Dante Alighieri Society of Washington

per la diffusione della lingua e della cultura italiana nel mondo

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Dante Classroom

Join One of Our Language Classes!

About our classes

Our Dante Language School has been honored for the quality of its Italian language program with a financial grant of support. The prestigious Italian Cultural Institute and the Consulate General of Italy in San Francisco again awarded the 2017-18 curriculum, recognizing the Dante Alighieri Society of Washington for promoting Italian culture and language.

Our instructors are highly qualified native speakers. Learn more about our instructors below.

The Dante Alighieri Society of Washington is one of the few institutes in North America authorized to offer PLIDA (Progetto Lingua Italiana Dante Alighieri - Dante Alighieri Italian Language Project) certification. The PLIDA certificates attest proficiency in Italian as a foreign language on a 6-level scale according to the parameters established by the Common European Framework for Languages. Learn more about the PLIDA Certification Program here.

All classes are held on the Seattle University campus in the Administration Building. However, the Dante Alighieri Society - Italian Language Program is a self-sustaining autonomous program independent of Seattle University.

The class schedule follows an academic schedule on the same format as a college or university level class. While the subject matter of each of the three quarters of the academic year builds on the previous quarter, it is possible to enter the program at any quarter depending on one's previous experience and knowledge of the language. Please seek the advice of the Program Director if you have any questions on your appropriate entry level and timing. Learn more details about the schedule and classes offerings below. Choose your class and register below.

Pricing for our classes varies by level and is based on typical enrollment levels. As a non-profit our classes offer you an excellent value compared to other options in the Puget Sound area. Learn more about our pricing approach below.

Class Schedules

Classes are held Tuesday & Thursday evenings, 7:00pm - 8:30pm, with the exception of the Conversation Italian Class which will be held on Monday & Wednesday evenings. Occasionally different schedules are offered to accommodate staffing and enrollment needs. Be sure to check the Offerings list below for current offerings.

2018 - 2019 School Year

Quarter Dates Registration Deadline* Notes
Fall 2018 October 2 - Dec 11 September 25 Thanksgiving - No classes 11/22
Winter 2019 January 8 - March 14 December 21
Spring 2019 April 2 - June 6 March 22

*If you have missed the deadline send an e-mail to the Program Director to be added in a class. Registering by the deadline helps ensure that the class will meet enrollment requirements and be held.

Location of our Classes

SU Admin

All classes are held on the Seattle University campus in the Administration Building. However, the Dante Alighieri Society - Italian Language Program is a self-sustaining autonomous program independent of Seattle University. The Administration Building is located on campus at the intersection of Broadway and E Madison on Capitol Hill.

Find your personal directions at: google maps

Class offerings

Level PLIDA Description Fee Instructor Text
Beginning A1 Level A1 is for people with no or little knowledge of Italian. Students will be introduced to the basic phonetic, grammatical and lexical structures through conversation and simple dialogues. During the three-quarter course, students will be engaged in a variety of fun activities and begin their journey of learning Italian. $180 Laura Ciroi, Room ADM202, Fall '18 Oggi in Italia. 8th edition. Merlonghi, Merlonghi, Tursi, O’Connor ISBN 978-0618678129 ISBN-10:0618678123 © 2007
Elementary A2 Continuation of the beginning class or for people who have already studied some Italian. Students will finish exploring the essential grammar structures while learning appropriate and relevant words and expressions. At the end students should be able to use the basic structures of the language with confidence and will be able to communicate well in daily situations. $180 Marina Gagliardi, Room ADM204, Fall '18 Oggi in Italia. 8th edition. Merlonghi, Merlonghi, Tursi, O’Connor ISBN 978-0618678129 ISBN-10:0618678123 © 2007
Intermediate B1 Students will be reviewing and reinforcing their knowledge of the language in addition to expanding their vocabulary and ability to understand written and spoken Italian. Students will be exposed to cultural and literary readings and will develop a greater understanding of Italian culture, lifestyle and way of thinking. $275 Nicla Riverso, Room ADM206, Fall '18 Da Capo. 6th edition Annamaria Moneti, Graziana Lazzarino ISBN-10: 1413016405 ISBN-13: 9781413016406 © 2007
Intermediate B2 Completes the review and reinforcement of the grammar covered in the beginning and elementary levels in addition to covering any other missing structures. The course will help students to understand articles from newspaper and the web, song lyrics, literary excerpts, videos, and excerpts from films and commercials. At the end, students will be able to engage effectively in a conversation, express opinions and give simple explanations. $275 Tommaso Nencetti, Room ADM207, Fall '18 Da Capo. 6th edition Annamaria Moneti, Graziana Lazzarino ISBN-10: 1413016405 ISBN-13: 9781413016406 © 2007
Advanced Conversation B1 and above A multi-level conversational course open to students who have completed level B1 and recommended for those with a level proficiency above B2. Course will advance your fluency, listening and conversational skills, expand vocabulary and improve your grammar. $375 Staff,
Room TBD,
Fall '18
Class material will be communicated after the first meeting

Class Registration

Payment can be made either by online payment using PayPal or by mail with checks only made payable to D.A.S. Italian Language Program. Click the appropriate registration button below.

REFUNDS: Tuition fee is 100% refundable within the first two weeks of the quarter.

Level PLIDA Fee PayPal Mail
Beginning A1 $180
Mail Form
Elementary A2 $180
Mail Form
Intermediate B1 $275
Mail Form
Upper Intermediate B2 $275
Mail Form
Advanced Conversation B1 and above $375
Mail Form

Staff bios

Program Director - Giuseppe Tassone

Guiseppe Photo

Giuseppe Tassone moved to Seattle from Italy in 1993. He has been the director of the Italian Language Program of the Dante Alighieri Society of Washington since 1998 and the PLIDA coordinator since 2011. He is a language educator, coordinator, and advocate of Italian language and culture. He has a background in economics and finance (B.A. in Economics), but chooses to specialize in Italian language and culture (M.A. in Italian Studies). He has 20+ years of experience teaching, developing curricula, coordinating, testing, and assessing in public and non-profit organizations (e.g. Seattle University, University of Washington, Shoreline College). Several years ago, Giuseppe decided to combine his passion for economics and the Italian language to research and write his own Italian for Business textbook. In 2016, Hackett Publishing Company published the finished product of his labor, a book entitled, Un buon affare, Italian for Business. This has been his biggest publication to date. It was preceded by two books, Ricordati di me and Buongiorno Notte - Italian Films Series by Edizioni Farinelli, as well as reviews and/or contributions to several Italian language textbooks, such as Da Capo, Oggi in Italia, Avanti, Piazza and most recently Sentieri (3rd edition), an innovative leading textbook. Giuseppe’s personal interests are: reading, traveling, cinema, economics, politics, playing and listening to music, swimming, biking, gardening and cooking.

E-mail: tassone@danteseattle.org

Laura Ciroi


Laura Ciroi has been teaching with the Italian language program of the Dante Alighieri Society of Washington since 2003. She was born in Palmanova, in Northern Italy, a star shaped fortress built by the Serenissima Republic of Venice to protect the territory from the invasions of the Hapsburg and the Ottoman Empires. She was raised speaking Italian, French and Friulano (her native Northern Italian dialect). Laura received a Laurea in Linguistics from the Università di Udine where she specialized in Spanish and English literature. Since then she has lived and worked in Holland, Switzerland, Spain, England, America, and Italy.

E-mail: lauracbolan@danteseattle.org

Marina Gagliardi

Marina Gagliardi

Marina Gagliardi was born and raised in Bari, the largest and more important city of Puglia. Her interest in the study of foreign languages started at a very young age and led her to pursue a Laurea in Translation Studies from the renowned SSLMIT - School of Modern Languages for Interpreters and Translators - at the University of Trieste, specializing in English/French-Italian technical and scientific translation. After spending a few years in Italy working in the travel industry, she moved to the United States with the opportunity to teach Italian language at the University of Washington as a Teaching Assistant while earning her MA in Italian Studies. Marina currently lives in Bothell, and has been teaching with the Dante Alighieri Society of Washington since November 2013. She is fluent in French, loves teaching, traveling, reading, and cooking her favorite foods from her hometown's culinary tradition.

E-mail: marina@danteseattle.org

Tommaso Nencetti


Tommaso Nencetti was born and raised in Florence, Italy. In the cradle of the Renaissance, he developed a passion for languages and pursued his interests for Italian, English, Spanish and French at the Volta Language School in Florence, where he excelled all the way through his graduation in 2007. He expanded his knowledge and teaching skills with further courses in Florence and a two-year experience in the UK. Keen on languages, geography, history, music, fashion and sports, he continues his now 10-year teaching career in Seattle, WA where he relocated in 2015, sharing the passion and appreciation for culture, background and heritage of each language.

E-mail: tommaso@danteseattle.org

Nicla Riverso

Nicla Riverso

Nicla Riverso is a native of Napoli, Italy. She has a Laurea in Materie Letterarie (degree in humanities) and a Laurea in Pedagogy (degree in education) from the Università degli Studi di Cassino. She earnead her M.A. in Italian Studies and her PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Washington. She taught Italian litearature and history in secondary schools in Italy for eight years and has taught as a teaching assistant and lecturer for French and Italian Studies and Comparative Literature departments at the University of Washington for ten years. She has published on Sarpi, Dante, Ariosto, humanism and literacy.

E-mail: nicla@danteseattle.org

Patrick Zambianchi


Patrick Zambianchi was born in Switzerland, where he grew up speaking the three national languages: French, Italian and German. After earning his M.A. in English literature from the University of Lausanne in 2005, Patrick moved to Seattle where he recently completed his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at the University of Washington. He has taught a variety of classes in comparative literature, French and Italian at UW as well as other colleges in the Seattle area. His mission as an instructor is to bring language to life in the classroom so as to provide an honest look into the cultures that speak it. In his free time, Patrick enjoys hiking with his dog Luke in the great Pacific Northwest, reading, gardening and traveling.

E-mail: pzambianchi@danteseattle.org

Pricing structure

As a non-profit, Dante is able to provide excellent values to its students. On a per-hour of instruction, instructor qualifications, and student to teacher ratios, Dante prices are hard to beat anywhere in the Puget Sound areas for in-person instruction, which Dante considers crucial to competency in the language.

The pricing variation for different levels is based on both historical enrollment levels and the nature of the courses that benefit from smaller group participation and more one-on-one engagement. The intent is to maximize the benefits and value for each level.

Due to the lack of profit margin, classes can only be held in the event that minimum enrollment levels are met. Thus we encourage students to enroll by the posted deadlines to ensure that sessions can be scheduled. In the event that the session you registered for cannot be held, the Program Director will work with you to find the most appropriate alternative or refund your payment if a suitable fit is not available.