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Italian A-Level

Spanish A-Level The Bedford Sixth Form

Qualification: A-Level | Exam board: Edexcel

Modern language courses are designed to provide practical and enjoyable lifelong skills, whether used in the workplace or for leisure.

Speaking another language really makes you stand out from the crowd. You will study a range of social issues and political, historical and artistic culture within Italy. You will learn to speak and write in Italian in a range of situations and to express facts and opinions.

The study of modern languages can lead to a variety of careers both in this country and abroad.

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Course content

Theme One: Changes in Italian society, this theme covers social issues and trends, in the context of Italy only.

  • Nature and the environment: pollution, renewable energy resources and recycling.
  • Education: the Italian school system and aspects of university life.
  • Workplace: working life in Italy, attitudes towards work, and the Italian economy.

Theme Two: Artistic and political culture in Italian-speaking countries/communities, this theme covers artistic culture (through music, and festivals and traditions) and political and artistic culture (through media) helping you to broaden your knowledge of life in these societies.

  • Music: changes and evolution, impact on popular culture.
  • Media: freedom of speech, written and online press, impact on society and politics.
  • Festivals and traditions: customs, traditions, celebrations.

Literary Text: You will study a film or novel in depth and produce written critical responses that relate to aspects such as literary technique, key themes, characterisation and social context.

Theme Three: Immigration and multicultural society in Italy, this theme covers social issues and trends, set in the context of Italy only.

  • Positive impact of immigration within Italian society: financial and cultural contribution by migrants.
  • Challenges linked to the immigration and inclusion: minorities and exclusion.
  • The north south divide.
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Course Content

Theme Four: From Fascism to the Present Day, this theme is set in the context of Italy only.

  • The rise to power of Mussolini
  • Fascism during World War II
  • From Dictatorship to Democracy

Literary Study: You will study a film or novel in depth and produce written critical responses that relate to aspects such as literary technique, key themes, characterisation and social context. Across the two years of an A-Level course you will study either two novels or one novel and a film.

Independent Research Project: You will carry out a research project to investigate a subject of your choice relating to German culture or society. This is assessed as part of the oral examination.

Additional information

What does this course prepare me for?

The Italian A-Level course is a rigorous and highly regarded option. It will help you prepare for Higher Education and enhance your employability profile.

It gives them the opportunity to learn and apply important transferable skills in critical thinking and analysis, communication and relationship-building, autonomy and resourcefulness. Students also develop an insight into language in general which enhances their confidence and accuracy in English.

In our global society the study of a modern language can lead to an improvement in employment prospects in a wide variety of careers, both in this country and abroad. Even when not specifically a requirement for a particular post, a good standard of fluency in the language of one of our most important international business partners and customers can offer further career opportunities that are not available to the monoglot.

Course support and enrichment

Students from both AS and A-Level courses will be expected to carry out a number of independent tasks and assignments. You may also have the opportunity to take part in national conferences or be involved with guest-speakers or in trips abroad.


You will be assessed on the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing in Italian. You will sit your Italian exams at the end of Year Two.

Paper One: Listening, reading and translation (40% of qualification)

A two hour written examination covering all four themes: a listening assessment with a range of comprehension questions; a reading assessment with a range of text and comprehension questions; a passage to translate from Italian into English.

Paper Two: Written response to works and translation (30% of qualification)

Two hours and 40 minutes written assessment: essay style questions on the two works studied (one film and one book), and a translation from English to Italian.

Paper Three: Speaking (30% of qualification)

23 minute assessment (including five minutes preparation): speaking examination based on one of the four themes, with a stimulus card as a basis for conversation; a presentation and discussion based on the student’s Independent Research Project.

Entry requirements

Some of our subjects are subject to standard entry requirement and some have additional requirements. Please see below:

Subject specific entry requirements

  • 6 in Italian

Standard entry requirements

  • At least five GCSEs at grades 9-4 including English Language and Maths (one Vocational or Technical qualification at Merit or above may be counted)


  • At least grade 4 (or Merit for Vocational or Technical qualifications) in any subject(s) that you have taken at GCSE and wish to continue studying at Level 3


  • Average GCSE (best 8) of at least 4 (38 on the old points table)


  • Grade 4 (or Merit), at least, in any subject previously studied
  • Students will take either 3 A-Level subjects or 1 Diploma subject with 1 A-Level
September 2024

Apply now!

Applications for a September 2024 start at The Bedford Sixth Form are open now! Apply now and achieve great things.

Please note: Applications will close on Friday 31 May 2024. Applications made after this date will be added to a waiting list.