, while others felt it made fun of common people and their lives. Some
people did not share Pop Artists decision to paint cheap, everyday objects, as they
believed that the function of art was to support and represent cultures most valuable
Andy Warhol was one of the most 13 Pop Artists. Part of his artistic
14 was using new technologies and new ways of making art including
photographic silk-screening, 15, mass production, collaboration and
media events.
Warhol appropriated images from 16, newspapers, and press photos of
the most popular people of his time.
He used the repetition of 17 events to critique and reframe cultural ideas
through his art. He mirrored the changes introduced by mass 18 in
society, basically consisting in a preference for consuming material goods as well as
the love for the new myths created by mass-media.
Warhol took common everyday items and gave them importance as 19.
He raised questions about the nature of art: what makes one work of art better than

7. Andy Warhol once said:

Whats great about this country is that America started the tradition where the
richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. You can be
watching TV and see Coca-Cola and you can know that the President drinks Coke, Liz
Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke too. A Coke is a Coke and no
amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is
drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good. Liz Taylor knows it,
the President knows it, the bum knows it, and you know it.

What do you think about this statement? Whats your personal view of

8. Imagine you work as an advertiser. You have to invent a slogan for a consumer
good like Coke. How would you persuade people to buy it? What would you
think of?
The world & me 57

9. Fill in this text with appropriate tenses of the verbs in brackets.

The history of Coca-Cola.
The origins of Coca-Cola 1 (go back) to 1886, when Dr. John
Pemberton, a pharmacist in Atlanta, Georgia, 2 (invent) the
formula for Coca-Cola syrup. So, it was originally 3 (intend) as a
Later on Willis Venables 4 (mix) the syrup with carbonated
water at his soda fountain. Asa Chandler, another pharmacist,
(buy) the rights to the syrup. Coca-Cola 6 (begin)

to be bottled in 1894.
What is special about Coca-Cola is also its shape. It was 7 (invent) in
1915 by Alex Samuelson, a Swedish engineer who 8 (work) for the Root
Glass Company of Terre Haute, Indiana. The idea 9 (derive) from a cocoa
bean and the bottle was first 10 (make) of German green glass. It was
11 (slim) down for production and 12 (patent).
Today Coca-Cola is 13 (sell) in stores, restaurants, and vending machines
in more than 200 countries not only in glass bottles, but also in plastic bottles and
cans. The hand-written word Coca-Cola along with the printed word Coke is
still 14 (write) on cans and plastic bottles as it first 15
(appear) on the glass bottles in 1915.

10. Complete these sentences with a suitable preposition.

a. The word Coca-Cola first appeared glass bottles 1915.
b. The formula the Coca-Cola syrup was invented Dr. Pemberton
c. Alex Samuelson invented the famous shape the Coca-Cola glass bottle.
d. The first bottle was made green German glass.
e. Asa Chandler mixed Coca-Cola his soda fountain.
f. Today Coke is sold cans and plastic or glass bottles.


Choose appropriate dates and numbers from the box to complete the Coca-Cola fun
50 1931 10,450 1991 the second 1985

~ In Coca-Cola became the first soft drink ever in space.

~ There are nearly soft drinks from Coca-Cola consumed every second of
every day including Diet Coke, Fanta and Sprite.
~ Coca-Cola is most widely understood term in the world after OK.
~ The Coca-Cola Facebook page has over million fans and continues to grow.
~ In Santa Claus, created by Haddon Sunblom, first appeared in advertising.
~ In Coca-Cola launched the first drinks bottle containing recycled materials.
58 Part 4


The Guggenheim Museum

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is a
museum of contemporary and modern art
located in New York City, USA.
It is the permanent home to a renowned
collection of Impressionist, Post-Impressionist,
early Modern and contemporary art and also
features special exhibitions throughout the
Designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, it is
one of the 20th centurys most important
architectural landmarks.
The museum opened on October 21 , 1959; from 2005 to 2008 it underwent an
extensive renovation.

11. Make short dialogues by using the information provided below.

Entrance to the Building
Adults $18
Students and Seniors (65 years +) with valid ID $15
Children under 12 Free
Members Free


Sunday 10 am5:45 pm*

Monday 10 am5:45 pm*

Tuesday 10 am5:45 pm*

Wednesday 10 am5:45 pm*

Thursday Closed

Friday 10 am5:45 pm*

Saturday 10 am7:45 pm*

Pay what you wish 5:457:45 pm**

* last ticket issued at 5:15 pm

** last ticket issued at 7:15 pm

Self-guided audio tours are included in the price of admission.

Closed: Thursdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas Day

The world & me 59

12. You are in Park Avenue (red circle on the map) and want to go to the
Guggenheim Museum. Ask a passer-by for directions.

You: A
Passer-by: B

A: ..................................
B: ..................................
A: ..................................
B: ..................................
A: ..................................
B: ..................................


Match the directions and expressions below with their Italian equivalent.
1. Turn right/left. a. Attraversa la strada.
2. Go straight ahead. b. attraversamento pedonale
3. at the traffic lights c. Prosegui lungo Ford Avenue.
4. at the crossroads d. in King Street.
5. at the roundabout e. davanti a te sulla destra.
6. pedestrian crossing f. al semaforo
7. Cross the road. g. alla rotonda
8. Its on King Street. h. Gira a destra/sinistra.
9. Go along Ford Avenue. i. allincrocio
10. Go past the railway station. j. Vai dritto.
11. Its in front of you on your right. k. Supera la stazione ferroviaria.
60 Part 4


1. How much do you know about Italy, the UK and the USA? Fill in the table below!

Full name
Form of government
Head of State
Head of government
Flag (name)
National Anthem
Capital city
Total population
Highest mountain
Longest river
Largest lake
Most populous cities

2. Describe the U.K. and the U.S.A. in general and/or selected aspects of your


In the USA there is a federal presidential

republic. The Presidential elections in the United
States are held every four years.
The legislative branch makes the laws. It is
represented by Congress, divided into the Senate
and the House of Representatives. The former is
made up of 100 members, two for each State,
regardless of size, while the latter is made up of 435
members (the number from each state is based on
its population). Each state elects its Senators and Representatives, who serve,
respectively, a six-year term and a two-year term. Each representative serves the people
of a specific congressional district by introducing bills and serving on committees,
among other duties. As to the Constitution, the U.S. House of Representatives makes
and passes federal laws.
There are two main political parties, the Republicans and the Democrats, to which
Senators and Representatives belong.
The world & me 61

The executive branch makes the laws official and is responsible for making
decisions which will benefit the country and the people. The executive power is
exercised by the President, who serves a two-year term and cannot serve more than
two 4-year terms. He/She acts as Head of State and Head of Government, appointing
cabinet members and acting as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
The Cabinet includes the Vice-President and 15 members: the Secretary of State; the
Secretary of Defence; the Secretary of Education, and so forth.


The United Kingdom is governed by a

constitutional monarchy, in which the
monarch is the head of state and the Prime
Minister is the head of government.
It is said that: The Queen reigns but does not
rule. This means that although the monarch is
the head of State, s/he has no real power. The
Queen/King is also Head of the Armed Forces
and the Church of England.
In the UK the legislative power is exercised by the Parliament, divided into two
~ the House of Lords with about 1,000 Members, including Lords Temporal the
majority that are the hereditary peers; Lords Spiritual, also called Spiritual Peers
(who are 26 Bishops of the established Church of England) and a small number of
Life Peers, appointed by the Queen/King;
~ the House of Commons, that has a little less than 650 members, called MPs
(Members of Parliament) elected by universal suffrage every five years.
The Lord Chancellor presides over the House of Lords, while the Speaker presides
over the House of Commons.
General elections are held every five years in England.
62 Part 4

The UK has many political parties, the main three being Labour (on the left),
Conservative (on the right) and Liberal Democrat (in the middle). These three work in
both the House of Lords and the House of Commons.
As to the executive branch, the Head of government in the UK is the Prime
Minister, who serves a maximum term of 5 years, although there is no limit to the
number of terms s/he can serve. The Prime Minister is not elected by people, but s/he
is the leader of the party that has a majority in Parliament. S/He appoints the 22
Cabinet ministers, who are each responsible for a department of government (i.e.
education, health, defence, etc.)


Italy is a parliamentary republic. The Italian

Political System is based on the Constitution
drawn up in 1948.
Power is divided among the executive, the
legislative and judicial branches.
The President of the Republic is the Head of
State and represents national unity. He is elected
by the two Chambers of Parliament in joint
session and regional representatives for a seven-year term at the end of which he can
be re-elected. He appoints the Prime Minister; he can veto bills and send them to
Parliament for a new inspection. He must be a native-born Italian citizen at least 50
years old.
The Council of Ministers is headed by a Prime Minister, appointed by the President
on the basis of ability to form a government with parliamentary support. Political
coalitions and parties are sometimes necessary to set up a parliamentary majority.
The executive power is exercised by the government under the direction of the
Prime Minister, also called President of the Council of the Ministers. He is appointed by
the President of the Republic and chooses his ministers. The government must be
supported by a parliamentary majority.
The legislative power is exercised by Parliament, which consists of two houses,
whose members are elected directly by the people: the Chamber of Deputies, which
has 630 members, elected by all citizens aged at least 18 (only citizens of at least 25
can be elected) and the Senate of the Republic, comprising 315 members (aged at least
40) elected by all citizens aged 25 or over, and a small number of senators for life,
some of whom are former Presidents. All bills must be passed by both Houses before
being turned into laws.
The magistrature is independent of executive and legislative powers and is
governed by its own Supreme Law Council.
Italy has a multiparty political system with the main parties being: the Democratic
Party, Forza Italia (Go Italy), People of Freedom, Populars for Italy, Northern League,
Future and Freedom for Italy, Union of Christian and Centre Democrats, Union of the
Centre, Civic Choice, the Five Star Movement.
The world & me 63


Nouns & phrases
alderman health care power
ballot paper House of Representatives preferential vote
bill House of Commons President
bribery House of Lords proportional system
Chamber of Deputies housing province
civil rights infrastructures Queen
civil servant judicial powers region
committee judges remuneration
common justice Labour Party Republic
common law leader Republican Party
Communist Party legal system rewards
congressman/woman legislative powers salary
Conservative Party legislative system Senate
constituency Liberal Party Senator
Constitution loser Social-Democrat Party
convention majority system Socialist Party
corruption Member of Parliament sovereign
councillor Minister taxation
county Ministry technical government
Democratic Party Monarchy term of office
domestic policy Municipality the lower class
election day/s national elections the middle class
elector national legislature the Speaker
equality opinion maker the upper class
executive powers opposition leader Trade Unions
foreign policy opposition parties treaties
form of government party undersecretary
government policy vote
government majority political welfare state
Head of State politics winner

Verbs Adjectives
abolish reject/introduce a bill inherited
reign rig the ballot modern
appoint rule powerful
base serve proportional
canvass set up secret
elect submit the eldest/oldest
head vote the youngest
hold win universal
lose make up widespread
64 Part 4


here are so many things we could do in our daily life to
respect the environment. Indeed, we should make any
possible effort to save energy and avoid over consumption
of goods. For instance, we can switch off appliances at night; use
scrap paper to write notes; grow our own vegetables whenever
we can; reuse plastic carrier bags from the supermarket. These
are only a few hints in the right direction.
There are environmentally-friendly shops that sell bio-degradable washing
products; they also sell products that come from renewable resources. We should
consider that most products can be recycled; buying products (paper, for example)
made from recycled material can help.
Nowadays it has become necessary to separate rubbish according to prescriptions
from municipalities by using the appropriate recycling bins. It is also advisable to
compost food scraps from the kitchen and use it for plants, flowers, vegetables, if
Special types of rubbish (i.e. old household appliances) have to be sent to a secure
landfill site. It is also advisable to reduce the consumption of plastic bottles and other
plastic containers at large. Lets not forget that plastic goods need about 200 years to
be dispersed into the soil!
Even noise can be polluting, so it is advisable to make less noise, being a little
Some basic rules can help you become greener. For instance, respect the laws to
reduce the amount of smog and car fumes in your place, reduce the consumption of
plastic bottles and buy only eco-friendly products.


After carefully reading the text, prepare a mind map summarizing the main ideas in
the text. Add more branches if necessary.



1. Think of your daily life, then reflect and answer these questions:
a. What do you do (refer to your family too, if you want):
- to favour recycling?
- to save energy?
- to protect your environment on the whole?
b. Do you have any more ideas in this direction?
c. Give some advice to people in charge in your Municipality.
The world & me 65

2. Are you helping to save our planet? Tick the things you do. Can you add
anything else to the list?
recycle your rubbish
walk or cycle instead of going by car
turn your stereo/TV off when youre not using it
reuse plastic bags
turn off the lights when theres no one in the room
use recycled paper
belong to an organization that cares for the environment

1. Complete the text with words from the box.

public transport - wind turbines - fly - oil - petrol - fuel - solar panels - recycled rubbish

There wont be much 1 in the future, so people will probably create

electricity with 2 and 3. Due to the scarcity
of 4, people will walk, cycle and use 5 more.
People will still have cars, but theyll probably use 6 made from
7. Moreover, people wont go on holiday much, because itll be
too expensive to 8 as the fuel will cost too much.

2. Complete the sentences with appropriate words.

a. Dont use plates. Its bad for the environment to plastic.
b. Well get our electricity from and .
c. Well separate all our and everything.
d. People will take care not to damage the
e. from cars is causing

3. Write five sentences predicting what will happen to the environment in the
future. Try to use as many words from the Vocabulary section as possible.

4. Translate these sentences into English.

a. In futuro la popolazione mondiale crescer.
b. Nel 2025 il clima sar pi caldo.
c. In futuro il carburante coster di pi.
d. Penso che sar difficile per molte persone cambiare il proprio stile di vita.
e. Se rispettiamo lambiente, avremo un mondo pi pulito.
f. Se avessimo riciclato di pi, non avremmo avuto il problema delle discariche.
66 Part 4


he three main fossil fuels used for electricity
generation - coal, natural gas and oil - when
burned, produce a big quantity of poisonous
They provoke environmental damage, a big waste of
resources and health problems (i.e. lung damage) and so
require extra medical care; adding to this, many days are
lost at work. Both aspects cost a great amount of money,
Pollutants produced by the three main fossil fuels used for electricity generation
are: carbon dioxide; particulates (sooth and ash); sulfur gas; nitrogen oxides; carbon
monoxide; a small amount of mercury; nitrogen oxides; sulfate and nitrate particles.
When sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides in the air combine with water vapour, they
form sulfuric and nitric acids.
Air pollution affects also the health of businesses; acid rain can cause the
disruption of flora animal life, seriously affecting their natural habitats, as well as
crops, plant life, water.
Pollution seriously affects territorial initiatives and economies and reduces tourism
dramatically. Each enterprise should have, among its priorities, a sustainable
environmental policy.
Our quality of life is daily endangered by the greenhouse effect, as the excess of
greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are changing the Earths climate; heat is
increasing (global warming is thought to be a cause for serious concern), ice is melting
on the mountains and at the Poles, and devastating landslides increase in number also
as a consequence of deforestation or because of inadequate protection of territories
and indiscriminate building. Waste is expected to rise if we do not change our habits.
It is not a question of eliminating pollution; it is rather a matter of reducing these
devastating effects on our daily life. We can still survive, notwithstanding landslides,
polluted air, longer periods of drought, dramatic reduction of water, etc., but some
serious measures need to be taken immediately.
This is the right time to face this big challenge: for future generations it is a
question of life or death! We should make any possible effort also to save energy; one
simple suggestion: switching off appliances at night! Fortunately enough, now there is
a greater awareness of the problem and acceptance of the need for action.

What kind of future can you foresee in terms of quality of life?

1. Complete this mind map with ideas from the text. You can add more branches.

pollution types of

. effects
The world & me 67

The environment

Find the Italian equivalent of each word/phrase.

climate change
to damage
to destroy
global warming
landfill sites
ozone layer
public transport
to recycle
recycled rubbish
to reuse
rise in sea level
to run out (of)
to save money (on)
solar panels
to throw away
to waste
waste (n.)
wind farm



SETTING: The lecture-room of an Italian university or a High School classroom. About 20

students. Teacher and students agree that communication is a relevant topic for
everyone to talk and write about. They produce this mind map through a quick
brainstorming; the teacher elicits ideas from students; the teacher or a student keys in
the mind-map and it is shown through the video projector:
vocabulary types of
communication formal
features informal

communication face-to-face
body language

appropriate techniques
in a foreign for effective interaction
language affected by

use reply questions, asking questions

mobile such as: Do you,
e.mail Dont you, Are they,
Why repeating
previous statement
a. Each student writes a sentence about the topic, and, in turns, all dictate their own
sentence to the class; some errors may be corrected during this activity by anyone.
b. Everybody writes those sentences.
c. The teacher writes them on the computer/interactive whiteboard, but s/he doesnt
show them.
d. Dictations finishes and students are asked to rearrange those sentences, trying to
correct mistakes, if any, granting cohesion and coherence to the composition.
e. A volunteer student reads her/his composition.
f. Then s/he goes to the computer/interactive whiteboard and writes it down, showing
it to the whole class.
g. Final class checking of errors, if any left.

70 Part 5

1. Here are the sentences produced by the students. Some words are missing;
choose them from those given below to complete the sentences.
technology - I flew to - social networks - the videophone would be simply great -
could I talk to you - you wont make it! - techniques - false starts -
body language - eye-contact - the right message - a true chatter-box -
can be either formal or informal - letters and emails
JANE I communicate a lot; you know, Im ...........................,1 but I prefer talking
with friends, at home, everywhere.
ROBERT I believe that in communication ...........................2 plays an important role;
sometimes body language and signs carry more meaning than words
FRANK An effective communication means that you use the right words and
structures to vehicle ...........................3 in the right place.
MARIA In face-to-face communication, intonation, pauses, repetitions,
...........................4 are very important.
JASMINE There are different ways to communicate: face-to-face or via ....................5
SIMONE I prefer to communicate via technology; I love chatting through
............................6 The telephone is also important; my mobile is never on
a stand-by; and .........................7! .........................8 helps a lot to understand
each other better.
NORA We communicate also through writing, for example with ...........................9.
Id like to develop a career in journalism or television, maybe working at
a local TV station, just for a start. It would be simply great and my
dream would come true!
HENRY I think that we are nearly losing the art of communicating; I mean that
when we communicate by text or email, we dont really express our
ideas clearly enough.
DENISE If you ask me about the relationship between computer and
communication, I dont hesitate to stress that the computer isolates us
from the rest of the world. Im very positive about that!
ROSA As to how to keep interaction going, well, we have to learn and use
specific ...........................,10 I guess.
TEACHER Communication, both oral and in writing, ...........................11. It means that
we have to use different structures and vocabulary, depending on the
situation. For example, when addressing the Dean of your university,
you have to use formal language such as: Excuse me, Mr. Adams,
...........................12, please?
Instead, when addressing a friend, your language is more direct: Helen,
listen, tomorrow Im leaving very early, at about 7.00. ...........................13! I
know you like sleeping until late on Saturday mornings!
And lets not forget intonation to mean discrimination. For example, the
sentence ...........................14 London last week, with the main stress on I,
means it was I and not another person who flew to London. Instead, if
we put the accent on London, what does it mean? Its easy: it means that
I flew to London and not to Bristol, for instance.

2. Complete the mind-map with additional information.

3. What about you? What is your idea of communication? Prepare an oral/written
Communication 71


~ Do you have a cell phone?

~ Why did you choose your particular cell phone?
~ Do you think that cell phones have become indispensable in modern day life?
~ How do you think cell phones will change in the coming years?
~ Do you think you have good cell phone manners? Can you give any examples?
~ In what places is cell phone usage banned? Do you agree with this?
~ Which of these functions does your cell phone have? Tick as appropriate:
storing contact information
making task or to-do lists.
keeping track of appointments and setting reminders;
using the built-in calculator for simple math;
sending or receiving e-mail;
getting information (news, entertainment, stock quotes) from the Internet;
playing games;
watching TV;
sending text messages;
integrating other devices such as PDAs, MP3 players and GPS receivers.
~ Which functions do you never use?

1. Here are some abbreviations used in mobile phone and email short messages.
Match them to their equivalent. Choose from the following:
See you later - Anyone - Any - Message/s - Weekend - Thanks - Thank you - Love -
People - Noon - Are you ok? - for/four - All the best No one - Please call me -
Thinking of you

Abbreviation Meaning in English Meaning in Italian


Can you think of any more abbreviations?

72 Part 5

2. Can you guess the meaning of these text messages? Write them away!

1. .......................................................
2day I dnt Prof. Smith Im TOY .......................................................
av tIm 2 wd lIk 2 now
CU @ 3 RUOK? 2. .......................................................
CU Mon @ pm in his PCM .......................................................
n%n my ofis 4 a ASAP 3. .......................................................
plAs talk THNQ Luv

Now write out your own text messages!

3. Translate the following text messages into standard English.

a. WRU? Iv been l%kin 4 U!
b. w@zup? RUOK?
c. DNT 4GET 2 b%k htl 4 nxt Wknd!
d. Its L8! GBKM asap

4. Translate these sentences into text messages.

a. I want to see you! Please call me as soon as possible!

b. Dont worry for me! Im happy today!

c. Dont forget to come to my great party at 9 pm my place!

d. See you at the exclusive dinner with school mates at 8.30 pm.

How much time do you spend on the Internet?
I spend a lot of time/too much time on the Internet.
Im addicted to the Internet.
What do you use it for? Why?
Ex.: communication, study, research, entertainment, chatting, etc.
How do you think technology will develop in the future?

to be addicted to the Internet to chat online to friends
to connect to the Internet to play computer games
to send a text to a friend to surf the net
to text a message to be glued to the computer
Communication 73


An online social network is a way of staying in

touch and making new connections. It is much like
your real social network: it includes your friends and
family, work colleagues and acquaintances.
Once you add your friends and family to your social
network you can easily share photos and videos,
send messages, post comments, arrange events,
chat, make recommendations and play games.
To get started using social media you simply sign up
for free to one of the social networking websites and create a profile for yourself. Here
you can enter basic details about yourself and your interests and you can add a photo
Once you are signed up you can search for people you know and add them as friends.
You simply type in their name, click search and when you find the right person you
can send them a friend request, which they can either accept or decline. Other people
can also search for your social networking profile and send you a friend request.

Some of the most popular social networks are:

~ Twitter: this is one of the fastest-growing networks. Basically,

it is a series of short online announcements or tweets. You
follow people you know or in whom youre interested, they
follow you, you exchange brief text-only messages. If you say
something interesting, one of your followers might re-tweet it, which means
repeating it and saying who said it. So, some of their followers might start to follow
you too, and thats how you meet new people. Great for asking quick questions.

~ Facebook: it started in the United States as a way for some college

kids to stay in touch when they had left campus. It was founded in
2004 by Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg and was originally called
thefacebook. It was quickly successful on campus and expanded
beyond Harvard into other Ivy League schools.
With the phenomenon growing in popularity, Zuckerberg asked two other students,
Duston Moskovitz and Chris Hughes, for help. Within months, thefacebook became
a nationwide college networking website. Zuckerberg and Moskovitz left Harvard to
run thefacebook full time shortly after taking the site national.
In August of 2005, thefacebook was renamed Facebook, and the domain was
purchased for a reported $200,000 US Dollars (USD). At that time, it was only
available to schools, universities, organizations, and companies within English
speaking countries, but it has since expanded to include anyone, thus becoming one
of the largest social networks in the world.
With Facebook, unlike Twitter, you get a page on the web and can use this to upload
pictures, videos, play games, or to post updates. You can use it to catch up with old
friends, make new ones, share an interest with a group of people or share your
photos with someone the other side of the world. There are also Facebook
74 Part 5

applications for reviewing books, reviewing films, areas for private messages and
for more open discussions.

~ LinkedIn: this is a network mostly used for business to contact and keep in touch
with work colleagues. You may only contact people who are a friend of a friend, or a
friend of a friend of a friend, and so on.

~ Flickr: it is less used to socialise, but you can upload and share any pictures you
want others to see.

~ Google+: it lets you put all your acquaintances in separate circles, so you can post
something to your best friends that you might not want sent to your work
colleagues. At the moment, its not as popular as Facebook and Twitter.

Write an essay about the pros and cons of the huge spread of social networks
(about 150-200 words). Write about:
- how people communicate today;
- the advantages of social networks compared to other forms of communication;
- the disadvantages of social networks;
- how you see the future of communication.

Match these internet-related words with their meaning.

1. app a. a tablet made by Apple

2. bandwith b. a person who looks after a website
3. bookmark c. to put (a message) on interactive internet
4. cache d. a type of socket on a computer
5. to crash e. to connect
6. to debug f. a portable computer with a touch screen
7. filetype g. to compress
8. folder h. junk mail
9. Ipad i. the Firefox term for favorite (used by Internet Explorer)
10. kindle j. a quick data flow along a telephone line or a modem
11. to log on k. where a computer stores data that may be used again
12. paypal l. a computer program on a mobile phone or tablet
13. to post m. a small data storage device
14. spam n. the last few letters of a filename
15. tablet o. to take the errors out of a computer program
16. thread p. to stop working
17. USB port q. a way of paying for things online
18. USB stick/key r. a place for storing files
19. webmaster s. a thin, lightweight electronic reading device
20. to zip t. a collection of messages with the same subject
heading within a discussion forum
Communication 75


ADSL Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line

ALU Arithmetic Logic Unit
ASCII American Standard Code for Information Interchange
ASP Active Server Pages or Application Service Provider
ATM Asynchronous Transfer Mode
BLOG Web Log USB: Universal Serial Bus
CAD Computer Aided Design
CD-RW Compact Disk Rewritable
com communication
CPU Central Processing Unit
DIR directory
DVD Digital Video (Versatile) Disk/(R) Recordable
FAQ Frequently Asked Questions
FTP File Transfer Protocol
GIF Graphics Interchange Format
GSM Global System for Mobile
HTML Hypertext Markup Language
HTTP(S) Hypertext Transfer Protocol (Secure)
http hyper terminal tracing program
ICANN Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers
IMAP Internet Messaging Access Protocol
ISO International Standards Organization
ISP Internet Service Provider
ISDN Integrated Services Digital Network
IT Information Technology
JPEG Joint Photographics Expert Group
MP3 MPEG (Moving Picture Experts Group) Layer 3
org organization
OS Operating System
PDF Portable Document Format
PROM Programmable Read-Only Memory
RAM(s) Random-Access Memory (Memories)
RTF Rich Text Format
SMS Short Message Service
TIFF Tagged Image File Format
UMTS Universal Mobile Telecommunications System
URL Uniform Resource Locator (its the address of a www page)
WAN Wide Area Network
WAP Wireless Application Protocol
Wi-Fi Wireless Fidelity
www world wide web
76 Part 5


analogue signal: a type of signal that can take any value between a maximum and
a minimum.
digital system: an electronic system that has only two states, e.g.: on or off.
bit: short form for binary digit, the basic unit used in computer data
either 0 = absence of electrical impulse;
or 1 = presence of electrical impulse.
buffering: process of temporary storage of data from a fast source to a
slower system.
byte: a unit of computing information, consisting of a precise number
of bits (8 bits); one byte represents one letter or one number.
chip: integrated microcircuit.
kilobyte (KB): 1024 bytes (210: two to the power of ten), used as a measure of
computer memory or storage power. The chip has a 64 kilobyte
megabyte (MB): 1,048,576 bytes (220: two to the power of twenty), used as a
measure of computer memory or storage power.
gigabyte (GB): 1,073,741,824 bytes (230: two to the power of thirty,
standardized in 109: ten to the power of nine), used as a measure
of computer memory or storage power.
hardware: mechanical and electronic parts of a computer: screen, keyboard,
hard-disk, printer, scanner, etc.
software: programs used with a computer.


back forward
up down
acquire add to favourites
copy to folder move to folder
scroll bars cut
delete cut file
undo redo
rename copy image
paste set caption
copy to move to
add to image remove from image
add to basket remove from basket
Communication 77


Symbol How to read it Example How to read it

+ plus, and, add 7 + 8 = 15 seven add eight is fifteen

- minus; take away 13 3 = 10 thirteen take away three is ten
plus or minus x plus or minus x
seven multiplied by nine (seven
x multiplied by; ... times ... 7 x 9 = 63 times nine) is sixty-three
: divided by 10 : 2 = 5 ten divided by two is five
= is equal to; equals a=b a is equal to b
is not equal to; does not
equal ab a is not equal to b
is approximately equal to ab a is approximately equal to b
is equivalent to cd c is equivalent to d
< is less than a<5 a is less than five
is much less than a5 a is much less than five
is not less than a5 a is not less than five
is less than or equal to a5 a is less than or equal to five
> is greater than 9>7 nine is greater than seven
is not greater than b6 b is not greater than six
is greater than or equal to b6 b is greater than or equal to six
% per cent 9% nine per cent
square root (of)
cube root (of)
x 2
x squared
x 3
x cubed
x 5
x to the power of five
pi [pai]
r radius of a circle
five is to twenty as three is
5:20=3:12 to twelve
parallel to
perpendicular to
() parentheses
[] square brackets
angle brackets
{} braces
dx differential of x
dy/dx derivative of y with
respect to x
integral of
is an element of
78 Part 5


in inch = 25.4 mm
ft foot = 30.48 cm
yd yard = 0.914 m
ml mile = 1.609 km
mm millimetre
cm centimetre = 0.394 in
m metre = 39.4 in or 1.094 yd
km kilometre = 0.6214 mile
sq square; sq in = square inch; sq m = square metre
1/6 one sixth
1/4 one quarter
3/5 three fifths read the top number as a cardinal number, followed by
the ordinal number + s
1.7 one point seven
15.54 fifteen point five four
0.2 (nought) point two
0.751 (nought) point seven five one
356 three hundred AND fifty-six British English takes and
between hundreds and tens, while American English omits it
1,000 one thousand
1,000,000 one million
1,000,000,000 one billion

Decimals in English-speaking
countries are separated by a full
stop, while sequences of three
digits like thousands, millions,
billions, etc. are separated by a
Basically, it is the reverse of what
happens with the Italian numeral
Communication 79


1. Match the words with the signs and then fill in the gaps.
x add (and)
- multiply (by)
+ divide (by)
: subtract (from)

a. If you 2 6, you get 8.

b. If you 4 2, you get 8.
c. If you .. 5 13, you get 8.
d. If you .. 32 4, you get 8.

2. Match the mathematical expressions with their equivalent spoken form.

Math expression Spoken form Matching

a 4 = 2 1 25 per cent
b 2
2 =4 2 nought point 1 or point 1
c 16-4 = 2 3 a quarter or one quarter
d 4 three point one five
e 5 2 squared is 4
f 25% 6 16 to the minus 4 is 2
g 0.1 7 (the square) root (of) 4 is 2
h 3.15 8 a half or one half

3. Below are some terms for saying weights and measures. Match the metric term
on the left with the nearest non-metric equivalent on the right.
a. centimetre 1. ounce
b. meter 2. mile
c. square metre 3. inch
d. kilometre 4. pound
e. liter 5. pint
f. gram 6. yard
g. kilogram 7. acre

4. Complete the conversions.

a. One inch equals
b. One foot equals .
c. One yard equals
d. One acre equals .
e. One mile equals .
f. One pint equals ..
g. One gallon equals ..
h. One ounce equals ..
i. One pound equals ..

Pronunciation and Phonetics

Pronunciation skills. A guide to a correct pronunciation.

Each language is made up of three different layers:
1. phonetics;
2. lexicon;
3. morpho-syntax.

This is why, besides studying the grammar and increasing the vocabulary of a
foreign language, it is fundamental to learn also a correct pronunciation of words.
A good pronunciation is important for a good spoken communication. Even if you
are not able to speak like a native, what matters is rather being able to speak clearly so
that other people can understand what you want to say.
There are many different English accents in Britain and all around the world. Some
varieties of English include British English (BrE), American English (AmE), and
Australian English (AusE).
This section is thought of as a practical guide to grasp the basic concepts of

How to improve your pronunciation

Learning each sound of English and the different symbols representing every sound
will help you to improve your pronunciation.
In writing English we use the 26 letters of the English alphabet; however, there are
44 sounds in the English language. This is why to represent them all a system of
phonetic transcription has been devised the International Phonetic Alphabet which
uses a group of symbols; some of them are the same as letters, while others are
different. This means that the number of sounds in a word is not always the same as
the number of letters.

82 Part 6

The phonemic symbols can be used to write out the pronunciation of words.
Dictionaries for English learners usually show the pronunciation of the word written
out using these special symbols.
The transcription is written between slashes (//) to differentiate it from the
spelling. Here is an example:

Learning the phonemic symbols, besides being very useful, will also allow you to
autonomously use the dictionary to find the pronunciation of any word in English.
The following websites contain interactive phonetic charts useful to check the correct
pronunciation of the sounds of English:
Pronunciation and Phonetics 83


The IPA is a system of symbols devised by linguists to write the sounds of English;
they have been organised into different groups:

Short vowel sounds

Long vowel sounds

Diphthongs (double vowel sounds)

Voiceless consonant sounds

Voiced consonant sounds

Other consonant sounds

Other symbols

- ' main stress secondary stress prefer /pr'fr/

- syllable division system /'ss tm/
- Linking r is pronounced only before a vowel in British English.
four /f:r/ four apples /f: 'rplz/
84 Part 6

The most common sound in English is schwa. It is a weak, unstressed sound and it
occurs in many words, such as articles and prepositions. The phonemic symbol for this
sound is //.
The sound schwa can represent not only a single letter, but also several letters or even
a whole syllable. This is often seen in words which have an unstressed syllable made
up of a vowel letter followed by the letter 'r'.
In the following sentences, the schwa sounds are marked in red:

Here is a letter for the teacher.

I went to the shop to buy a present for my brother.

In fluent speech we do not pronounce a word, stop, then say the next word in the
sentence, but words frequently bump into each other. These changes in pronunciation,
described as features of connected speech, typically occur between the end and the
beginning of some words. Being aware of them can improve listening comprehension.

Linking is a way of joining the pronunciation of two words so that they are easy to say
and to pronounce. In English there are different ways that this happens:

~ Consonant to vowel linking

When one word ends with a consonant sound and the next word begins with a
vowel sound there is a smooth link between the two. In these examples the link is
shown in red joining the linked words. These examples also show where the weak
form schwa would be pronounced.

~ Vowel to vowel linking

When one word ends with a vowel sound and the next word begins with a vowel,
another sound, a /w/ or /j/ can be added depending on the particular sounds to
make a smooth transition. In these examples the link is shown in red along with the
phonemic symbol for the sound which is added to make the link smooth.

~ Linking r
In British English final r is not pronounced, but it is reintroduced when the next
word begins with a vowel.

fou(r) /f:/ (no /r/ in pronunciation)

Four is my lucky number

(/r/ is pronounced and links to the following word)
Pronunciation and Phonetics 85

~ Sounds twinning (gemination)

When a word ends in a consonant sound and the following word begins with the
same consonant sound, we dont pronounce two sounds both sounds are
pronounced together as one.
Hes a bit tired Is she your sister? Ive finished

/t/ // /f/

~ Sounds disappear (elision)

When the sounds /t/ or /d/ occur between two consonant sounds, they will often
disappear from the pronunciation.
Theyre leaving nex(t) week. This is the wors(t) film Ive ever watched!
Jus(t) one guest came to the party! She can(t) cook.

~ Sounds change (assimilation)

When a consonant sound at the end of a word takes on the quality of the consonant
sound at the beginning of the next word.

g g:l/
Lucys a good girl. /gg p pep/
I prefer white paper. /wap

Because of the place in the mouth where certain sounds are made, sometimes the
sound at the end of the first word changes to a completely different sound.

We can buy it. /km

m ba/ She arrives on Monday. /m
m mnde/

Sometimes more than one feature of connected speech happens at the same time.
For example, when the sounds /t/ or /d/ occur between two consonant sounds, not
only they will often disappear completely from the pronunciation, but the last
sound of the word can be changed by the following word.

I'm going to visit Saint Paul's Cathedral today. /sem

em p:ls/

Another common form of assimilation occurs when both the last sound of the first
word and the first sound of the following word change to a third sound.

Would you Would you /w'

/ like some coffee?
Did you Did you /d'
/ meet him?
Do you Do you /'
/ want an ice-cream?

In English some consonants are voiced while others are voiceless. You may feel it by
putting two fingers on your throat: if you pronounce the sound /z/ you will feel your
vowel cords vibrate, while if you pronounce the voiceless consonant /s/ it will be just
air coming out through your mouth.
The following sounds are usually voiceless:

The sounds below are only fully voiced when they are between other voiced sounds:
86 Part 6


a [e] b [bi:] c [si:] d [di:] e [i:] f [ef]

g [i:] h [e] i [a] j [de] k [ke] l [el]

m [em] n [en] o [] p [pi:] q [kju:] r [a:*]

s [es] t [ti:] u [ju:] v [vi:] w [dblju:] x [eks]

y [wa] z [zed]

1. Arrange the following words in alphabetical order, then write their phonetic
transcription, pointing out the main stress. Finally write a few sentences with
some of them.
education - university - iron - management - minute (adj.) -
London - adjective - attendance - July - exam - orange (n.)

Word Phonetic script Meaning A sentence

2. Complete the table with the information required. You can add more words
while attending the English course.

Phonetic script Word Meaning A sentence

/sts/ justice giustizia He has a great sense of justice.
Pronunciation and Phonetics 87


For each symbol of the IPA think of one word containing the corresponding sound.
An example is already provided for the short vowel sound //.

Short vowel sounds

Long vowel sounds

Diphthongs (double vowel sounds)

Voiceless consonant sounds

Voiced consonant sounds

Other consonant sounds

Knowing the exact pronunciation

of words can also help you use
correctly the indefinite article
Look at these examples:
an hour /'ar/
a uniform /jn'f:m/

Can you explain the rule?

88 Part 6


1. Complete the definition of homophones and homographs by using these words:

spelling - pronunciation meaning

Homophones are words with the same , but a different and

. An example is: bean /'bi:n/, a noun, and been /'bi:n/, the past
participle of the verb to be.

Homographs are words with the same , but a different and

sometimes a different . too.
Here is an example: minute /'mnt/, a noun, and minute /ma'nju:t/, an adjective.


2. Here are some homophones. Write the phonetic script of each word pair.

1. write-right 5. piece-peace
2. quite-quiet 6. cease-seize
3. cold-called 7. since-sins
4. one-won 8. their-there-theyre

3. Each of these sentences contains one word which sounds correct but which is
spelt wrongly. Identify these homophones by circling them and write the correct

1. Im really cold! Theres a terrible draft in this room.

2. Whos book is this?
3. Georges father is the mare of the town.
4. Witch course are you attending?
5. The son is really hot today!
6. This hotel has luxury sweets.

4. Can you find the English homophones corresponding to each phonetic script?
Write them out!

1. /'sat/ a. ..................... 5. /'flu:/ a. .....................

b. ..................... b. .....................

2. /'nju:/ a. ..................... 6. /'sm/ a. .....................

b. ..................... b. .....................

3. /'wet/ a. ..................... 7. /'plen/ a. .....................

b. ..................... b. .....................

4. /'er/ a. ..................... 8. /'wi:k/ a. .....................

b. ..................... b. .....................
Pronunciation and Phonetics 89


5. Here are some examples of English homographs. Write their phonetic

transcription, paying attention to their grammar function. You will notice that
sometimes the pronunciation is the same.

a. (noun) ...............................
1 bow
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (adj.) ...............................
2 close
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
3 desert
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
4 present
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
5 produce
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
6 record
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
7 book
b. (verb) ...............................
a. (noun) ...............................
8 leaves
b. (verb) ...............................

6. Which word is suitable to each context? For each sentence, circle the phonetic
script corresponding to the correct homograph to be used and write the word.

1. Japanese use to when they greet people.

a. /ba/ b. /b/
2. These pills can dangerous side-effects.
a. /prdju:s/ b. /prdju:s/

3. This athlete set a new world last year.

a. /rk:d/ b. /rk:d/

4. If youre not satisfied with this product, you can get a

a. /ri:fnd/ b. /rfnd/

5. You usually need a special to work in a foreign country.

a. /pmt/ b. /p:mt/

6. When I was younger, I was a

a. /rebl/ b. /rbel

7. Write on your copybook any new homophones and/or homographs you might
learn during the English course.
90 Part 6


Nowadays there are about four times as many speakers of American English (AmE)
as speakers of British English. Because of the USA leading position in business, politics,
cinema, telecommunications, advertisements, popular music, trade and technology
(including the Internet), Americanisms are being spread all over the world.
American English and British English are the most widespread varieties of English
spoken around the world, and thus serve as reference norms for other varieties of this
language, including for example Australian English, New Zealand English, Canadian
English, South African English, Indian English and Caribbean English.
It is common to hear by a speaker of British English or by a speaker of American
English that they do not understand each other. That is obviously not true. The most
relevant difference, widely shared, is their accent. But there are substantial differences
also in vocabulary, spelling, pronunciation and grammar in general.
The history of American English is closely connected to the history of colonization
and settlement in North America. Indeed, English was brought to America by colonists
in the 17th century, and through various linguistic processes, rapidly developed a
uniformity and standardisation of its own, with a unique pronunciation, vocabulary
and grammar.
In 1607 the first American colony was established by the British in Jamestown,
Virginia, a state named after Elizabeth I, the Virgin Queen. Later, the Pilgrim Fathers
sailed from Plymouth and established a new colony in 1620, bringing with them their
culture and language more than anything else.
This language developed in the following two hundred years or thereabout through
the contribution of the languages of Native Americans and of the French, Italian,
Dutch, and German settlers. In fact, although the English were not the only Europeans
there at that time, before the 19th century, the majority of immigrants to North
America were English-speakers.
The Spanish, for example, also had an influence on American English, by
introducing words like canyon, ranch and vigilante through the settlement of the
American West. French words (through Louisiana) and West African words (through
the slave trade) also influenced American English.
Inventions and technology have done and are still doing the rest.

Differences in spelling are numerous and they help the reader distinguish between
the two Englishes:
Americans use -er instead of -re in words like theater/theatre, kilometer/kilometre,
showing the tendency to make the pronunciation of these words more phonic, more
similar to their spelling. The same happens for the group -our that becomes -or in
words like color/colour or flavor/flavour;
they do not double the /l/ as in traveler (BrE: traveller) or the /m/ as in swiming
(BrE: swimming);
Pronunciation and Phonetics 91

other variations include the use of x instead of ct: connexion (BrE: connection), the
use of z instead of s as in realize (BrE: realise), being the spelling more similar to
its pronunciation.

Americans use gotten instead of received or learned instead of learnt. They also
tend to use nouns as verbs (like to guest from guest) and verbs as nouns (like a build
up from to build up). Moreover, the subjunctive is rather common in American English,
e.g.: We asked that he stay there.
In AmE the 2nd person plural pronouns, you guys, and you people, are heard
frequently and there is a different use of prepositions from British English, as in
different than instead of different from.

In American English:
/r/ is usually pronounced (e.g. board /'brd/, supper /'spr/);
the sound // is pronounced /a:/ (e.g. block: BrE /'blk/, AmE /'bla:k/);
the vowel u is pronounced // instead of /j/ (e.g. student: AmE /'stu:dnt/, BrE
The old, rich families of Boston still speak with a distinctive Bostonian accent which
is similar to Britain's 'RP. Obviously there are many regional dialects in the various
areas, i.e. Southern Coastal, Northern, Midland, Western (check map).
General American English (GAE) can be considered a sort of standard AmE.
92 Part 6


The term British English (BrE) is used to distinguish it from American English and
the other Englishes spoken in Australia, South Africa, etc.
British English is the language spoken in the United Kingdom, without ignoring the
many distinctive features of Scottish, Welsh and Irish Englishes and the many dialect
influences on the RP/Queens/Kings/BBC/Standard English, as it is differently
named. The language carrying these names is generally used by educated people and
by the upper and middle classes. English people tend to be rather jealous of their
Today, standard English is the language used by educated people and is taught in
schools both in England and in Europe. In Italy we accept British English as the
language to be thought to students at school and universities.
The phonetic transcription of British English in dictionaries is usually based on RP
and uses the symbols of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA).
Nowadays also many educated people accept and use regional influences mostly in
their spoken language.

Regional English
Modern dialects have their roots in Old English. They are often characterized by the
use of non-standard forms such as double negative structures, e.g. I dont want none,
dropped prepositions as in Hes gone down the pub, or variant pronouns such as hisself
and theirselves. Dialects are usually spoken with a regional accent.
Here are some dialects:
- Geordie, with some features typical of Scottish English;
- Scouse, a Liverpool dialect;
- Brummie (Birmingham English), spoken in the Midlands;
- Yorkshire, spoken in the north-east of England.

Most British people can recognize Cockney, a London dialect of the working class.
Characteristics of a Cockney accent include the dropping of the letter h (e.g. the
pronunciation of the word house: /'aus/ for /haus/), a feature shared by many speakers
in different regions.
At this point it seems relevant to go back to G.B. Shaws Pygmalion or to the musical
My Fair Lady. The phonetician Henry Higgins wins a bet: the Cockney flower girl Eliza
Doolittle passes for a duchess at an ambassadors garden party after teaching her
impeccable speech. And to the purpose of the dropping of the /h/sound, typical of
Cockney speakers, it is unforgettable the scene on the stage when Eliza is practicing
the /h/sound: the girl is sitting near a table in the middle of the stage and blowing at a
candle, hoping for the flickering of the flame, the clear demonstration of the educated
pronunciation of the /h/ sound, a glottal, fricative phoneme.
Pronunciation and Phonetics 93

Estuary English
In the 1990s a new dialect, Estuary English, spread in the area around the estuary
of the river Thames and its name is after the river itself. It is a combination of Cockney
and RP and is the result of the upward social rising of some Cockney speakers and a
falling from Standard English by some educated speakers.
Estuary English should have been the expression of a new classless society. It can be
heard in Parliament and on television too. It is no longer as popular as in its beginning.
Prof. David Rosewarne called it this way. He was a very successful guest speaker at
the TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages) Group in Benevento,
some years ago.

1. What is BrE?
2. What is usually referred to as RP?
3. What are the main regional dialects and where are they spoken?
4. What is Cockney?
5. What is Estuary English?
94 Part 6


1. Can you find the Italian equivalent for these idioms?

1. to be born with a silver spoon in your mouth

2. to catch someone red-handed
3. to have a finger in many pies
4. I wouldnt do it for all the tea of China.
5. Its a hot potato. You cant
6. to pull someones leg judge a book
by its cover.

2. Match the following idioms with their meaning.
1. Whats up? a. (something) very easy to do
2. Break a leg! b. to keep quiet/silent (infml)
3. to keep fingers crossed c. to cost a lot of money
4. a piece of cake d. I cant believe it!
5. Bite my tongue e. very rarely
6. to cost a pretty penny f. Good luck!
7. Get out of here! g. If something applies to you, accept it. (infml)
8. once in a blue moon h. to have troubles understanding something
9. In your dreams! i. I dont believe you!/Theres no way thats true.
10. If the shoe fits, wear it! j. Enjoy life!
11. miss the point k. irritates me
12. grab a bite l. Whats happening? (infml)
13. gets on my nerves m. to wish someone good luck
14. Live it up! n. have something quick to eat

3. Complete the following conversations with an idiom from those listed above.
A: Im so nervous. Tomorrow Im sitting my first exam.
B: Are you? Well, dont worry and !

A: Hi! How did you do at the exam?

B: I got an A. The exam was !
A: Did you see that car?
B: I bet its really fast!
A: It must have cost !
A: So your sister lives in Prague. Do you often see her?
B: Not at all! I just see her !
A: Do you understand now?
B: Well, could you explain it again? I think I !
A: Im starving!
B: Really? Lets ?
A: Sounds good!
Pronunciation and Phonetics 95


1. Match the AmE words with the BrE ones.

AmE: cookie, trunk, program, fall, truck, subway, mailman, check, bookstore,
apartment, elevator, sidewalk, zip code, eggplant, French fries, candy
BrE: pavement, flat, postcode, lift, lorry, sweet, bill, bookshop, programme,
autumn, biscuit, underground, postman, aubergine, potato chips, boot


2. For each word listed below two different pronunciations are provided. Write BrE
or AmE next to each phonetic script.

Word Phonetic script 1 Phonetic script 2

1 Renaissance /ren'sa:ns/ /r'nesns/
2 new /'nu:/ /'nju:/
3 category /kt'g:ri/ /'ktgri/
4 fragile /'frdal/ /'frdl/
5 territory /'tertri/ /ter't:ri/
6 ceremony /ser'mni/ /'semni/
7 template /'templet/ /'templt/
Part 7

Translation skills

1. A quale tempo dellinglese corrisponde lIndicativo Presente dellitaliano?
Quando traduci un tempo dallitaliano allinglese, per evitare di commettere errori
ed usare un tempo sbagliato (non sempre, infatti, c unesatta corrispondenza tra
litaliano e linglese), immagina sempre, prima, una timeline, poi poniti queste

Past Present Future

a. che rapporto ha con il presente lazione indicata dal verbo?

b. lazione indicata dal verbo (indipendentemente dal tempo usato in italiano)
spostata in avanti (quindi, nel futuro) o collocata nel passato?
c. si tratta di unazione che si protrae nel tempo, iniziata nel passato e tuttora in
corso nel presente?
d. si tratta di unazione abituale?

Leggi queste frasi e, per tradurle, segui i suggerimenti dati:

Italiano Chiediti: Inglese Tempo da usare
Lazione legata al
Stasera vado al
1 presente o rivolta al

Stamattina non Lazione ormai

2 ho fatto compiuta o legata al
colazione. presente?

Studio cinque ore Lazione abituale o

ogni giorno. sporadica?

Lazione avviene nel

A: Cosa prendi?
4 presente o nel futuro,
B: Un t, grazie.
anche se immediato?

Lazione iniziata nel

Gioco a calcio da
5 passato ed ancora
10 anni.
in corso?

98 Part 7

Osserva queste frasi e spiega le differenze legate alluso di diversi tempi verbali.
a. Ive been playing the guitar for 10 years.
b. Ive played the guitar for 10 years.
c. I played the guitar for 10 years.

2. Now translate these sentences from Italian into English.

1. Studio inglese alluniversit.
2. Stasera Claudio va al ristorante cinese con gli amici.
3. A Natale ci trasferiamo nella casa nuova.
5. A: Cosa fai? B: Niente di particolare, guardo la TV.
6. A: Cosa fai? B: Lingegnere.
7. Dopo la lezione di inglese torno a casa.
8. A: Cosa prendi? B: Un caff, grazie.
9. Ciao, ti scrivo per ringraziarti ...
10. Oggi non lavoro.
11. Non lavoro mai il sabato.

In questa tabella troverai alcuni tempi verbali usati nella lingua inglese per indicare
azioni presenti e passate; per ognuno indicata la formazione e sono fornite due frasi
come esempio, in italiano.
Ti accorgerai che non vi sempre unesatta corrispondenza tra il tempo verbale
usato in italiano e quello in inglese. Prova a tradurre le frasi in inglese!

Italian English

Vado alluniversit quattro

Present Simple
giorni a settimana.
forma base del verbo Non vado mai a cinema.

Questanno studio inglese

Present Continuous
am/is/are + -ing Oggi il sig. Smith non lavora.

Present Simple Questo libro diviso in diversi

Passive capitoli.
Translation skills 99

La posta consegnata ogni

be + past participle

Present Perfect Mary stata negli Stati Uniti di

Simple recente.
A: Da quanto tempo conosci
have/has + past Jane?
B: La conosco da 2 mesi.

Present Perfect Sono stanco: ho studiato tutto il

Continuous giorno!
have/has been + Anna suona il pianoforte da 10
-ing anni.

Questestate sono stato in

Past Simple
-ed Stamattina non ho fatto
(regular verbs) colazione.

Past Simple Passive Sono nato il 10 maggio.

was/were + past Questa casa stata costruita
participle 25 anni fa.

Ti stavo appena scrivendo

Past Continuous unemail quando mi hai
Ieri mattina, a questora, stavo
was/were + -ing
andando in treno a Firenze.

Guarda la timeline e cerca di spiegare quando si usano i tempi verbali elencati nella
Past ----------------------------- Present --------------------------- Future


1. Write one sentence for each tense listed in the table below.

Present Simple

Present Continuous

Present Simple Passive

Present Perfect Simple

Present Perfect
Past Simple

Past Simple Passive

Past Continuous
100 Part 7

2. Complete the sentences below with the correct tense of the verbs suggested.

1. I to Africa twice. (be)

2. We Physics for our exam when you phoned. (revise)
3. Sophie is a very good dancer. She since she was 5. (dance)
4. Mario his driving license yesterday. (get)
5. These students classes regularly. (attend)
6. Lecture-rooms every day. (clean)

3. Write the correct form of the verbs: Past Simple, positive or negative. Use each
verb twice: once in the positive and once in the negative forms.

sell invent go own

a. Neil Armstrong to the moon in 1869. He to the moon in

b. Apple Computers the first personal computer in 1877. They
it in 1977.
c. Alexander Bell the telephone in 1876. Nokia invent it.
d. Most people a TV in the 1950s, but many people a radio.

4. Present Simple or Present Continuous?

1. He doing the washing-up. (doesnt like isnt liking)

2. Today I a pair of jeans and a shirt. (wear m wearing)
3. Laura as a waitress in a pub at the moment. (works is
4. Someone for you in the computer lab. (waits is waiting)
5. They often their grandparents in summer. (visit are visiting)
6. I my driving test this weekend. (take m taking)

5. Past Simple or Present Perfect?

1. I my best friend since I was 10. (knew have known)

2. The professor a very interesting topic yesterday.
(explained has explained)
3. you ever my cousin? (Did/meet Have/met)
4. We . in this town for 20 years by now. (lived have lived)
5. They in New York from 1998 to 2006. (lived have lived)
6. He many interesting jobs in his life. (had has had)
Translation skills 101


In inglese ci sono almeno tre forme diverse per esprimere lidea di futuro: il Present
Continuous, going to oppure will.

Si usa con i verbi to go e to come per programmi futuri:
Es.: Domani sera i miei amici verranno al cinema con me.
Tomorrow night my friends are coming to the cinema with me.

Si usa:
- per esprimere un accordo futuro tra persone:
Es.: Prenderanno il treno per Roma.
They are going to take the train to Rome.
- per esprimere un programma futuro o lintenzione che precede il momento di
Es.: Matt, David e Jane dipingeranno la stanza di Helen di giallo.
Matt, David and Jane are going to paint Helens room yellow.
- si usa anche per esprimere la conseguenza di un fatto di cui c gi evidenza ora:
Es.: Il Napoli vincer la partita.
Naples is going to win the match.
(Its three-nil and there are only a couple of minutes left to play).

- Si usa per esprimere unintenzione contemporanea al momento di parlare:
Es.: Per me una bistecca di vitello con insalata.
Ill have a beef steak with salad.
- oppure per indicare il futuro, in generale:
Es.: Pap sar a Manchester per una settimana.
Dad will be in Manchester for a week.


Unazione che avviene nel passato, ma dopo un verbo di dire, narrare, riferire,
raccontare, si rende in inglese con il condizionale semplice e non passato.
Es.: Il mio amico disse che sarebbe venuto con la macchina.
My friend said he would come by car.

Translate these sentences into English.

1. I miei amici americani verranno a casa il prossimo fine settimana.
2. Penso che la prossima estate sar molto calda.
3. Spero di avere abbastanza soldi per comprare un nuovo cellulare a fine mese.
4. Davide e i suoi amici di universit studieranno insieme tutto il pomeriggio.
5. Carla e Giulio si sposano a maggio.
6. Anna inizier luniversit a settembre.
102 Part 7


Il periodo ipotetico sempre formato da due proposizioni:

proposizione dipendente introdotta da if proposizione principale (main
(if clause), che introduce la condizione + clause), che illustra la conseguenza
If you press this button, the camera starts filming.

ZERO CONDITIONAL (periodo ipotetico di tipo zero)

Si usa per descrivere una conseguenza che si verifica regolarmente in una certa

if + Present Simple Present Simple

If you buy two packets of biscuits, you get one free.

Lo zero conditional si usa per esprimere:

~ verit generali e leggi scientifiche: If prices fall, the demand for goods increases.
~ eventi che si verificano regolarmente: I get a headache if I drink coffee.
~ processi meccanici. If the engine overheats, it cuts out.
Lo zero conditional si usa anche per dare istruzioni o consigli. In questi casi, nella
proposizione principale si usa spesso limperativo o un modale:
If you feel cold, put a jumper on.

FIRST CONDITIONAL (periodo ipotetico di primo tipo)

Si usa per parlare di eventi futuri probabili o possibili:

if + Present Simple Future (will/wont)

If you invite her, she will come.

Nella proposizione introdotta da if si usa sempre il Present Simple, anche quando in

italiano pi comune usare il futuro:
Se domani mi telefonerai/telefoni, ti dir. If you phone me Tomorrow, Ill tell you.
Si usa when anzich if per parlare di condizioni che si verificheranno certamente:
When the sun rises, well leave the camp.

SECOND CONDITIONAL (periodo ipotetico di secondo tipo)

Si usa per parlare di eventi futuri che si ritengono improbabili o impossibili.

if + Past Simple would/wouldnt + forma base del verbo

If you pulled the emergency brake, the train would stop.

Il second conditional si usa anche per immaginare condizioni diverse dalla realt
presente: If I had time, Id go to the gym every day.

Quando il verbo della proposizione introdotta da if be, la forma were per tutte le
persone: If I were rich, Id stop working.
Translation skills 103

THIRD CONDITIONAL (periodo ipotetico di terzo tipo)

Si usa per parlare di eventi che sarebbero potuti accadere se determinate condizioni
si fossero realizzate.

if + Past Perfect would have /wouldnt have

(had + participio passato) + + Past Participle
If the weather had been fine, we would have gone to the seaside.

N.B.: Nei tempi composti lausiliare sempre have anche quando in italiano
lausiliare o il verbo principale essere.

Translate these sentences into English.

1. Se bevo il caff la sera, non riesco a dormire.
2. Se non smetti di mangiare biscotti, non perdi peso.
3. Se entrasse un ladro (burglar) in casa, scatterebbe (go off) lallarme.
4. Se gli studenti non si prenotano in anticipo, non possono sostenere lesame.
5. Cosa avresti fatto se avessi avuto molto tempo?
6. Se non si ottiene un permesso di lavoro, non si pu lavorare in questo paese.
7. Ci sarebbe meno traffico se le persone usassero i trasporti pubblici.
8. Saremmo andati al concerto se avessimo trovato i biglietti.
9. Se parlassimo un inglese perfetto non avremmo bisogno di fare questi esercizi.
10. Saresti andato in vacanza se avessi avuto abbastanza soldi?


1. Match the verbal forms to the left with their equivalent in Italian.
1. Dont open the door. a. Non essere scortese!
2. Be careful, please. b. Fammi pagare!
3. Lets not talk about this again! c. Non aprire la porta.
4. She asked me not to go. d. Stai attento, per favore.
5. Dont be rude! e. Non parliamone pi!
6. Let me pay! f. Mi chiese di non andare.

2. Translate into Italian.

1. Digli di non preoccuparsi per me.
2. Vieni allincontro domani pomeriggio.
3. Non guardare troppa televisione.
4. Non parlare al conducente.
5. Falla aspettare qui.
6. Fammi sapere cosa hai deciso.
104 Part 7

The infinitive in English is made by adding to before the base form of the verb.
i.e. I am glad to know this.
Mi fa piacere sapere questo.

To is omitted when the infinitive follows modal verbs like can, may, could, must,
would, might.
i.e. They can come later.
Possono venire pi tardi.

In English the infinitive is not preceded by a preposition when it refers to a purpose,

differently from Italian (which uses, for example, di, a, per, da).
i.e. We went to the pub to meet our friends.
Siamo andati al pub per incontrare i nostri amici.

In English the infinitive is replaced by the gerund when it is preceded by a preposition,

as in these examples:
i.e. He went out without speaking.
Usc senza parlare.
Give me a ring before coming.
Fammi uno squillo prima di venire.

Infinitive in Italian, gerund in English.

1. Viaggiare bello.
2. Guidare la macchina richiede attenzione.
3. importante ascoltare gli altri.
4. Ballare la mia passione!
5. Vado a fare compere tutti i giorni.
6. salutare allenarsi tre volte a settimana.


How do you translate the Italian verb fare? Choose among make, do, have, take, be.
fare compere fare un errore
fare i compiti fare un esame
fare tardi fare presto
fare una foto fare una frase
fare una torta fare un viaggio
fare i lavori di casa
fare la spesa (cibo)
fare unesperienza
Translation skills 105

Reflexive verbs in English are followed by a reflexive pronoun, like myself, yourself,
himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves. Only a few verbs need to be
followed by a reflexive pronoun in English, while other verbs like amuse, blame, cut,
enjoy, hurt, introduce can be followed by either a reflexive pronoun or by an object.
Ex.: The teacher introduced Carlo, the new student, to the class.
Carlo introduced himself to his classmates.
Some verbs (like complain, dress, shave, wash, get up, stop, train, wake up) are reflexive
only in Italian, not in English.
Ex.: I woke up late this morning.
Mi sono svegliato tardi stamattina.
Also verbs implying a change are reflexive only in Italian, while in English they are
usually translated with the verb to get + past participle or adjective.
Ex.: Fiona e Marco si sposano a giugno.
Fiona and Marco will get married in June.
una ragazza piuttosto nervosa. Si arrabbia facilmente.
Shes quite a nervous girl. She easily gets angry.
If the Italian reflexive verb is followed by a direct object, in English the reflexive
pronoun will be omitted and a possessive adjective will be used instead.
Ex.: Mi piaciuto davvero il soggiorno allestero.
I really enjoyed my stay abroad.

1. Translate these sentences into English. Use the dictionary, if necessary.

1. Luca si ruppe la gamba in vacanza.
2. Fa freddo fuori! Mettiti il cappotto!
3. Queste persone si lamentano sempre.
4. Quando ascolto la radio mi rilasso.
5. Ci siamo divertiti molto ieri sera!
6. Mi alleno tre volte a settimana.
7. Bisogna fermarsi al semaforo.
8. La domenica mi alzo molto tardi.
9. Ci piaciuto molto il film.
10. Non mi sono sentito bene ieri sera.

2. Translate these sentences into English.

1. Mio fratello si trasferito in Australia.
2. andato in Spagna per imparare la lingua.
3. Sara sempre la prima ad arrivare.
4. Devo prepararmi per andare a lavoro.
5. Grazie per avermi invitato alla tua festa.
6. Facciamo uno spuntino prima di partire.
106 Part 7


1. Translate into English.

1. Il commercio nellUnione Europea molto importante.
2. Lamicizia e la famiglia sono due valori fondamentali per me.
3. Lamore un sentimento spontaneo in tutti noi.
4. Listruzione ha un ruolo decisivo nella formazione di una persona.
5. La matematica era la mia materia preferita a scuola.

2. Underline the correct form, with or without the.

1. The last summer/Last summer I went to Rome.
2. I like the Sicily/Sicily.
3. Ibiza is the place of happiness, of the sun/sun and of the young/young!
4. I love sea/the sea, so Im thinking of going to Amalfi.
5. The Sardinia inhabitants/Sardinia inhabitants are hospitable and kind to tourists.
6. I often go to restaurant/the restaurant with my friends to eat the pizza/pizza.
7. In the USA the children/children are free to attend public or private schools.
8. I would like to go to London the next Christmas/next Christmas.

3. Correct the sentences by adding or deleting the.

1. They dont understand and dont speak the English.
2. The languages are very important.
3. Its very difficult to learn German language.
4. In all the situations knowing languages ensures many opportunities not only in
the life, but above all at the work.
5. On Internet we can also chat with people from different countries.
6. In this century it is very important to know the English because the people use
the computers, and Internet.
7. In 18th century travelling wasnt so easy as it is today.
8. I would like to visit the Statue of the Liberty.

4. Complete with the or (nothing).

1. She usually leaves home at eight.
2. Gabriel likes cooking.
3. They work in centre of Barcelona.
4. We usually have breakfast together.
5. They often go to bed early.
6. You cant take photographs in this theatre.
Translation skills 107

5. Answer the following questions (with or without the).

1. Where do you go to change your money? (bank)

2. Where do you go if you are not well? (doctor)

3. What are you listening to? (radio)

4. Where did you go last night? (cinema)

5. Do you live in a town? (no - countryside)

6. Who should pay more taxes? (rich people)

7. What are you going to do after leaving school? (go - university)

8. Is Paul ill? (yes - hospital)

6. Make sentences from the given words (add the if necessary).

1. I/can/cook/Italian food/very well
2. Frank/play/guitar
3. We/went/visit/Eiffel Tower
4. Pizza/be/my favourite food
5. We/should/help/poor
6. Americans/be/really nice!
7. You/collect/stamps?
8. They/like/English food?
9. I/be/against/terrorism

Can you explain, now, when we

use the and when we dont use
it? Complete the rule below:

We use the

We dont use the

108 Part 7


1. Match the idioms below with their Italian translation. Use the dictionary, if

Idiom Italian translation

1. in a nutshell a. perdere il lavoro
2. to get the sack b. essere molto goffo
3. to have a great time c. marinare la scuola
4. to be all fingers and thumbs d. in breve
5. to play truant e. pensare in modo creativo
6. to start from scratch f. chi spende il proprio tempo incollato alla TV
7. a couch potato g. non avere nulla da fare
8. to think outside the box h. divertirsi
9. to be at loose ends i. cominciare da zero

2. Use idioms from the previous activity to fill in the gaps. Choose suitable verb
a. Matthew is giving his mother so much trouble. He has been .
from school for a whole month.
b. He spends all of his time on the sofa watching TV. What a !
c. The new manager, is an extremely creative person. She constantly proves
d. Young people can easily get in trouble when they ..
e. He built his own house; he

3. Translate these sentences into English.

a. Ivans granpa loves him so dearly; that child is the apple of his eyes.

b. David didnt listen to what I was telling him. Apparently, he had other fish to fry.

c. You know Im not good at drawing! Thats not my cup of tea.

d. Shes so lucky! She was born with a silver spoon in her mouth.

4. Complete these sentences with an idiom from those suggested below.

at the cutting edge - pulling my leg - make ends meet - caught red-handed -
Make yourself at home! got the wrong end of the stick

a. They saw Brian and me arriving together at the party and ..

b. Her husband doesnt earn much. Despite that, she manages to
c. Italian designers are usually of fashion.
d. This time she couldnt lie any more. She was
e. I dont love being mocked at, so stop !
f. Please, come in!
Translation skills 109


1. How do you translate these false friends into Italian? Use the dictionary, if
necessary, then write a sentence for each word.
Word Italian translation Sentence
1. actual
2. blank
3. confront (v.)
4. economical
5. education
6. eventually
7. parents
8. presumption
9. pretend (v.)
10. scholar

2. Replace the false friends in blue italics with words more suited to the context.
1. Rose and John are my favourite auntie and uncle. Theyre the best parents ever!
2. The director asked me to firm the new contract.
3. My grandparents have a big factory in the countryside. They love being in touch
with nature!
4. Flora is a worker in a furniture fabric.
5. You can buy this book in a library.
6. She advised us that she couldnt come to the meeting.
7. My favourite camera is my bedroom.
8. The French Revolution marked an important stage in story.
9. Vita dei Campi is a collection of novels by the Italian writer Giovanni Verga.
10. Were studying really hard; tomorrow well repeat the last chapter of the book.


Complete the sentences with suitable words.
A. profession - career - job - work
1. I really love painting! I think Ill make a . out of it.
2. After graduating, students interested in the university .
usually take a PhD.
3. He is so happy because he has just got a . as a sales manager
for a big company.
4. She has to go to .. very early tomorrow, so she cant come
with us.
110 Part 7

B. house - home
1. Were moving to our new . next month.
2. I love coming back . after a long, exhausting day!

C. travel - journey - trip - voyage

1. I have very fond memories of my school . to Greece.
2. The . will last about 4 hours.
3. We bought lots of souvenirs on our . abroad.
4. The . to the islands was amazing! The sea was calm and the
ship was pretty new and comfortable.


Translate these sentences, paying special attention to the words in red bold type.
1. lezione
a. Le lezioni universitarie sono generalmente interessanti.
b. A scuola le lezioni erano pi facili.

2. seguire
a. facile seguire il corso di matematica.
b. Seguiamo molti corsi alluniversit.

3. istruzione
a. Bisogna seguire attentamente le istruzioni per far funzionare questa macchina.
b. Listruzione molto importante per me.

4. materia
a. La mia materia preferita linglese.
b. Limmigrazione stata materia di discussione al convegno.

5. paese
a. Vivo in un paese piccolo, ma tranquillo.
b. La Norvegia un paese nel nord dellEuropa.

6. citt
a. Daniele viene da una piccola citt della Svezia.
b. La vita nelle grandi citt molto frenetica.
Translation skills 111

In English two nouns can be put together to form a compound word. The former will
have the grammar function of an adjective and will therefore be always singular, as
adjectives are invariable in English.
For instance, if we have to translate the Italian phrase lezione sui computer, we will
say computer lesson, not computers lesson.
There are some exceptions, however, as sports centre (in Italian: centro sportivo).

English compound words can be translated into Italian:

~ with a noun and an adjective: post office ufficio postale
~ with two nouns, often linked by a preposition: toothache mal di denti
~ with a single noun: newspaper giornale

Some English compound words are connected by a dash, as in dry-cleaning (lavaggio a


Compound words are also used in English to specify the type, brand or manufacturer
of a product. In Italian too a similar structure is used, but the word order will be the
For example: Its a Nokia cell phone.
un telefono cellulare Nokia.

1. Translate into Italian these English compound words.

apple pie coffee cup
sunglasses headmaster
heating system traffic lights
lecture-room bookshop

2. Transform these expressions into compound words.

Ex.: the centre of the city the city centre
a. a party of farewell
b. shop of computer games
c. the front of the lake
d. the handbook of Economics
e. the laboratory of Physics
f. the life at night
g. the screen of the computer

3. Now translate these expressions from Italian into English.

a. fornitura di energia
b. la lezione di yoga
c. il corso di matematica
d. la prova scritta desame
e. raccolta dei rifiuti
f. raccolta porta a porta
112 Part 7

Preposition Use Examples

+ mesi in July; in September

+ anni in 1989; in 2012
in + stagioni in summer; in the winter of 2008
+ parte del giorno in the morning; in the afternoon
durata in a minute; in two weeks time

+ parte del giorno at night; at the weekend

+ ora del giorno at 6 oclock; at midday
+ festivit at Christmas; at Easter
+ frasi fisse at the same time

+ giorni settimanali on Wednesday

+ date on (the) 8th (of) May
+ festivit on Easter Sunday
+ parte del giorno on Saturday afternoon

after dopo qualcosa after classes

da quanto tempo
ago two years ago
qualcosa accaduto

before prima di qualcosa before April

between il tempo tra due punti between June and September

by entro un tempo specifico by Wednesday; by the end of the month

nel corso di un periodo di

during during summer holidays

for durata for two weeks

from to from Monday to Friday

un periodo di tempo tra un
from punto e laltro from Monday till/until Friday

to orario twenty to seven (6:40)

non oltre un determinato

up to up to now; up to three times a week

entro un periodo di
within within 24 hours

No preposition: today - yesterday - tomorrow - the day after tomorrow - the day
before yesterday - last night - last week - two weeks ago - next
month - yesterday morning - tomorrow evening - this evening -
Translation skills 113


Preposition Meaning Examples

above sopra My town is 200 metres above sea level.

across attraverso Go across Lexington street.

after dopo Please, after you.

against contro Im against violence.
along lungo Walk along this avenue.
among tra (pi cose o persone) Jane is the brightest student among us.
around attorno, intorno They wandered around the town.
behind dietro The car park is behind the school.
below sotto Please write below this line.
beside accanto The tobacconists is beside the cinema.
between tra (due cose o persone) David is sitting between Julia and Mark.
by accanto, vicino Come and sit by me.
close to vicino We live close to the train station.
down gi Go down this road.
from da Frank is from Austria.
in front of davanti The bus stops in front of the university.
inside dentro Please put this card inside the envelope.
into in, dentro Translate this passage into English.
near vicino The library is quite near.
next to accanto a The post office is next to the pub.
off da I have to get off at this bus stop.
onto su, sopra The dog jumped onto the chair.
opposite di fronte The cinema is opposite the restaurant.
out of fuori da We live out of the city centre.
outside fuori, allesterno Could you wait outside, please?
over sopra They have built a new bridge over the river.
past dopo He walked past me.
round intorno We sat round the table and talked at length.
through attraverso Im halfway through the book.
to a, verso We go to university every other day.
114 Part 7


1. Look up these phrases - adjective plus Problemi di traduzione

preposition - in the dictionary and write one dallitaliano allinglese
sentence with each of them.
Spesso, rispetto allitaliano,
1. ricco di rich in inglese gli aggettivi
2. diverso da different reggono preposizioni
diverse. In tal caso utile
3. interessato a interested
consultare il dizionario
4. bravo a good bilingue.
5. esperto in expert
6. tremante di shivering

2. How do you translate the following phrases into English?

a. a letto
b. con la macchina
c. andare a casa
d. vestito di rosso
e. innamorato (di)
f. in disordine
g. avere circa ventanni
h. scrivere a penna
i. uno su tre

3. Read the following pairs of sentences and find out the difference between the
given prepositions.
with/by = con I go to school by bus.
I go to school with my schoolmates.
When do we use with?
When do we use by?

from/by = da The test will be checked by the teacher.

Carol sent me a postcard from a nice Greek island.
When do we use from?
When do we use by?
Translation skills 115

4. Complete the following sentences with from or by.

1. Guernica was painted Pablo Picasso.
2. I dont know where Marks friend is .
3. The bank is open Monday to Friday.
4. Shes American birth.
5. Ive read To the Lighthouse, a Modernist novel Virginia Woolf.
6. She often borrows clothes her sister.
7. The room is heated electricity.
8. He comes home work at 5 oclock.
9. Steve was amazed the surprise party organized for him.
10. My university is not far here.

5. Complete these sentences with with or by.

1. How do you go to work? - bus, usually.
2. Im going to the gym Pam tomorrow afternoon.
3. Are you coming us?
4. He became rich selling a new product.
5. I discussed about my research work my teacher.
6. What did she mean that?

6. Complete this text with in, on or at.

I love summer. I play tennis 1 weekends and I go out in the evenings.
I go 2 holiday to Italy with my friends 3 summer. We usually
go 4 August because its hot and sunny. We get up 5 seven
oclock 6 the morning because we like going to the beach early. I dont
like the winter season very much because its always cold and wet 7
London 8 winter. I like December because its Christmas time and also
because my birthday is 9 December. This year my birthday will be
10 a Saturday.

7. Complete the sentences with the prepositions from the box.

about - at (x3) - by - from - with - in (x3) - of - on - to (x3) - until - for

1. They usually come school bus.

2. It often rains a lot April.
3. Is she going to meet him Sunday?
4. She starts work the morning 9.00.
5. We went Thailand Christmas.
6. Jim wasn't home last night.
7. We lived in England 1989 1995.
8. Wait me here I come back.
9. I'd like a cup tea milk, please.
10. Do they know much computers?
116 Part 7


Some phrasal verbs (verb + preposition)
agree on something come back speak out take back
agree with somebody disagree with speak up take in
ask after go ahead stand by take off
ask around go back stand for take on
bear out go for stand up take over
bear with go on take after wake up
build up go out take away warm up

1. Fill in the gaps with an appropriate phrasal verb from the list above.
1. ADSL is an acronym. It Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line.
2. Hurry up, its late! My plane is going to in half an hour.
3. Whenever I can, I a walk in the park.
4. We have different points of view, so I often Frank.
5. I forgot my purse at home, so I had to and fetch it.
6. Could you , please? I cant hear you!
7. Please, . me; just let me explain.
8. Dont stop singing: . !

2. Which prepositions go with the verbs suggested? For each phrasal verb obtained
write a sentence (use the dictionary, if necessary).

a flu early Ex.: I got up early this morning. (get up)

over up (get on)
get (get over)


with my

to look
(look )
(look )
(look )

to turn
(turn )
(turn )
(turn )
(turn )
Translation skills 117


The following activity shows a few uses of the verb to be. Translate the sentences.

Expressions with to be Examples in Italian English translation

Ho freddo. Potresti
be cold
chiudere la finestra?
Sono molto bravo a
be good at (-ing)
parlare in tedesco.
Se hai fame, prendi un
be hungry
Sara non esperta in
be into (something)
questo settore.
Henry innamorato di
be in love with
tua cugina.
Sei sempre in ritardo per
be late (for)
la lezione.
tardi! Non faremo in
be on time
tempo per la cerimonia!
Chiedi a Luca; molto
be practical with
pratico con i computer.
Ho sete! Andiamo a
be thirsty
prendere una bibita!

Expressions with to have

have a bath have a shower have an appointment
have a drink have a snack have a class/lesson/lecture
have a rest have a party have an exam
have a competition have a meal have breakfast/lunch/dinner

Fill the gaps using one of the expressions above.

1. I know its a bad habit, but I never in the morning.
2. Were going to the cafeteria to . Do you want to come?
3. Do you always on your birthday?
4. He has to study hard. He next week.
5. What time do you usually ?
6. I with the dentist at 4 oclock.

Wishes with have

Have a nice holiday! Have a safe flight! Have a nice weekend!
Have a safe trip! Have a nice/great day! Have a nice Sunday!

Composition skills

La proposizione, in inglese, strutturata secondo un ordine piuttosto preciso, che
prevede tipicamente un soggetto - sempre espresso - un verbo ed un complemento.
Subject verb complement
These students passed the exam.
We are attending four courses.

Esistono diversi modi per collegare due proposizioni indipendenti:
~ utilizzando un linker appropriato, come, ad esempio:
to add an idea and
to show contrast but, yet
to present a choice or (either or), nor (neither nor)
to indicate result so
to indicate reason because

~ usando il punto e virgola (semicolon);

Independent clause semicolon independent clause
Computers are now very popular ; everyone has got a PC.

~ scegliendo una transitional word:

Writers purpose Transitional word
and, moreover, in addition (to), also, besides,
To add an idea furthermore, what is more, another point is
so, therefore, thus, as a result/consequence
To indicate result
(of), consequently, so/such that
To indicate an unexpected result however, nevertheless, still
first, second, next, then, after that, finally,
To show time or sequence before, after, meanwhile, when, whenever,
as, until, as soon as, subsequently
but, yet, instead, while, whereas, though,
To show contrast although, even though, however, on the
other hand (often used after: on the one

120 Part 8

hand), in contrast (to/with), conversely, on

the contrary, differently from
To show similarity like, likewise, similarly, in the same way
as, because, because of, due to, for, owing to,
To show reason
since, for this reason, that is why
To emphasize or intensify in fact, indeed, on the contrary
To give an example for example, for instance
To explain or restate that is, in other words
To generalize in general, overall, all in all
To summarize in conclusion, to sum up


as far as I am concerned as for me
as I see it for my part
from my point of view in my opinion
in my view personally
personally speaking speaking personally


1. Each of the sentences below has two independent clauses. Do the following:
a. for each clause circle the subject, underline the verb, and put two lines under the
b. in each sentence, circle the coordinator and the comma twice;
c. then tell the relationship between the two clauses: addition, contrast, choice,

Ex.: I love travelling, but my favourite destination is Spain. contrast

1. I have many friends at university, but my best friend is Ivan.

2. We met last September, and we have been friends ever since.
3. Ivan is very good at English, so he often helps me with this subject.
4. After lectures, we have lunch at the university refectory or we just have a coffee
in a bar.

2. Each sentence below has two independent clauses, but they are not properly
punctuated. Put a semicolon between them.
1. I love listening to music it helps me relax.
2. We had a meal at the Chinese restaurant last night it was really delicious.
3. Susan often goes to the cinema she loves adventure films.
4. Pablo Picasso was Spanish he was born in Malaga.
Composition skills 121

3. Read the following sentences, then connect them with a semicolon and a
transitional word; put a comma after the transitional word. Use therefore,
however, moreover.
1. Some people do not like social networks, as they prefer face-to-face
Using social networks can help you find old friends.
2. I tried to contact you the whole day.
My email service was out of order.
3. Speaking a foreign language helps you to get in touch with many people.
It helps you a lot when travelling abroad.
4. Knowing about world events is very important.
I read the newspaper and watch the news every day.
5. I like going to the cinema.
Sometimes I dont have time for it.
6. We learn a lot from our classes.
We attend them regularly.

4. Choose one of the following topics to write about:

~ the advantages of the Internet;
~ an important city in your country.

Write six pairs of sentences about the topic. Each sentence should have only one
clause. The sentences in each pair should be related to each other.

5. Write a short composition about what you think are the greatest technological
inventions. Use specific reasons and examples to support your opinion (about
200 words). Dont forget to organize your compositions into paragraphs,
including an introduction, some middle paragraphs each developing an idea
and a conclusion. Use connectors too.

6. Fill in the blanks choosing the appropriate linker among those listed below:
In conclusion - For instance - because - However
In addition to - Besides - indeed - While - Despite

The twentieth century saw great changes, 1 there were many

important innovations and technological advancements.
,2 it is worth remembering Neil Armstrongs space travel (he
was the first man who stepped onto the moon in 1969), the progress of
international travels, the improvements in health care and many more.
,3 in my opinion, the greatest achievement of the modern
world is the Internet. It is a computer network born in the USA in the 1970s for
military purposes. 4 in the early 1900 there were only a few
hundred web pages, today there are billions.
122 Part 8

The Internet is everywhere; it has dramatically changed our way of living and working.
It brings about many advantages; ,5 you can use it to look for
information, thanks to the useful search programs. ,6 you can
download programs and send or receive emails.
7 these advantages, there are also some drawbacks, for
example, the possibility of catching viruses. 8 that, by using
the Internet too much, people run the risk of forgetting how to communicate face to
face and of being glued to the computer.
,9 I believe that the Internet is the greatest innovation of the
last century and it can help us for many purposes, but we must use it in the best
possible way.


A paragraph is a small unit of writing that focuses on one idea. It generally has three
1. a topic sentence (the main idea in the paragraph, including the topic and the
controlling idea, that is the writers attitude about the topic);
2. a support (it explains, describes or develop the main idea of the topic sentence);
3. a conclusion (it usually summarizes or comments on the main idea).

Fill in the blanks with suitable verbs from below, then divide the text into
tries needs goes (x 2) relaxes studies works (x 2) spends
practises attends has been attending is (x 2) likes comes back

Mark is a nineteen-year-old university student. Every morning, from Monday to Friday,

he 1 to university by bus. At university, first he 2
lectures, then he 3 with his friends. He 4 university
for five months by now, since last September. In the afternoon, he5
home; if he is too tired, Mark 6 sitting on his comfortable armchair
and reading one of his favourite books or he 7 with his computer for
long hours. However, he usually 8 different sports in his leisure time:
baseball, football, and also riding. In winter, when he 9 to the
mountains, he 10 many hours skiing. Mark 11
indeed a very busy and active boy! Since he 12 travelling the world
especially by plane he always 13 money and 14 to earn
it by doing some part-time jobs. On Saturday and Sunday evenings, for instance, he
15 as a waiter in a restaurant till late in the morning. His dream
16 graduating as soon as possible and spending an unforgettable
holiday with a beautiful girl on a tropical island, where the sun is always shining!
Composition skills 123


Quando si scrive una composizione importante esprimere chiaramente le idee. A tal

fine utile strutturare la composizione nelle seguenti parti:
~ introduzione illustra largomento trattato e contiene la tesi (thesis
statement), ossia lidea dellautore su tale argomento. Pu
consistere in uno o pi paragrafi;
~ paragrafi centrali i supporting paragraphs sono collegati alla tesi espressa
nellintroduzione. Ciascun paragrafo, introdotto da una topic
sentence (una frase che sintetizza il contenuto dellintero
paragrafo), discute un aspetto dellidea principale affermata
~ conclusione logicamente collegata alle parti precedenti e pu
sintetizzare i punti principali del saggio; ritornare alla tesi
del saggio affermata nellintroduzione; esprimere una
previsione relativa allargomento discusso o dare un


a. Prima di scrivere una composizione, cerca di:

~ raccogliere le idee relative al tema esaminato (brainstorming) e annotale senza
preoccuparti troppo della forma (non fondamentale in questa fase);
~ raggruppa le idee simili: ci ti aiuter a costruire i paragrafi;

b. Scrivi la composizione:
- a questo punto usa le informazioni precedentemente raccolte, selezionando le
pi importanti;
- organizza le tue frasi in base allidea che sviluppano;
- decidi lidea principale che vuoi discutere: ci ti aiuter a scrivere la thesis
statement della tua introduzione;
- organizza i paragrafi sviluppando, in ognuno di essi, una topic sentence. Poi
aggiungi motivi, dettagli, ragioni, ecc. Ricorda di andare a capo per ogni nuovo
~ usa i linkers: le congiunzioni possono aiutarti a dare maggiore coesione e
coerenza alla tua composizione;
~ anche la punteggiatura pu creare questo effetto.

c. Rivedi la tua composizione, controllando errori grammaticali, sintattici, di

ortografia (spelling) e di punteggiatura.
124 Part 8

Read this email and add punctuation whenever appropriate (capital letters,
apostrophes, full stops, commas, exclamation and question marks, etc.).
dear mary
how are you i hope you are well im fine
im writing to invite you to come and stay with us for the next summer holiday
as you know i have a wonderful house in Capri im staying there for 15 days in july
there will be also my sister myriam and two old friends of ours
if you come well be very happy
Capri is a wonderful island its charming and lively in the morning we can stay on the
beach I know that you love swimming and relaxing in the sun while in the evening we
can go to discos or clubs
im sure next summer will be fantastic
i hope you will be with us
please write to me soon

Choose one of the following topics and write an essay about it (200 words).
1. Computers have become quite widespread today. Write an essay discussing the role
of the computer in your (university) studies and in your life.
2. Write an essay about the importance of technology in todays society.
3. Write an essay about a book, a film or a TV program that you know and like.
Support your ideas with reasons and examples.
4. Which is, in your opinion, the best age of life? Give reasons and provide suitable
5. Advertisement has become quite widespread today among companies. Do you think
it useful or just a waste of money and time? Write an essay expressing your
opinions, supported by specific examples and experiences.
6. The twentieth century saw great changes. In your opinion, what is one change that
should be remembered about the last century? Use specific reasons and examples to
support your opinion.
7. In some countries, teenagers have jobs while they are still students. Do you think
this is a good idea? Support your opinion by using specific reasons and details.
8. Describe, in a short essay your ideal university. You can refer to: facilities, location,
services, opportunities, courses, etc. Use specific reasons and details to develop your
9. What do you want most in a friend: someone who is intelligent, someone who has a
sense of humour, or someone who is reliable? Which one of these characteristics is
most important to you? Use reasons and specific examples to explain your choice.
Composition skills 125


Lo scopo di un saggio argomentativo discutere un argomento, sostenere una tesi

ed infine persuadere il lettore della validit delle proprie opinioni.
Per sviluppare una tesi bisogna considerare punti di vista diversi, presentandoli in
modo oggettivo. Alla fine del saggio si pu esprimere la propria opinione personale
e/o suggerire possibili soluzioni, come risultato logico dellelaborazione/sviluppo delle
idee presentate.
Anche questo tipo di saggio dovrebbe essere organizzato in paragrafi, in ognuno
dei quali spiegata e discussa unidea principale. In questo caso, i quattro paragrafi
principali sono:

Lintroduzione illustra brevemente largomento e

spiega le ragioni della sua importanza.

Paragraph about
advantages (pros)
Questi paragrafi dovrebbero essere bilanciati, per
cui il numero dei vantaggi dovrebbe essere pi o
meno equivalente al numero degli svantaggi.
Paragraph about
disadvantages (cons)

La conclusione esprime la tua opinione personale

sullargomento trattato.

Dovresti iniziare raccogliendo idee (brainstorming) sullargomento oggetto di
discussione. Potrebbe essere utile riempire una tabella come questa:

Advantages Disadvantages

Dopo aver raccolto idee su ogni argomento, scrivi il tuo saggio dividendolo in

1st paragraph: Introduction

2 paragraph: Pros
3 paragraph: Cons
4th paragraph: Conclusion

Immagina di dover scrivere un saggio su questo tema:

Is face-to-face communication better or worse than other types of
communication, such as letters, emails or telephone calls?
126 Part 8

Ecco un possibile schema:

- fornisci informazioni generali sul modo in cui oggi

Introduzione avviene la comunicazione
(uno/due paragrafi) - afferma la tua tesi (meglio/peggio che in passato?/
entrambe le cose?)

Vantaggi (Pros) - illustra i vantaggi della comunicazione reale, fornendo

(uno/due paragrafi) motivi ed esempi

Svantaggi (Cons) - illustra gli svantaggi della comunicazione reale,

(uno/due paragrafi) indicando motivi ed esempi

Conclusione - afferma la tua opinione

(uno/due paragrafi) - suggerisci possibili soluzioni

Ecco un esempio di saggio argomentativo ben costruito.

Topic: What do you think about the recent quick growth of social networks? What are its
pros and cons? Illustrate your opinions in a short essay.
Social networks, the most recent form of communication, are constantly growing.
Users who log to Facebook or Twitter - two of the most famous - are 1,000,000 every
day. Facebook has been the forerunner of social networks. It is helping people all over
the world to meet new friends and find old ones.
Facebook is revolutionizing e-commerce and web marketing too. It has introduced a lot
of services since its birth; the latest, called Places, helps users to find friends
according to their position in the world. Other social networks, as Twitter, have
improved communication among companies and clients.
On the other hand, social networks have the potential to create a new virtual life for
users, so they can hide their personality. Furthermore, through the use of social
networks, they run the risk of losing their privacy and of being swindled.
I think it is important for users to share their feelings, but at the same time they
should protect their personal data; one way of doing this is using some special devices.
Personally speaking, I cant imagine a world without social networks, because they are
the future of communication.

1. E.mails and computer-based forms of communication have become largely
widespread today. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of these new forms of
2. Describe, in an essay, the pros and cons of having a well-paid, time-consuming job.
3. Speak to one or more of your friends about the use of mobile phones today. Mention
both positive and negative aspects.
4. A person you know is planning to move to your town/city. What do you think this
person would like and dislike about living in your town/city? Use specific reasons
and details to develop your essay.
Composition skills 127


Quando si scrive un saggio in cui si fanno confronti e differenze (comparison-

contrast essay) bisognerebbe evidenziare i punti in comune e quelli diversi tra le due
parti messe a confronto. I suggerimenti seguenti possono aiutarti a creare un
comparing-contrasting essay ben costruito:
1. introdurre largomento;
2. spiegare somiglianze e differenze tra i due soggetti/le due cose confrontate. Le
informazioni possono essere presentate in vari modi:
a. si pu scegliere un aspetto ed esaminarlo prima per un soggetto, poi per laltro;
b. si possono illustrare tutti gli aspetti importanti di un soggetto prima e dellaltro
c. si possono elencare e spiegare prima le somiglianze e poi le differenze tra i due
3. conclusione.

Questi punti grammaticali possono aiutarti ad esprimere paragoni e differenze:

~ forme comparative;
~ uso adeguato della punteggiatura;
congiunzioni correlative (coppie di parole o frasi che vanno insieme: both
and; not only but also; either or; neither nor);
~ congiunzioni per introdurre confronti e contrasti, utilizzate per dare coesione.


1. Speak to one of your foreign friends about similarities and differences in your
university studies.
2. Some people prefer to work for a large company. Others prefer to work for a small
company. Which would you prefer? Use specific reasons and details to develop your


Can you remember how to form the comparative and superlative forms of
adjectives? Fill in the table below.
comparative of comparative of comparative of
Adjective superlative
majority minority equality

bad worse than less bad than as bad as the worst

128 Part 8


Ecco una prova di esame con diversi errori, evidenziati dal docente attraverso luso
di simboli, spiegati nella legenda in fondo alla pagina. Correggi gli errori, poi trascrivi
la composizione, dividendola anche in paragrafi.

What role can you play as an engineer in todays society? Refer to the impact that the
skills and competences you are acquiring through your studies can have on social areas
as building, IT, telecommunications and environmental development.

ww syn
I study engineer at Benevento university because I like making
ww ww
plans. I have already given an informatics exam. I hope to start
wt sp wo
work just finished studing at university. In the department
engineering there are many technical subjects. I hope to pass all the
examinations and one day I hope to become a good engineer. So I
hope to work in an important office. I also like the urban and I am
ww syn wo
following a course very exciting. In the department engineering
ww ww
there are some difficult subjects like fisica, mats, chimica, ecc. I
would like to build an important structure, like a skyscraper or a
important bridge. I am very passionate about this university in my
opinion may be a way to change things.

awk awkward sentence or expression gr faulty grammar

p faulty punctuation pron missing or faulty pronoun
sp spelling mistake syn faulty syntax
t wrong verb tense wm word missing
wo wrong order wv wrong verb form
ww wrong word
Composition skills 129


There are two main types of letters or emails you can write:
1. informal: usually written to a person you know, such as a relative or a friend;
2. formal: when you write to people you dont know or that you dont know well.
What distinguishes formal from informal letters and emails are style and language.


A letter generally consists
1. Senders address Antonio Forte of six parts:
Via Aurelia, 601
1. Senders address
00100, Rome
Italy 2. Date
3. Opening greeting
2. Date 21st June, 2016 4. Body of the letter
5. Closing of the letter
3. Opening greeting Dear Sally, 6. Signature

4. The body of the letter How are you? I received Here is how a letter should
your letter on 15th June, be written.

In personal correspondence

British people write their
address (1) at the top right
5. Closing of the letter Love,
hand side of the letter.
6. Signature Antonio The date (2) is written
under the senders address.
Remember to write the full name of the months and not to confuse the American date
and the British date. Americans write the name of the month first and then the day,
whereas the British do exactly the opposite.
If you write to a person you do not know, you can begin the letter using Dear Sir or
Dear Madam and if you know him/her you can use Dear Doctor White, Dear Mrs
Brown, etc.
You can conclude the letter with: Yours faithfully or with equivalent expressions.
In personal letters (i.e. to friends, parents, relatives) you can use Dear followed by the
name of the receiver (3).
The body of the letter (4) must contain the reasons for writing and can be subdivided
into paragraphs.
You can conclude the letter with Lots of Love, With Love, All the best, Yours (5).
The final part of a letter is the signature (6). If you write to people you dont know
youll write your name and surname, but if you write to persons you know well you
only need to write your first name.
130 Part 8


Informal letter Formal letter

~ never write your name at the top of a ~ never write your name at the top
~ letter; of a letter;
~ write your own address on the right-hand ~ write your own address above the
side and write the address and name or date but not the address of the
position of the person you are writing to person you are writing to;
below that on the left-hand side; ~ the date can be abbreviated and
~ write the date in full underneath your own goes under your address.

In formal letters you In informal letters you
~ use Sir or Madam, or the persons title and ~ use first name only;
surname; ~ use I/we;
~ prefer the passive form; ~ can use contractions and
~ do not use contractions or abbreviations; abbreviations;
~ use single-word verbs, formal linking ~ can use phrasal verbs, idioms and
words and phrases; colloquial language;
~ use long sentences, impersonal style; ~ use short sentences;
~ sign with your full name and then print it. ~ sign with your first name only.


Emailing is usually an informal method of communicating.

Here are some useful tips to keep in mind when writing an
~ limit line length to about 60 characters;
~ be clear and concise;
~ do not quote back an entire message;
~ do not attach large files;
~ avoid spamming;
~ check spelling.
Composition skills 131

When writing a letter/email, it is necessary to distinguish between formal and informal
language. The table below provides an overview of typical, common sentences and
expressions used to start and end formal and informal letters/emails.


If you dont know the receivers

Dear Sir or Madam,
Dear Sir,
Opening line

Dear Jane, Dear Sirs,

Hi Jane, Dear Madam,

If you know the receivers name:

Dear Mr and Mrs Kean,
Dear Professor Blake,

Dear Dr Newark,
Dear Ms Hallmark,

1. Ive just received your letter 1. I am writing in connection with

and Im writing to
Opening sentences

2. I was happy/surprised/sorry 2. Further to your last email/letter

to hear that/about
3. This is just to say thank you 3. Thank you for your email/letter
for/apologize for/say how of
sorry I am about
4. Im sorry I havent written
for a while.
5. Sorry I havent been in touch
for ages
Closing sentences

(Im) looking forward to seeing 1. Do not hesitate to contact us

you. again if you need any further
Please write soon. information.
Write to me soon. 2. Please feel free to contact me if
Write back soon. you have any further questions.
Be well.

Take care of yourself.

Yours faithfully,
Yours sincerely,
Closing line

Yours, Sincerely,
Love (from),
Kind regards,
Best Wishes,
With kindest regards,
Best wishes,
All the best,

N.B.: If you start with a name (e.g. Dear Mr Gordon) you should end with Yours
sincerely. If you start with Dear Sir or Madam you should end with Yours

Learning skills


Before going through the activities suggested in this section, take a few minutes to
answer these questions.
1. Do you use any dictionary?
2. If yes, which one/ones? (Italian monolingual, English monolingual, Italian-English
3. When?
4. Why do you use the dictionary?
5. How do you think it can help you?
a. b.
b. d.

Here are some activities which will help you understand how useful the dictionary is!

1. Fill in the table with the Past Simple and Past Participle forms of the verbs. Add their
Italian meaning too.

Infinitive Italian meaning Past Simple Past Participle

to begin iniziare I began begun
to build
to do
to drink
to eat
to fight
to forbid
to grow
to have
to lead
to leave
to make
to mean
to meet
to ride
to shine
to sleep
to steal

134 Part 9

to swear
to take
to teach
to tear
to think
to throw
to understand
to wear
to weep

2. Add -ing to these verbs and write their Italian meaning.

Verb -ing form Italian meaning

3. Whats the plural of these words?*

boy theory bull
university calf church
child elephant foot
inch wife knife
lady sheep leaf
thief mouse teacher
scarf tooth person
louse wolf woman
ox self deer

* Add -s to the singular form of the word: toast toasts

Irregular plurals for words ending in -ss, -x, -ch, -sh, -z, -s, o* add -es.
Some shortened words like piano, radio, disco, euro add only -s.
Nouns ending in -fe, -f, -ef form their plural in -ves.
Nouns ending in -y, after a consonant, change -y in -i, then add -es.
Add more words while attending the English Course.
Learning skills 135

4. Some words deriving from Latin, follow its rules for the plural.*
word phonetic script Italian meaning

* Add more words while attending the English Course.

5. What is the grammar function of the following words? (noun, verb, adjective, adverb,
Word Its a/an Italian meaning
angry adjective arrabbiato/a

6. Look up in the dictionary the different Italian meanings of these adjectives.

mean meek
strict extrovert
relaxing involving
boring excellent
poor gorgeous
terrific demanding
dramatically amazing
136 Part 9

7. Write some phrasal verbs you can make with the following verbs.
a. come
b. make
c. speak
d. turn

8. Which words can you make from ?

a. cloud
b. happy
c. immigrate
d. job
e. learn
f. load ...........
g. perform
h. train

9. Match a word in A with a word in B.

1. make a. the bus
2. enter b. a letter
3. take c. homework
4. break d. the train
5. do e. the room
6. get f. a promise
7. look g. a call
8. write h. up

10. Whats the opposite of these expressions?

a. dark colours
b. a mild climate
c. a tall woman
d. an odd number
e. a calm sea
f. a high income
g. a sweet fruit
h. good-tempered
i. open-minded
Learning skills 137


Before preparing a presentation, you should carefully select the information you have about
the topic you wish to discuss.
To be effective, your presentation should be structured into three main parts, each
introducing and logically developing the ideas you wish to illustrate to the audience. You
should inform and interest it, interacting with it as your presentation progresses.
Include enough information to make communication easier and, if possible, use pictures,
graphs, tables to visually assist your audience.
As the visual aspect is uppermost, carefully select the size, colour and type of the characters
used to type your text. It shouldnt be too small or set against a background the same colour
as the text itself: this can actually make it quite hard for your audience to read the words.
A. How to start your presentation
B. How to develop it
C. How to end it

A. Introduce your presentation.

Before giving a presentation, you should introduce the topic, just to give your audience
an idea of what you are going to discuss. You can identify and briefly introduce the
points/themes you have included in your presentation. These signal phrases may be
In this presentation Ill focus on / Ill look at
My presentation will be divided into two parts.
The first part will deal with/illustrate , while the second part will discuss

B. Develop the points you want to discuss.

At this stage, you should explain in detail each point identified before. Follow the logical
order of your outline. Dont forget to signal the main stages in the development of your
talk; whenever you move from one point or section to another, signal it. Here are some
useful expressions:
I shall discuss a few aspects of
I will treat this issue from a specific angle

C. End your presentation.

The conclusion summarizes briefly what you have said in your talk, and can hint at
possible links with other issues, at future developments of the issue discussed, etc.

Check also the expressions listed in the following verbal functions sheet.
138 Part 9

These words and phrases might be useful when taking part in a formal discussion in English.

Agreeing Disagreeing

Yes, I agree. But on the other hand

I definitely agree with you. Im afraid I dont agree.
Absolutely! I dont think thats true.
I couldnt agree more. I totally disagree.
Responding to someone interrupting
Excuse me, but Let me finish what I am saying
Can I just say something?
Sorry to interrupt, but
I can see that, but

Checking Checking for others agreement

Are you with me?
Do you agree?
Okay so far?

Going back to the topic of discussion Moving on to the next issue

Lets get back to the point of Lets move on to
discussion. Lets go on to whats next.

Providing alternatives Adding ideas to others

Yes, and also
On the other hand
Yes, and

Taking things into consideration Illustrating your point

If you remember For instance,

Asking for clarification Giving your point of view

What do you mean exactly? Well, I think that
What do you mean by ? In my opinion
Could you possibly speak more slowly? Personally, I think that
Could you write that down for me? Personally, Id like to see
Could you give an example?
Im afraid I didnt quite catch that.
Im not sure I see what you mean.

Backtracking Summarizing

Should we go back to the point you Thats all then.

made earlier?

Mmm, Ill have to think about that.
Good/interesting question.
Learning skills 139


Fill in this word table with suitable words.

sport person place equipment

athletics track
cycling racing cyclist
football footballer
golf course
tennis tennis player court

Complete this word diagram with appropriate words. Add branches for new words.


places subjects
attending lectures

taking notes


1. Which of these words is most suited for each sentence?

employ, employer, employee, employed, unemployed, employment, unemployment

1. Ive just obtained an interesting job as an of a big firm.

2. Candidates were personally interviewed by the
3. This software firm is looking for young engineers to
4. is one of the big issues in our country.
5. The rate has not improved significantly over the last few
6. Unfortunately Mike doesnt work yet. Hes currently
7. Many local workers are in the tourism industry.
140 Part 9



Fill in this mind map with personal ideas about sports.

easy or difficult to
practice sports?
sports what I think

about sport sports I know
(championship, world/
European Cups, etc.)

my favourite
the sports/team/
player/athlete I prefer

the equipment I need

where and when I
practice it


human resources
(wages, training)
innovations assets

stakeholders government,
the firm
local authorities

the press
other firms actions*

* Creative actions
Actions are considered creative when they produce something that is original. Creativity
occurs within structured systems of social actions. Nowadays, it is necessary to emphasize
the concept of social creativity that implies factors such as information and knowledge.
Technology is a factor that can enhance creativity and design development. These indices
are called Technology, Talent, and Tolerance, summarized with the acronym 3Ts.

* Local development






BrE & AmE



~ To learn idioms in AmE

~ To learn idioms in BrE


Scienze matematiche e informatiche

Scienze fisiche

Scienze chimiche

Scienze della terra

Scienze biologiche

Scienze mediche

Scienze agrarie e veterinarie

Ingegneria civile e architettura

Ingegneria industriale e dellinformazione

AREA Scienze dellantichit, filologicoletterarie e storicoartistiche

Scienze storiche, filosofiche, pedagogiche e psicologiche

Scienze giuridiche

Scienze economiche e statistiche

Scienze politiche e sociali

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on behalf of Aracne editrice S.r.l., Rome