The Challenges of a 21st Century Foreign Language Teacher in an Academic Context

Monday 13 May | Tuesday 14 May | Wednesday 15 May | Thursday 16 May | Friday 17 May

Wednesday 15 May

The Challenges of a 21st Century Foreign Language Teacher in an Academic Context,
Ms. Jolanta Rutkowska, Jagiellonian University, Poland
Place: Room F305

Time: 8.30 – 10.00
Description: Nowadays we are observing the ever increasing internationalisation of higher education. As a result, English and other foreign languages are becoming more and more important in various fields. Moreover, student and teacher mobility, both real and virtual, has created a greater demand for LSP (Language for Specific Purposes) and CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) approaches to teaching and learning. This demand poses new challenges and opportunities that FL teachers are expected to address. Foreign language courses at tertiary level have had to abandon the traditional language -focused approach and, instead, adopt a new one where language and content are integrated. The benefits of this new approach to students are obvious. However, the above mentioned integration of language and content is likely to pose quite a challenge for us, foreign language teachers. The proposed roundtable will bring together foreign language teachers from various universities to discuss trends, challenges and possible solutions and innovative ideas regarding teaching Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) in an academic context. For instance: How to teach a foreign language through content that we know nothing or very little about? How to prepare such a course? Should syllabus be consulted with content teachers or with students? Where to get the materials? Should we use coursebooks or authentic materials? How to assess students’ work? Should we value only language or content as well? And finally, where does LSP end and CLIL begin? Through these interactions I hope the roundtable can help LSP teaching community in launching an effort to develop a strategy that aims to address the challenges of teaching a foreign language while having little or no content knowledge at all.