Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


A.Y. Credits
2022/2023 6
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Elizabeth Anne Ferguson by appointment (elizabeth.ferguson@uniurb.it)
Teaching in foreign languages
Course partially taught in a foreign language English
This course is taught partially in Italian and partially in a foreign language. Study materials can be provided in the foreign language and the final exam can be taken in the foreign language.

Assigned to the Degree Course

Advertising and Organizations Communication (LM-59)
Date Time Classroom / Location
Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

In today's global economy, businesses are called upon to prepare not just business letters but also a wide range of promotional materials in foreign languages.In this workshop, students will examine the language of advertising and the rules for preparing various types of texts (including instructions, press releases, mission and vision statements, direct mail, signs, etc) and will learn the specific terminology used in marketing.The project work assigned will give students the chance to try their hand at applying their knowledge to the preparation of a portfolio of effective promotional materials.


Students will review the use of English for business and advertising,  examining rhetorical strategies used by copywriters and the norms for various text types.   Authentic texts will be examined, including a range of typical media resources and other materials ranging from signs to print ads to brochures, direct mail packages, etc.  Finally, students will participate in guided practice exercises and  prepare a portfolio of advertising and promotional materials, including press releases, mission statements, brochures/leaflets, instructions, catalog copy and more.

The course will examine the following topics: 

  • language strategies used in advertising, starting from simpler strategies such as rhyme, alliteration and assonance and moving on to more sophisticated strategies such as puns/polysemy, sentence structure, use of pronouns,  buzz words, registers and everyday language, metaphor similes, metonymy, synecdoche, parallelism, homophones and homonyms, parody, etc. 
  •  the creation of slogans in English, starting from a mind map;  advertising vs. political campaign slogans
  • the language of signs (traditional and creative)and the creation of signs
  • slogans for protest signs and the creation of  sandwich boards
  • the creation of effective  mission statements vs. vision statements
  • informative vs. persuasive language
  • art briefs
  • how to create an effective leaflet or brochure
  • creating and writing effective instructions
  • describing  the history of a brand or company
  • the structure and language of press releases; the press kit
  • the creation of a direct mail package, including letter, envelope and inserts
  • the language of catalogs
  • marketing terminology

Bridging Courses

Students will need to have AT LEAST B1+/B2-  level English skills (European Framework) to cope with classroom activities.  

A language review document will be available on the Blended Learning page for the course, to give students a quick overview of basic English.

Students will need to take a language evaluation pre-test before the beginning of the course (or for exchange students from abroad, immediately at the beginning of the semester), and those with insufficient language skills will be required to do remedial work using the online platform of the following text:

--Diane Hall & Mark Foley, My Grammar Lab B1/B2  Intermediate (con espansione online) WITH KEY, Pearson Longman (2012)

All students should at the very least quickly review basic English grammar and syntax using the handout materials available online on the Blended Learning page for the course.

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

Students will:-- learn to apply grammar and syntax rules alongside norms for different text types to successfully prepare promotional and advertising materials-- students will learn the specific terminology of marketing-- students will improve their overall English language skills  

Students will learn:

1. New knowledge and understanding: the specific vocabulary of marketing and communication for businesses and institutions in the English language

1.1 These skills will be acquired through classroom attendance and using materials provided during workshop activities and guided individual practice

2. The ability to apply acquired knowledge :  Students will apply  new knowledge of text types, stylistic conventions, vocabulary and language skills

2.1  The students will acquire this ability during workshop activities in class and through guided homework activities, culminating  in the preparation of an individual portfolio of  project work

3.  Ability to make evaluations :   Students will improve their ability to analyse and evaluate the appropriateness of language strategies used in English for business and advertising

3.1  Using authentic texts, students will examine, analyse and learn to recognise appropriate language strategies and to identify errors in format or style

4.  Communication skills:   students will improve their English language skills

4.1 Students' language skills will be improved through classroom participation and speaking and writing practice as well as through a review ofd grammar and stylistic norms, which will contribute to improving confidence and fluency

5. Learning skills:  students will learn to examine materials in English from an intercultural standpoint as they examine different ways of expressing ideas and reasoning 

5.1 Through the use of authentic texts that present real cases of the use of English in business communication by multinational, British and American corporations, a window will be opened on the different ways of  communicating across cultures in presenting themselves and their products to potential users and buyers of products and services.  In that sense, the workshop will provide intercultural and not only linguistic tools.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

Students will be able to find course materials (including files, PowerPoint presentations, useful links, etc) on the Blended Learning page of the university website.  There they will also find a 'Forum' for questions and on which they will be able to receive student feedback.

Students may also speak personally with their professor at the university language centre ('CLA') during weekly 'office hours', should they need feedback on their work or have questions about the coursework.  Given the Covid-19 epidemic, these appointments may be held online using the Google Meet platform.

Teaching, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment


Classroom lessons and workshop activities.

Innovative teaching methods

Classsroom teaching will be enriched by workshop activities and in-depth learning using the University's Moodle paltform.  The entire course will be structured using the CLIL methodology (Content and Language integrated learning) and many topics will be addressed using the strategy of “Learning by doing ”.


Attendance of the classes foreseen for the course is compulsory (at least ¾ of the total lesson time) as is the  preparation of a portfolio of student projects in English.

Course books

Handout materials to be printed out  (or downloaded) and brought to class will be made available online on the Blended Learning site.

For those students who still need to reach European Framework level B1+/B2 language skills, the following text and online platform will be required for remedial work:

--Diane Hall & Mark Foley, My Grammar Lab B1/B2  Intermediate (con espansione online), Pearson Longman (2012)


The exam is an 'idoneità': a PASS or FAIL mark is given.  The exam will be held through an individual interview based on the study materials provided  and discussion of a portfolio of  individual project work on a topic agreed with the teacher.  The aim is to evaluate both students' comprehension of the content and their ability in reworking concepts and in argumenting. 

A passing mark will be given  in presence of: knowing how to link among them the main subjects addressed during the course; the use of an appropriate language; good mnemonic knowledge of the contents; a relatively good critical perspective and connection skills related to the treated topics; the use of appropriate language; the achievement of a minimal knowledge on the treated themes, even in presence of some gaps.

A failing grade will be given in the presence of: a difficult orientation related to the the treated topics; knowledge gaps; the use of inappropriate language for the text types studied; insufficient language skills.

Students who were found to need further language review at the entry test will need to pass a written English language test with multiple choice and/or short answer questions.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students


Attendance is obligatory for a minimum of 3/4s of the lessons. It is not possible to take the exam as a non-attending student


Attendance is obligatory for a minimum of 3/4s of the lessons. It is not possible to take the exam as a non-attending student


AS THIS COURSE HAS A WORKSHOP FORMAT, ATTENDING STUDENTS WILL BE EXPECTED TO PRODUCE A PORTFOLIO OF INDIVIDUAL PROJECTS WHICH MUST BE THEIR OWN ORIGINAL WORK.  While this work needs to be prepared carefully and thoughtfully, the course is a workshop and the main goal is to push students to experiment and gain confidence in preparing real-world promotional materials in English, not to produce perfect work.

« back Last update: 06/09/2022


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