The information listed below is a direct excerpt from the 2013-14 Course Catalog.
Published annually, the Course Catalog sets out the requirements of the academic programs--the majors, minors, and concentrations. Each Bryn Mawr student must declare her major before the end of her sophomore year. Students may also declare a minor or a concentration, but neither is required for the A.B. degree. Students must comply with the requirements published in the Course Catalog at the time when they declare the major, minor and/or concentration.
The Course Catalog also sets out the College requirements. Students must comply with the College requirements published at the time they enter Bryn Mawr College.
Students may complete a major or minor in Italian.
Based on an interdisciplinary approach that views culture as a global phenomenon, the aims of the major in Italian are to acquire a knowledge of Italian language and literature and an understanding of Italian culture, including cinema, art, journalism, pop culture, and music. The Department of Italian also cooperates with the Departments of French and Spanish in the Romance Languages major and with the other foreign languages in the TRICO for a major in Comparative Literature. The Italian Department cooperates also with the Center for International Studies (CIS).
Before the start of the senior year, each student must complete, with a grade of 2.0 or higher, two units of foreign language. Students may fulfill the requirement by completing two sequential semester-long courses in one language, either at the elementary level or, depending on the result of their language placement test, at the intermediate level. A student who is prepared for advanced work may complete the requirement instead with two advanced free-standing semester-long courses in the foreign language(s) in which she is proficient. Non-native speakers of English may choose to satisfy all or part of this requirement by coursework in English literature.
Major requirements in Italian are 10 courses: ITAL 101, 102 and eight additional units, at least three of which are to be chosen from the offerings on the 300 level, and no more than one from an allied field. All students must take a course on Dante (301), one on the Italian Renaissance (303 or 304) and 307, and two on modern Italian literature. Where courses in translation are offered, students may, with the approval of the department, obtain major credit provided they read the texts in Italian, submit written work in Italian and, when the instructor finds it necessary, meet with the instructor for additional discussion in Italian. Courses allied to the Italian major include, with departmental approval, all courses for major credit in ancient and modern languages and related courses in archaeology, art history, history, music, philosophy, and political science. Each student's program is planned in consultation with the department.
Students who begin their work in Italian at the 200 level will be exempted from ITAL 101 and 102.
Students may apply to complete the major with honors. The honors component requires the completion of a year-long thesis advised by a faculty member in the department.Students enroll in the senior year in ITAL 398 and ITAL 399. Application to it requires a GPA in the major of 3.7 or higher, as well as a written statement, to be submitted by 1 April of the junior year, outlining the proposed project (see further below) and indicating the faculty member who has agreed to serve as advisor. The full departmental faculty vets the proposals.
Students will write and research a 40-50 page thesis that aims to be an original contribution to Italian scholarship. As such, it must use primary evidence and also engage with the relevant secondary literature. By the end of the fall semester, students must have completed twenty pages in draft. In April they will give an oral presentation of their work of approximately forty minutes to faculty and interested students. The final draft is due on or around 20 April of the senior year and will be graded by two faculty members (one of whom is the advisor). The grade assigned is the major component of the spring semester grade. Proposals for the thesis should describe the questions being asked in the research, and how answers to them will contribute to scholarship. They must include a discussion of the primary sources on which the research will rest, as well as a preliminary bibliography of relevant secondary studies. They also must include a rough timetable indicating in what stages the work will be completed. It is expected that before submitting their proposals students will have conferred with a faculty member who has agreed to serve as advisor.
Requirements for the minor in Italian are ITAL 101, 102 and four additional units including two at the 200 level and two at the 300 level. With departmental approval, students who begin their work in Italian at the 200 level will be exempted from ITAL 101 and 102. For courses in translation, the same conditions for majors in Italian apply.
Italian majors are encouraged to study in Italy during the junior year in a program approved by the College or in approved summer programs in Italy or in the United States.