DISTANCE TEACHING ENGLISH FOR SPECIFIC PURPOSES

E. Malyuga1, E. Ponomarenko2

1Peoples' Friendship University of Russia (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
2Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO-University) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
Today, influenced by development of global net and scientific-and-technological advance, pedagogics, as well as any other sciences, is changing being strongly drawn towards information-and-communicative technologies as highly prospective modern teaching aids. The article is to analyze in what way the ICT development modifies the ESP teaching under the present-day conditions. The full text of presentation will be illustrated with short videos with resource materials worked out by the authors especially for the ESP distance course.

Within information society, foreign language teachers obtain new effective teaching aids. Implementation of information and communication technologies (ICT) in educational process in general and network resources in particular leads to expanding access to education, developing open education system and creating new qualification characteristics of modern specialists. Specific conditions of ESP teaching are characterized by a comparatively small number of academic hours, a minimal training period (a two-year cycle) and different levels of applicants’ initial language training. Therefore, it is reasonable to intensify training by devoting more academic hours to extracurricular classes and stimulating students’ independent work, i.e. making an emphasis on distance mode of teaching.

Distance learning is a set of network, program, information and pedagogical technologies of purposefully organized learning process, by means of students and teachers’ synchronous or non-synchronous interactive team work and work with teaching aids invariant to their location in space and agreed in time (Concept of Open Education System Establishment, CIS, 2006).
The open education system assumes getting education through a student’s purposeful, controlled, intensive independent creative work in a convenient tempo. A student is free to choose the curriculum, teachers, schedule and form of study in one or several educational institutions (regardless of their location or the student’s place of residence) and an opportunity of his/her lifelong study following his/her own educational path.

At present, many students prefer electronic resources to traditional information sources as they consider Internet search to be an easier way to master a language. Admittedly, the main objective of teaching foreign language in higher education institutions is practical use of foreign language as well as developing a personality capable of communication and aiming at self-education. Participation in various international programs and an opportunity to study abroad assume not only high level of foreign language knowledge but also an individual’s particular features: sociability, absence of language barrier, knowledge of international etiquette norms, broad outlook.

Thus we can come to conclusion that teacher’s tasks at present are to intensify the process of mastering the foreign language through the application of state-of-the-art technologies, to facilitate each student’s activity in the process of learning and provide opportunities for their independence and creativity. The use of modern teaching aids such as computer programs and Internet technologies as well as distance learning render aid in solving these tasks.