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Portuguese 1


Admission requirements

Not applicable.


This is the first of four language proficiency courses in Portuguese under the Bachelor’s degree programme in Latin American Studies.
It is an starters/lower intermediate Portuguese language course, which develops written and oral communication skills through an intensive programme of language acquisition. Grammar and language structures are taught around a schedule centred on practical/concrete situations, such as speaking about oneself, getting to know people, finding one’s way round town, communicating present and past situations, etc.
It is a communicative language proficiency course in Portuguese in which all skills (reading, writing, listening, spoken production and spoken interaction), including grammar and vocabulary, are integrated. Following the levels and can-do-statements of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR), seminars are designed according to the task-based approach and the students´ proficiency is aimed at A2+ level. During seminars, all topics will be discussed through written and oral texts, video or audio fragments and role-plays. Students work individually, in pairs or small groups. The students´ active attitude towards preparation for and participation during seminars is crucial in order to be able to meet the learning outcomes of the course.

Transferable Skills:

  • Problem solving (recognizing and analyzing problems, solution-oriented thinking)

  • Analytical thinking (analytical skills, abstraction, proof)

  • Responsibility (ownership, self-discipline, responsible attitude towards own project, acknowledging errors)

  • Commitment (dedication, motivation, proactive attitude, own initiative)

  • Self-regulation (independence, insight into one's own goals, motives and capacities)

  • Oral communication (presenting, speaking skills, listening)

  • Written communication (writing skills, reporting, structuring, summarizing)

  • Working together (teamwork, support, loyalty, fulfilling agreements, attendance)

  • Flexibility (dealing with changes, eagerness to learn, adaptability)

  • Critical thinking (asking questions, checking assumptions)

  • Creative thinking (resourcefulness, curiosity, out of the box thinking)

  • Integrity (honesty, morality, ethical conduct, personal values)

  • Intercultural skills (communication with different cultures)

Course objectives

This basic user course covers four key skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. By the end of the course, students will be familiar with elementary language structures and a selection of practical vocabulary clusters.

European Framework for Languages:
Listening A2+
Reading A2+
Spoken Interaction A2+
Spoken Production A2+
Writing A2+

By the end of the course, students will have achieved the A2+ level in the mentioned skills according to the CEFR. This means that at the end of the course the students will be able to:

  • express simple opinions or requirements in a familiar context.

  • handle very short social exchanges, even though not usually understanding enough to keep the conversation going.

  • understand phrases and the highest frequency vocabulary related to areas of most immediate personal relevance (e.g. very basic personal and family information, shopping, local area, employment).

  • understand straightforward information within a known area, such as on products and signs and simple textbooks or reports on familiar matters.

  • identify important information in brief news or newspaper articles in which numbers, names and captions facilitate comprehension.

  • follow simple instructions in a not very complicated text, for example, cookery recipe.

  • write short texts (such as letters, postcards, etc.) related to personal information or matters in areas of immediate needs.


Timetable LAS

Mode of instruction

Seminars in which an active participation of the students is expected. A major part of class hours is focused on the activities that cannot be done at home such as oral activities and explanation of new topic (grammar and vocabulary). Students are expected to regularly check Blackboard for homework and other exercises. At home, students should consciously work on the skills that they need to improve depending on their individual need (listening, writing, more grammar and vocabulary exercises, etc.). It is the responsibility of the students to reach the target level by coming to class prepared and doing regular self-study not only for the exams and submission deadlines but throughout the semester.

Course load

Total Hours for the Course: 280 hours

Seminar attendance: 78 hours (6 hours per week x 13 weeks);
Exams: 6 hours;
Assignments and preparation: 78 hours (6 hours per week x 13 weeks);
Class preparation: 78 hours (6 hours per week x 13 weeks);
Exam Preparation: 40 hours.

Assessment method


The assessment method is divided into two: graded and not graded (continuous assessment).
Continuous assessment: participation in class, tasks, presentations, homework
Graded assessment: oral exam, listening comprehension exam, written exams (midterm and final) and writing tasks for the portfolio.
Continuous assessment
The progress that the student makes during the semester will be taken into account through con-tinuous assessment. This means that the lecturer will regularly check whether the student duly car-ries out the assignments and tasks as proposed in class and Blackboard.
At least 80% of the continuous assessment assignments should be submitted before deadline is a prerequisite to have access to the graded exams at the end of the course. A task is considered submitted if it is complete and instructions have been followed.
Graded assessment

  • Listening comprehension test
    The oral exam consists of two parts: question-and-answer/interview type and interaction about particular daily or specific situations with another student or the teacher/s.

  • Written exams consist of three parts:

    1. Reading Comprehension
    2. Grammar and Vocabulary
    3. Writing
      The portfolio is a physical file including reading, writing and self-assessment exercises. The grad-ed part is the compilation of written exercises. For this, student must hand in a draft of each writ-ten exercise in a timely and regular manner. For participation in the midterm and final (oral and written) exams, handing in the complete portfolio (with all the assignments self-corrected and written tasks modified/rewritten) before deadline is compulsory. Writing tasks submitted late will not be commented upon by the lecturer and the student should ask another person (classmate, friend, etc.) who can correct it so that two versions (original and modified) can be included in the final portfolio file.


70% written + 30% oral
Written Exam 1 (Mid-term) (30%) (1-2 hours);
Written Exam 2 (Final) (30%) (1-2 hours);
Portfolio [writing exercises] (10%);
Listening comprehension: (10%)
Oral Exam (Final) (20%) (7-15 minutes).

Written exams include linguistic exercises (e.g., fill-the-gap, short answer, etc.), written compre-hension, listening comprehension, and short essay.
Oral assessment consists of a question/answer session.

The final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average. To pass the course, the final weighted grade should be 6 or higher.


Resit for relevant component: written exam/oral.

The student who does not pass the course (weighted grade lower than 6) is entitled to a resit eval-uation. This evaluation will consist of two parts: ● Oral exam (30%): question/answer session. ● Written exam (70%): reading comprehension; grammar and vocabulary; writing.
To pass the course, the weighted resit grade should be 6 or higher.

Exam review

The date of exam review will be announced in Blackboard.
How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.


Blackboard will be used for:

  • providing study materials and announcements

Reading list

Emma Eberlein, Novo Avenida Brasil 1 (São Paulo: EPU). 2010 edition or later.
Isabel Coimbra and Olga M. Coimbra, Gramática Ativa 1. (Versão brasileira – Lamartine Bião Oberg) (Porto: Lidel). [very good selection of grammar exercises, with answers provided. There are two versions of it: European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese. The course uses the latter

Additional materials are supplied by Tutors.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.

General information about uSis is available in Engels and Nederlands

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.

Contact information

For questions about the content of the course, you can contact the teacher:
A.P. Cardozo de Souza MA

Administrations Office: van Wijkplaats


Students will only be allowed to take the midterm, final written and oral exams if all of these conditions are satisfied:

  • 80% compulsory attendance. Absence must be reported in advance to the lecturer giving a valid reason. Students who do not meet the 80% attendance requirement will not be allowed to take the exams. Frequent tardiness and both excused and unexcused absences are included in the 20% margin. Exceptions to this should be mutually agreed upon by both the lecturer and the student in writing (e-mail).

  • A complete portfolio is submitted on time (one submission per block) to have access to the midterm, final written and oral exams. The content and deadline of each submission will be set by the lecturer.

  • Progress throughout the course. Students are expected to participate actively in discussions during seminars and to duly carry out all assignments during and outside seminar hours. During the semester, you are expected to complete all assignments and to check all the topics and activities regardless of them being discussed or not in class. Students will be excluded from the exams if they fail to participate or prepare sufficiently (see “Continuous Assessment”).