Simona Scanni

Simona Scanni

Department of Modern Languages
Doctoral researcher

Contact details

Phd title: Effectiveness of online language learning: a case study of Italian as a foreign language
SupervisorDr Paolo De Ventura and Dr Paola Cori
PhD in Modern Languages (Translation)


  • 2019 Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)
  • 2017 Post-graduate course (Italian Master I livello) in the Teaching of Language Learning: Italian Language - UniMarconi University (Distance Learning)
  • 2016 Post-graduate course (Italian Master I livello) in Educational psychology and teaching for Specific Learning Disorders - UniCusano University (Distance learning), Rome (Italy)
  • 2016 TKT – CLIL by Cambridge English Language Assessment
  • 2015 Teacher Qualification TFA – Tirocinio Formativo Attivo A345/A346 - University of Bari (Italy)
  • 2012 MA in Modern languages for international cooperation - University of Bari (Italy)
  • 2012 CEDILS - Certificate in teaching Italian to foreigners - Ca' Foscari University of Venice (Italy)
  • 2007 BA in Political Science, International Relations and European Studies -University of Bari (Italy)


"A different language is a different adventure." This is something that resounded with me after I graduated from the University of Bari, Italy with a Political Science Degree and moved to London, was awarded a scholarship for a post graduate course in tourism and undertook an internship at the Italian cultural institute.

My subsequent decision to pursue studies in Modern Languages at university was motivated by this time I spent living abroad. After returning to Italy, I enrolled in a Master’s degree at the University of Bari and, while studying both French and English, I decided to continue on my voyage of discovery, this time studying in Paris with the Erasmus programme. A few months after returning to Italy from the Parisian leg of my voyage of discovery, I obtained the CEDILS certificate which allowed me to continue on my next journey as a world citizen: becoming a qualified Italian FL/SL teacher and graduating with a Master’s Degree. Sensing a growing demand for online teaching, I embarked on a new specialism: teaching Italian, via Skype, to English speakers around the world, using English as a vehicular language. I had finally found my passion.

It was that motivation which drove me to pass my entry test to qualify as an English teacher in secondary school in Italy and to test my energy, determination and commitment to achieving my dream even more. The following year I passed an important competitive exam, the Italian “Concorso Docenti 2016” to become a stable teacher in schools. In 2019, I obtained Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) to teach in England.


In recent years, the use of technology and the Internet have spread rapidly and have made it possible for people to learn foreign languages online. This study intends to investigate the effectiveness of learning Italian online and crucial factors involved in the online learning process, such as motivation, personality, identity and autonomy.

The proposed research will contribute to the literature in two ways. First, although there have recently been some studies based on surveys and case studies into the effects of Web-based learning, very little research has been done about the effectiveness of online language learning, particularly in relation to students’ individual factors which contribute to the success of online language learning. Second, the study fills a gap in the online learning of Italian as a Foreign Language research.

Research Interests

  • Foreign and second language learning

  • FL/SL teaching
  • Italian as a FL/SL
  • Online FL teaching

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