Did you know that a large part of the California identity is derived from Italian immigrants from the early 1900s during the Italian American diaspora?
Italian immigrants helped make Los Angeles one of the most productive producers of wine in California. Companies like the Italian Vineyard Company of Rancho Cucamonga became the world's largest wine producer by 1917.
Knowing of Los Angeles's connection to Italy might be the reason why some Angelinos are hoping to connect back to their heritage and learn Italian.
Learning to read, write, and speak any foreign language can be of great value in both your personal and professional life, and with so many options for Italian language tutors in the Los Angeles area, you'll be able to learn Italian in no time!
Why Learn Italian?
Although love for Italy and its magnificent culture and history is enough of a reason to learn to speak the language, there are plenty of other pros that come with learning to speak and read Italian.
Here are a couple of benefits that come with learning this Romance language.
- Italian is easy! Italian is recognized as one of the easiest languages to learn for native English speakers and it gets even easier if you speak other languages like French or Spanish. It usually takes less time for an American to learn Italian than it does for them to learn Japanese.
- Easier to travel to Italy. Knowing Italian or to learn understanding basic verbs and vocabulary can help make travel around Italy a lot easier. Although most popular tourist destinations have plenty of English speakers around, if you are hoping to go off the beaten path for some more unique experiences, it might pay off to be able to talk to locals in their native language. You could take a cooking lesson in Florence or attend a play in Venice.
- Opening doors for work opportunities. Learning any foreign language gives your resume a huge boost. Employees that know two or more languages are more likely to be hired than people who only speak English. Italy is also one of the fastest-growing economies in the EU, making it a top destination for American companies hoping to break into the European market.
- Introduction to more art, cinema, and entertainment. Speaking an additional language gives you access to a whole new world of entertainment. Through your learning journey, you can pick up on Italian music, literature, and even movies.
Once you learn Italian, you’ll have access to a whole new world of Romance languages. Understanding the grammar structure and form of the Italian language can help you feel more comfortable with speaking other tongues like French, Spanish, Portuguese, and even Romanian.
In-Person Italian Lessons In Los Angeles
Once you have decided to take on Italian classes, you might be curious as to where you can find teachers. Los Angeles offers a huge variety of options for those students looking to study Italian through in-person learning, be it group classes or private instruction.
Group lessons can be found at local language schools, universities, and Italian cultural centers in the LA area.
The Los Angeles City College, UCLA, USC, and the Los Angeles Valley College all offer Italian language courses for their students.
At these universities, you are typically expected to take a placement exam to ensure that you are placed in a class that fits your comprehension level. Typically if you have no background knowledge on the subject, you are enrolled in an introductory course.
At each, college students have the option to add their Italian courses as part of their degree as an additional major or a minor. By taking on Italian as a major or minor, your school’s programs might require you to take a certain number of classes as well as pass some Italian culture and history courses.
UCLA and USC have study abroad programs with partner schools in Italy for full immersion learning.
If you don't have enough space in your schedule to enroll in a full semester's class, you might be able to opt into an Italian conversation club or even a language exchange program. This way you can learn a more casual form of speaking.
Italian courses can be found at universities across the US. Colleges typically also offer a range of foreign languages to choose from like Spanish or French.
The Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles aka Instituto Italiano di Cultura offers a wide range of services that help connect Angelenos to Italian culture.
Instituto's main goal is to promote Italian academic exchanges, cultural exhibitions, food, and books to Angelenos through activities and lessons. The center has put on free events over the years and helped promote interest in the Italian language and culture.
The Instituto offers in-person group lessons. Each of their courses run for 20 hours and meet weekly. At the end of their program, you can take the Certification of Italian as a Foreign Language (CILS) which is the official exam for Italian comprehension. This exam is required by most Italian employees and universities.
The Instituto Italiano di Cultura has a similar office in New York, if you live in New York and are interested in such a course, check out our blog on Italian Lessons in NYC.
Online Italian Courses
Now and days you can find a virtual lesson for just about everything. People can learn to cook, photograph, and even dance in the comfort of their homes through an online class. Even teaching languages can be done online so it's not surprising that you can take an Italian class through Zoom.
Booking a tutor online can help bring down the price of lessons and give you the flexibility to learn straight from your couch. By taking a private online course you will be to take advantage of personalized attention, all while cutting down transportations costs. By choosing online tutoring you are also not limited to the teachers available in your area. Since you don't have to meet in person, you can choose to work with a tutor on the other side of the world or even a native Italian.
On Superprof you can search for a tutor in your area as well as a worldwide database for a tutor outside of Los Angeles County. You can check reviews, years of experience, services, and qualifications on each of the instructors’ pages. If you have any questions, you can also contact the tutor right on the site.
Most of Superprof’s tutors also offer a free trial class so that you can test out the learning environment before purchasing a bundle of classes.
Learning Italian Through Immersion
Experts always say that the best way to learn a language is through immersion. Living day to day life with a new language can be challenging but it is also the fastest route to fluency. Constant reviews can really help you build your vocabulary and train your ear for pronunciation.
Immersion breaks the barriers of your language book and can teach you how to truly manage life in a new language. You will be learning while experiencing authentic Italian food and activities.
If you are lucky enough to travel to Italy and experience the magic of Italian culture, you will also have a great opportunity to practice your new language skills with the people you meet. You can take cooking lessons in Italian, you can ask for help in Italian, and participate in other cultural experiences that will hopefully grow your vocabulary and confidence in the new language.
If immersion is an option for you, here is the best school to learn Italian while living in Italy.
Scuola Leonardo da Vinci
With locations in Florence, Rome, Milan, and Sienna the Scuola Leonardo da Vinci offers a multitude of opportunities for students to learn Italian all while living in some of the most picturesque cities in Europe.
The Scuola offers international students programs for every level, from beginner to advanced at a variety of time periods. They offer everything from an intensive one week course to a 3-month long summer program.
Here are a couple of other classes offered that the Scuola Leonardo da Vinci:
- Professional / Business-oriented courses
- Art Fashion and E-Design
- Music courses
Through intensive teaching methodologies, the students of the immersion courses quickly learn basic verbs, vocabulary, and grammar structures. Each lesson is jam-packed with real-life scenarios and the best examples.
You can also find other immersion courses in Italy through other language schools such as Piccola Università Italiana and Sardina Italian Studies.