In our average first-year intake of 35-40 students, about half of these will have no A-level or equivalent qualification in the language.
The first-year course allocates extra hours and separate language groups to allow beginners to cope with the demands of studying a new language at degree level, though at the end of the first academic year all students are required to take the same four papers in the Preliminary examination.
Here you can find a sample of the "Firenze" Italian Diploma exam.
Download the exam's pdf document and the audio document for the same level.
Teachers registered with Cambridge International can download past papers and early release materials (where applicable) from our password protected School Support Hub, where a much wider selection of syllabus materials is also available to download.
Look under ‘Past Examination Resources’ and filter by exam year and series.
There are also documents with the correct answers for marking and judgement criteria corresponding to each level.
We kindly ask to you to carefully read the copyright document and the Italian Language Academy AIL Syllabus before starting the test.
Because the Prelims course moves rapidly, we do expect students wanting to study Italian from scratch to have done some preparation on their own before they start the Oxford course, and we provide them with plenty of advice on how to do so.
We also run every year a pre-sessional residential course for beginners or near-beginners in Italian; attendance is highly recommended, albeit not compulsory, and participants are required to contribute to the costs.