PROFESSIONALLY-ORIENTED CONTENT AND LANGUAGE INTEGRATED LEARNING (CLIL) COURSE IN HIGHER EDUCATION PERSPECTIVE
Peter the Great St.Petersburg Polytechnic University (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
About this paper:
Conference name: 10th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2017
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:Since recent years Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU) has been involved in competition for higher international ratings. Striving to be among five Russia’s universities within a hundred of best universities in the world by 2020, SPbPU participates in various activities aimed at developing international relations. Increasing students’ academic mobility has become as important as enhancing staff publication activity. Since foreign language competence lies at the heart of all internationalization activities, the goal was set to improve the quality of teaching English.
So, instead of the prevailing English for Specific Purposes (ESP) methodology at all levels it was decided to use content and language integrated learning (CLIL) and English as Medium of Instruction (EMI) methodologies for senior students. The CLIL course designed as a second year introduction into a theoretical third year Databases discipline was created through the mutual effort of the linguistic and technical departments. The latter discipline taught in English is considered to be an example of EMI practice at our university. This combination of ESP – CLIL – EMI methodologies constitute a model of English language teaching at a modern university, in which the focus of learning a foreign language is gradually shifted from purely linguistic aspects in ESP to tantamount content & language integration in CLIL and further to the dominance of professionally-oriented aspects in EMI.
Therefore, the main objectives of the reseach was the following:
1) to specify the level of integration thorough the description of the proposed model;
2) to specify the position of CLIL in foreign language teaching at university;
3) to analyze of the created course syllabus and approbation results.
The article presents the investigation of possibilities for integration of the ideas of three popular approaches (ESP, CLIL, EMI) into one model. The authors describe and analyze an interdisciplinary course in English created as the result of co-operation between the Department of Foreign Languages and Systems analysis and control described in the practical part of the paper as well as the difficulties we have faced during its implementation. This course enabled the authors to achieve a higher degree of professional focus than in conventional ESP textbooks, for example, in InfoTech. All the video lectures and textual materials of the interdisciplinary course in English were carefully selected by the lecturer of the special theoretical Databases discipline, while the language exercises were created by the instructors in the Professional Foreign Language discipline. This professionally focused integrated preparatory course aimed at advancing the database terminology is described in terms of CLIL methodology and this paper focuses on the design of the course syllabus and analysis of the two year course approbation.
The results of the reseach showed good possibilities for realization of our model integrating the ideas of three approaches: ESP, CLIL and EMI. The students demonstrated an increasing level of competences in the final test at the end of the first year course approbation indicating that ESP acquisition as well as the acquisition of the Databases fundamentals were successful, the survey highlighted some problem zones.
Keywords: Content and language integrated learning (CLIL), ESP and EMI methodologies, CLIL course, professional focus, model, university, students, Databases discipline, approbation results, survey.