Peoples' Friendship University of Russia (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN16 Proceedings
Publication year: 2016
Pages: 8905-8909
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.0943
Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain
In the current circumstances of professional competition the graduates of economics faculties should be able to adapt quickly to the changing environment, acquire knowledge independently, process information (search for data necessary to solve the task set, analyse, generalize, compare, make well-grounded conclusions and make decisions based on them). That is why it is necessary to introduce the elements of professionalization in the early stages of language training. Linguistic requirements such as skills for effective business and professional communication in a foreign language, the ability to hold talks and business meetings, conduct official correspondence in English, confidently communicate by various means of communication are also essential for economics graduates.

Introduction of problem based learning in academic process is at present not only a goal but objective reality. In this regard, the newest teaching materials corresponding to the above mentioned requirements are designed by ESP teachers. The aim of our research was to work out a system of practical tasks taking into consideration the most typical professional situations which may require the skill of problem solving.

In development of case studies offered to students of economics, special attention is paid to choice and practical usage of professional terminology; training the sills of pragmatic design of oral and written speech; imitation of various working processes.

As a result of analysis and synthesis of empirical material the following system of exercises was worked out in accordance with the skills to be trained: case study; talks; meeting; telephone call; compare and contrast task; discussion; presentation; video / audio material analysis; describing a graph / chart; acting out a dialogue; summarising the main ideas; writing a letter/report/memo. The set of exercises embraces the most popular communicative situations at the workplace. They include both oral and written communication as well as communication mediated by various technical means.

Among the criteria used to assess the results of the learning process are the ability to understand the essence of the professional problem, analyze and suggest possible solutions; ability to hold talks, expressing proposal, agreement (disagreement), compromise and reach a mutually acceptable solution; to deal with complaints; ability to hold a speech of informational or persuasive nature using the active speech patterns and supporting the feedback with the audience and others.

The research results enabled us to summarise and synthesize the experience of ESP teaching and develop a course intended for marketing specialists. The results received may be used in academic process at non-linguistic universities to train professional communication more effectively.
Problem based learning, ESP, case studies, methods of teaching.