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Learner Training and Learner Autonomy - Essay Example

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1English is seen as the language which gives right of entry to education and technology, which serves as a common means of communication in global trade and commerce and is used as a lingua franca by people who otherwise do not share a language. As an outcome, competence in the language is required by people who need it for instrumental reasons and are not mainly interested in language learning as an educational experience…
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Learner Training and Learner Autonomy
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Download file to see previous pages English for Academic Purposes (EAP) is a growing branch of ESP atypical to Higher Education. This can have courses be fundamentally diverse from country to country, especially while English is the medium of instruction for a scientific subject, as it is in large parts of Africa and the Indian subcontinent (Mokhtari, K., & Sheorey, R. 1994).
Basically, the goal of pragmatic EAP is to fit students into existing academic and social structures, not to encourage them to question or revise those structures. Feminist pedagogy, on the other hand, assumes a need for greater dialogue across races, classes, and genders to equalize power in society and promote social change (Maher & Tetreault, 1994).
When the students' needs consist of "the quick and economical use of the English language to pursue a course of academic study" (Coffey, 1984, p. 3), English for academic purposes (EAP) is offered. The incorporation of writing into the EAP curriculum, however, necessitates collaboration with the instructor in the other discipline, following what Shih (1986) calls the "adjunct model" of many university composition programs for native students. But the development of such programs for ESL students has been slow, and Shih recommends that we learn from existing programs:
The potential contributi...
What is needed, minimally, is cooperation from subject-area instructors and ESL faculty willingness to step into subject-area classrooms and keep up with class events. For ESL instructors seeking to set up adjunct courses, the experiences of composition adjunct programs already in place for native students are a rich source of information. (p. 640)
In the field of EAP (English for Academic Purposes), what might be called the 'traditional' method for instance, in published materials such as the Oxford University Press English Studies Series is to select a number of reading texts, typically simplified, within a particular subject-area, and to affix word-lists, 'comprehension questions' and 'language practice exercises' to them. There are two major criticisms that can be leveled at this approach. First, in looking for passages which are short and autonomous and which will not cause too much alarm or discomfiture to the language-teacher without specialist training in the subject-area. The inclination is to select 'semi-popular' texts (the writer communicating with a wider audience, for instance in scientific journalism) rather than 'academic' texts (the writer communicating with students of the subject, for instance in a textbook; or with his/her peers, for example in a research paper) though it is the latter the student will have to read and not the former. Subsequently, there is the danger that the materials might by stressing small points of linguistic and realistic detail, and by persuading reference to the glossary, be training students in precisely those strategies which has shown to be linked with ineffective language learning.
A newer generation of materials for instance, those prepared by the University of Malaya English ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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