The Survey results are in!

The Dante Alighieri Society of Canberra recently conducted a survey to obtain feedback from members about Dante’s current services and how they might be improved.

A third of the total Dante membership completed the Survey. As the majority of people who completed the survey joined the Society to study Italian, an emphasis will be placed on improving and streamlining grammar and conversation classes. In the new year, the Committee will further analyse the results of the Survey and progressively provide enhancements to Dante’s services.


We would sincerely like to thank all members who took the Survey and provided their thoughts on how we can service you better.


Some of the more significant observations based on the completed survey responses are:

  • The majority of people who answered joined DAS to study Italian (61%).
  • People mainly study Italian to learn to speak it (77%) or to travel to Italy (58%).
  • People choose Dante classes mainly because of their reputation (72%).
  • People liked learning Italian most about being a member (36%), being part of a group or the Italian community (24%) and as a shared interest in Italian society/culture/heritage (20%).
  • The number of people who study grammar decreases over time/level with most people only doing 1 year.
  • 93% of people attending grammar classes would be interested in an intensive course.
  • 88% of respondents consider grammar and learning to speak to be of equal importance.
  • People want more Social events (discussions over coffee/dinner, cooking, book/music clubs) and opportunities for Conversational Italian.
  • Small numbers of respondents offered suggestions on potential improvements to grammar classes and conversation groups. For grammar classes, the suggestions included:
    • Devoting more time to conversation, speaking and repetition;
    • Provide more details of course structure and lesson plan in advance; and
    • Offer daytime classes
  • Some reasons why people don’t enjoy conversation classes
    • Lack of structure, who is doing what, which group do I join, what is being covered each week?
    • Not linked to grammar classes or current topics being covered
    • In most cases people don’t attend because of the location, the night or they already do grammar classes and don’t want to come on a separate night
  • Some aspects people would like to change about the conversation classes
  • 47% of respondents want standard, shared material that supports learning (not to be decided by the group leader). Conversation topics to enhance vocabulary.
  • 35% of people don’t want any changes
  • 12% want the same teacher as grammar classes, 12% want a different day/time

The committee would like to thank Rosalie and Concetta for assisting with the development of the survey

Rosalie Butler (with the assistance of Franco Papandrea)