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English? Sure, but How? Lingua Summit 2005 Trenčín, September 22-23.

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Presentation on theme: "English? Sure, but How? Lingua Summit 2005 Trenčín, September 22-23."— Presentation transcript:

1 English? Sure, but How? Lingua Summit 2005 Trenčín, September 22-23

2 Pavel Kurfürst Institute of Foreign Languages Faculty of Medicine Palacký University in Olomouc

3 Institute of Foreign Languages established 1996 languages for specific purposes (LSP) (medicine, health care management)  Latin / Latin for foreigners  English  German  Czech for foreigners 5 members 780 students/semester (2004/05)

4 Institute of Foreign Languages

5 ELF of science Most of the scientific, technological and academic information in the world is expressed in English and over 80% of all the information stored in electronic retrieval systems is in English. The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of the English Language, 1997

6 ELF of science of some 100,000 scientific journals published worldwide, 50% are in English "hard core" of world scientific publishing, composed of about 4,000 to 5,000 journals, for the most part entirely in English the US have the greatest concentration of databases, the most influential ones (eg SCI), over 90% of the information in these US databases extracted from articles in English taken mostly from English-language journals in European databases the position given to other languages is hardly any greater and references in English predominate Truchot C., Key Aspects of the Use of English in Europe, Council of Europe, Strasbourg 2002

7 ELF of science most journals of repute published in other languages resorted to English to secure an international audience the dominant / the sole language for discussions in symposia, congresses etc. work in scientific laboratories where there are foreign researchers in academic circles, networks, programmes and institutions (eg EU's scientific programmes) Truchot C., Key Aspects of the Use of English in Europe, Council of Europe, Strasbourg 2002

8 ELF of science disciplines in which German scholars claim English as their working language  physics 98%  medical science 72%  history 20%  law 8% The spread of English in the Arab world in the field of higher education - the schools of science, engineering, medicine and business teach through the medium of English or a hybrid variety which uses a blend of English and Arabic Zughoul M. R., Journal of Language and Learning, 2003

9 ELF of science doctoral theses in English:  Uppsala University, Sweden, 1993-1994: nearly 100% of theses in exact sciences, engineering and medicine  Switzerland, 1996: especially German-speaking universities Zurich 61% (natural sciences)  Germany: English alone widely used often combined with German Truchot C., Key Aspects of the Use of English in Europe, Council of Europe, Strasbourg 2002

10 Loans from English From having been one of the most hospitable languages of the world in accepting foreign loans, English has become a most generous donor of words to other languages not only of Europe but also of other continents. Filipovic R., English as a word donor to other languages of Europe, In: The English Language in Europe, 1996

11 Loans from English Over the last 50 years, English has become the best known source of borrowing and loanwords for other languages in the world. English has been shown as the most important loaning language Third World countries: English is the language of "higher communication" in the fields of science and technology Industrialized countries: English is reserved for special and specialized patterns of communication in science and technology English is now the "the international currency of science and technology" Zughoul M. R., Journal of Language and Learning, 2003

12 Motivation to learn English language training as a part of compulsory curricula useful for other subjects (reading literature when preparing for seminars / exams in other subjects) ? study travels abroad (exchange programmes etc.) ? working abroad after graduation ? private use of English (books, films, holiday travels) ?  English for Specific Purposes ?

13 Study travels abroad EU programme Erasmus-Socrates 3-10 months (Britain, Sweden, Finland, Portugal, Germany, Spain, Greece, Estonia, Turkey) 2005: 32 students (ie 2 % out of circa 1,600 students) IFMSA summer holidays (16 countries all over the world) 2004: 28 students

14 Czech doctors abroad mostly Britain, Norway, Germany, Austria 200-300 doctors leave CR to work abroad each month Britain  experts can earn 3-10 M CZK / year  5,000 vacant jobs  weekend shifts: 500-2,000 £ / weekend MF Dnes, June 2005

15 Needs analysis survey project Section for Medical Education – Medical Students Association, Palacký University 2003/2004 project Medical Students’ Language Needs Analysis Daniela Jelenová (year 6) and Katherine Růžičková (year 3) supervisor Pavel Kurfürst questionnaires outcomes presented at the students’ conference (May/June 2004)


17 Needs analysis survey project questions on  students’ language competence  use of English during lectures, seminars  recommended literature in English  use of English for extracurricular activities (research, exchange programs, travels etc.)  usefulness of English for medical studies and profession  use of other languages

18 Needs analysis survey project 176 questionnaires processed (year 3: 112, year 6: 64) English necessary for medical studies (76%) and profession (84%) English literature recommended for preparation for seminars (69%) and for exams (64%): physiology, biochemistry, pharmacology, pathology, pediatrics, internal medicine – (nearly) all subjects

19 Evaluation since 1999/2000, ie 11 semesters own questionnaires 2 parts (basic + additional questions) teachers’ qualities, programme, literature, evaluation, web page etc. results incl. teachers’ comments published on the internet the future?




23 question 3 teachers’ pedagogical qualities question 8 the questionnaire - its usefulness and suitability of the questions (June 2005)

24 Lessons learned about evaluation seen as a regular, integral part of the tuition both by students and teachers not formal, not imposed questionnaires: decent layout, tailor-made anonymous, well explained carefully processed, with comments outcomes published

25 Lessons learned about evaluation feedback on different levels  individual teachers  head of the department  faculty management valuable suggestions and comments should be taken into consideration and implemented

26 Evaluation can be time consuming, complex and frustrating. Hutchinson, T. – Waters, A.: English for Specific Purposes, 1987 Evaluation can be very threatening; it suggests change and change is often resisted. The threat is greatest when evaluation is seen as as imposed external act, over which there is no control. In fact evaluation is a very constructive and powerful activity and a very stimulating one. Dudley-Evans, T. – St John, M. J.: Developments in English for Specific Purposes, 1998


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