This course is for students with no previous knowledge of Italian. It aims at giving the student a complete foundation in the Italian language, with particular attention to the oral and written communication of everyday use and to all aspects of Italian culture. The course will be conducted in Italian after the first month and will involve the study of all the basic structures of the language—phonological, grammatical, syntactical—with practice in conversation, reading, composition, and translation. In addition to the basic Italian textbook and an array of supplementary computer and Internet material, the course will also include texts from prose fiction, poetry, journalistic prose, songs, films, recipe books, and the language of publicity. Conference work is largely based on reading and writing, and the use of the language is encouraged through games and creative composition. In addition to class and group conference, the course also has a conversation component in regular workshops with the language assistants. Supplementary activities such as opera and relevant exhibits in New York City are made available, as possible. By the end of this yearlong course, students will attain a basic competence in all aspects of the language. There will be two yearlong sections of Beginning Italian. The first section will be taught by Ms. Serafini-Sauli for the year. The second section will be taught by Ms. Benzoni in the fall and Ms. Rorandelli in the spring.