Peoples' Friendship University of Russia (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN17 Proceedings
Publication year: 2017
Pages: 9843-9847
ISBN: 978-84-697-3777-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2017.0862
Conference name: 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 3-5 July, 2017
Location: Barcelona, Spain
To develop key competency in students is one of main objectives at High School nowadays. Competency-based approach to teaching is therefore an innovative process and fits well to overall concept of educational standards applied in many countries.

The article is devoted to analysis of problem-based teaching method that can prove itself as one of the methods to implement above-mentioned competency-based approach in foreign language classes. We consider important to point out the following advantages of such teaching method:
a) student’s autonomous performance in the process of learning;
b) aiming at knowledge mobility development;
c) flexibility of the method with reliance on student’s critical thinking skills;
d) structural variability;
e) differentiation of learning materials’ content;
f) variety of used teaching methods and forms;
g) possibility to reduce study time while preserving the depth and completeness of knowledge.

The idea of problem-based learning is not new. Researches in this sphere started in 60s of the XX century and were aimed at finding ways to stimulate students’ mental activity and develop creative thinking. However, nowadays problem case serves not just as a source for intellectual challenge offered to students, that is a necessary condition to develop their thinking abilities, but also as a means of motivation and emotional impact in the course of study.

Teaching foreign language is aimed nowadays at developing various skills to communicate with a speaker of another language as with a representative of a different culture, in other words, developing cross-cultural competency. Cross-cultural communication, especially in business, may imply various problems and challenges so in foreign language classes it is necessary to reveal them and teach students how to deal with them most efficiently. Therefore, most teachers of foreign language try to incorporate problem-based approach in their classes.

The choice of teaching material for connected with solving a problem tasks should be made with reference to applied problem-solving methods, intellectual level of students, and level of their critical and creative thinking. Problematisation can be based both on socio-linguistic materials and on professionally oriented assignments, in the form of case studies or specialized texts discussions in accordance with other teaching tasks.

The article describes an experience of using problem-based technique in foreign language classes for students of Economic Faculty taking a course of “Foreign language for professional communication” as a way to develop skills helping to solve a variety of professionally oriented communicative tasks.
Competency-based approach, problem-based learning, teaching method, creative thinking, critical thinking.