TEACHING ENGINEERING DEGREE IN THE UNIVERSIDAD POLITECNICA MADRID
Linguistic diversity has been promoting in the European Union as one of its main educational goals. This is an element that facilitates student mobility and student exchanges between different universities and countries and enriches the education of young undergraduates. In particular, a higher degree of competence in the English language is becoming essential for engineers, architects and researchers in general, as English has become the lingua franca that opens up horizons to internationalization and the transfer of knowledge in today’s world.
The Integrated Approach to Contents and Foreign Languages System has been an option that has certain benefits over the traditional method of teaching a second language that is exclusively based on specific subjects. This system advocates teaching the different subjects in the syllabus in a language other than one’s mother tongue, without prioritizing knowledge of the language over the subject.
We began this with the idea that in the 2009/10 academic year gave rise to the Second Language Integration Programme (SLI Programme) at the Escuela Arquitectura Técnica in the Universidad Politécnica Madrid (EUATM-UPM), just at the beginning of the tuition of the new Building Engineering Degree, which had been adapted to the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) model.
During the 2012/2013 academic year the level of acceptance and the results of the SLI Programme are being monitored. Tools have been designed to aid interdisciplinary coordination and to analyze satisfaction, such as coordination records and surveys. The results currently available refer to the first and second year of the Degree and are divided into specific aspects of the different subjects involved and into general aspects of the ongoing experience.
This program is an interdisciplinary initiative for the set of subjects taught during the semester and is coordinated through the Assistant Director Office for Educational Innovation. We will summit the experience in Architectural drawing.
The SLI Program has a dual goal; to familiarize students with the specific English terminology of the subject being taught, and at the same time improve their communication skills in English. A total of thirty lecturers are taking part in the teaching of eleven first year subjects and twelve in the second year, with around 120 students who have voluntarily enrolled in a special group in each semester.