Language Learning in Italy

There are many different options for learning the Italian language while in Italy. It is important to learn the language, even if you find that the people that you are working with are not Italian native speakers. The immigrants themselves will be learning the Italian language, and it will be impossible to learn all of the different languages of the different people that you will meet, so you will need a “trade language”, one that you both can use to communicate with one another.

Your choice for language learning will likely depend quite a lot on your personal family situation. A general rule, though, is that the more that you can immerse yourself in the language, forcing yourself to understand and communicate with that language, the quicker you will learn it.

There are intensive programs that cost several thousand dollars per person, possibly €10,000-€12,000, allowing you even to move in and only speak Italian in that location. That is a great option if you can spend the time and money as you will likely be on-site and completely dedicated to the program for 3-6 months.

Other options allow you to go to a private language-learning school, working through an intensive program for 4-6 hours per day, but still allowing you some time outside for other things. You might find that these courses could cost in the range of €1,000-€3,000 per person.

You can also easily find language tutors who might charge €20-30 per hour to teach you and speak with you in Italian.

And finally, there are also local, public school programs for foreigners that cost very little, sometimes as little as €10 per year, but offer programs that run 2-4 hours per day.

As you pursue your language learning program, you should be measured by your abilities according to the following scale:

A1, A2
B1, B2
C1, C2

A is the beginning level, B is the middle, and C is approaching fluency.

Note that there is a legal requirement, if after 5 years in Italy you apply for the Carte di Soggiorno, to present a certificate that you have passed A2, so regardless of where you go to school, you should ask about receiving your certificates that you have passed the level.

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