Degree course: 
Corso di Long single cycle degree (5 years) in GIURISPRUDENZA
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Supplementary compulsory subjects
Seat of the course: 
Como - Sant'Abbondio
First Semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (50 hours)

Core prerequisite is the knowledge of the English language equal or superior to the B1 level defined by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. During the course, it will be paid particular attention to any specific need of grammatical and/or terminological review and students will have the possibility to receive online indications for autonomous exercises and integrative readings. It is suggested to attend a basic course of Legal English.

The exam is in written form. In accordance with the current Guide Lines of the University and successive updates thereof, the exam is based on a quiz on the legal matters studied during the course, including for example matching and gap-filling exercises, true or false exercises, multiple choice questions, as well as the translation of specific expressions of Legalese and plain English. During the exam, students are allowed to use paper monolingual and bilingual dictionaries, as well as online vocabularies and linguistic databases.
Duration of the exam: 120 minutes

Voto Finale

The course is aimed at developing specific skills in reading, analyzing and translating texts and legal documents from English language in Italian language.
The course is dedicated to the study of stylistic, lexical and grammatical techniques of legal drafting and translation, with specific attention to formal and informal written communications and to the differences between Legalese and Plain English legal documents. During the course, the students will have the possibility to read, translate and examine several types of legal texts and to study the main criteria used in legal drafting and translation, the most frequent canons of interpretation, the mistakes and the ambiguities of legal documents and the canons of statutory and contractual construction. Students will also focused on style considerations and purposes of legal documents, as well as on the most useful formats adopted in drafting and translating binding documents.
Furthermore, the course includes constant studies and comparisons at linguistic and juridical level between Common and Civil Law, researches concerning particular case law, the development of a terminological database and of specific vocabularies to support translations of legal documents from English language to Italian and several connections with online instruments of legal research.

The first part of the course will be dedicated to a review of the most relevant grammatical structures of English language and of the most frequent lexical categories, with specific attention to the use of modals, infinitives and prepositional verbs, to synonyms and to the presence in legal documents of numerous false friends. The practical exercises will include numerous comparisons between plain English and Legalese, between British English and American English and between advanced vocabulary and legal English vocabulary. During the second part of the course, these lessons will be integrated with the analysis of the different rules of legal drafting and translation, of the techniques of transformation of expressions and words from Legalese to Plain English, of style criteria and of interpretation and translation canons. The course will also focus on the typical formats used for legal documents and on the techniques adopted for translation and review of binding documents.

Students can meet online the Professor at the end of her lessons by prior appointment requested by e-mail:

During the course, students will have the possibility to read summaries and glossaries concerning the issues analyzed on the e-learning platform of the University. These summaries will be converted in .pdf files and loaded in the section of the course included in the e-learning platform. Each lesson will also include online exercises, reading texts and translation of legal documents.

Peter Butt, Modern Legal Drafting, Cambridge University Press, third edition.

Additional bibliography for personal reviews and in-depth examinations:

G. Di Renzo Villata (a cura di), con la collaborazione di R. Buzzi, G. Cadel, A. Grasso, Legal English, Padova, Cedam, ed. 2017 (dall’Unità 1 all’Unità 10 inclusa).

M. Fraddosio (edited by), English for Lawyers – Law and Business, Napoli, Simone, ultima edizione.

Recommended dictionaries:

S. De Palma (edited by), in collaboration with A. Grasso and J. Schorah, Dizionario di Inglese Giuridico, Bologna, Filodiritto Editore.

G. Villa (edited by), Dizionario esplicativo di inglese giuridico, Milan, Giuffrè Editore.

F. De Franchis (edited by), Dizionario giuridico – Law dictionary, 2 – Italiano/Inglese e Inglese/Italiano, Milano, Giuffrè, latest edition.


The course will take place from October to December 2020 and include 50 hours of lesson. During the lessons, the grammatical and lexical analysis will be integrated with numerous practical exercises and readings, translations and comprehension tests.

Students can meet online the Professor at the end of her lessons by prior appointment requested by e-mail: