esp and eop

July 30, 2017 | Author: usama2004 | Category: English Language, Learning, Teachers, Information, Knowledge
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EAP AND EOP The present context of globalization has multiple effects on the lives of people across the globe. And for all those countries where English is not the first language the significance of learning, teaching and using English cannot be understated. Linguists, researchers and teachers, textbook writers, publishers In the context of English Language Teaching (ELT), are all agreed that (i) English is an international language (EIL) and has to be taught as such, (ii) English has many varieties, (iii) English is the language for research, trade and commerce, and higher education, and (iv) within the next decade there will be more non-native speakers of English than the native speakers (that is, those whose mother tongue is English). Consequently, the role/importance of English at the undergraduate level of education in Pakistan cannot be minimized. In addition to that, students, teachers and others need to have greater clarity about the nomenclatures used in regard to the teaching and learning of English. This article attempts to present the distinctions in the nomenclatures, and to highlight the role and importance of English for the undergraduate students in Pakistani institutions. Why is English an international language? It is an international language because it was considered to be the language of political, economic and military power, until the early 2000 A.D. The Iraq war (2003) was looked upon by many people as an economic opportunity in more ways than one. As mentioned in an article by Hadley in 2004, (and by Edge also in 2004) , English teachers would be required in Iraq to help with the reconstruction work by facilitating the policies that the tanks were sent to impose. Hence, the war itself created a lucrative opportunity for all those involved in the game of teaching and learning English. In addition, USA being looked upon as a superpower was worth immolating in terms of its culture and language. A noted Pakistani researcher, Dr Tariq Rahman mentioned in one his books (2000) that English is in demand by students, their parents and aspiring members of the salariat because it is the language of the elitist domains of power not only in Pakistan but also internationally. He presented data from David Crystals 1997 book that One-third of the worlds newspapers are published in English dominant countries... 80% of the electronically stored information is in English ... The CNN and BBC are in English ... between 80 85% motion pictures are in English... 180 nations have adopted the recommendations of the Civil Aviation Organization about English terminology ... increasing numbers of students take the IELTS and TOEFL exams each year in more than 110 countries ... nearly 90 per cent of research articles (in most subjects) are in English. In many contexts it has been felt that students require adequate English language skills in order for them to cope with the academic demands of their study program. Hence a course of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) is designed and taught to them. Such a course includes the teaching of such skills as critical thinking, critical reading, listening for global and specific comprehension (e.g. lectures, talks, announcements, etc), writing essays, terms papers, critical analysis, reports, participation in group discussions, making oral presentations, etc. One may ask: How is English for Specific Purposes different from what is called general English? A simple answer is The most important difference lies in the learners and their purposes for learning English. One can add to it by saying that ESP concentrates more on language in context than on teaching grammar and language structures. It covers subjects varying from accounting or computer science to tourism and business management. In some cases, people with inadequate proficiency in English need to be taught to handle specific jobs. In such cases English is taught for specific purposes so that the concerned employees can perform their job requirements efficiently. However, English for

Specific Purposes (ESP) has a wide scope and superimposes other nomenclatures such as EOP and EAP. An article on ESP available on the Internet says: ESP (English for Specific Purposes) course aims are determined by the needs of a specific group of learners. ESP is often divided into EAP (English for Academic Purposes) and EOP (English for Occupational Purposes). Further sub-divisions of EOP are sometimes made into business English, professional English (e.g. English for doctors, lawyers) and vocational English (e.g. English for tourism, nursing, aviation, brick-laying). Do you think the requirements for English of a medical, or social science or science and technology student would be exactly alike? Or would someone in the tourism industry have a similar manner of using English as an air traffic control, or a share market analyst or a technical writer? While there will be some similarities in the use of common vocabulary there will be great dissimilarities in the way they use words, phrases, expressions in writing or speaking to get on with their jobs. Such differences are mainly due to the types of communication they have to achieve which make different demands on their knowledge and skills in English. Thus professionals such as air traffic controllers, or those who work in laboratories or in the mining / drilling /space stations often require knowledge of English that is very specific to the kind of work they are doing (English for Occupational Purposes). Learners in the ESP classes are usually adults who are generally aware of the purposes for which they will need to use English. A useful website for English language teachers discusses ESP in the following words: Dudley-Evans, a notable authority in the field of ESP, in 2001 defined the absolute characteristics of ESP as: ESP is designed to meet the specific needs of the learners. ESP makes use of the underlying methodology and activities of the specialism it serves. It is centred not only on the language (grammar, lexis, register), but also the skills, discourses and genres appropriate to those activities. It may therefore be concluded that the kind of English some adult learners learn for employment could also be referred to as EOP, while undergraduate students learn EAP so that they can cope better with their studies in contexts where the medium of instruction is English. ENGLISH FOR ACADEMIC PURPOSES (EAP): The “specific purpose” most common within the university students is the reading of specialist literature in English. Consequently there is a consensus reduce the teaching of grammar is based to the minimum necessary for understanding academic texts. The emphasis is largely on a general course content to cover common problems (such as reading strategies), rather than specific courses according to the student‟s field (e.g. English for Engineers). ENGLISH FOR OCCUPATIONAL PURPOSES (EOP): Hutchinson and Waters (1987) do note that there is not a clear-cut distinction between EAP and EOP: "= people can work and study simultaneously; it is also likely that in many cases the language learnt for immediate use in a study environment will be used later when the student takes up, or returns to, a job". Perhaps this explains Carter's rationale for categorizing EAP and EOP under the same type of ESP. It appears that Carter is implying that the end purpose of both EAP and EOP are one in the same:

employment. However, despite the end purpose being identical, the means taken to achieve the end is very different indeed. WHAT IS A “COURSE DESIGN”? It is the process by which the raw data about a learning need is interpreted to produce an integrated series of teaching-learning experiences. WHAT IS ITS AIM? To lead the learners to a particular state of knowledge. This entails the use of the theoretical and empirical information available to produce a syllabus, to develop a methodology for teaching those materials and to establish evaluation procedures by which progress towards the specified goals will be measured. What learners need and want may conflict. We must remember that there are external constraints (classroom facilities/ time) that will restrict what is possible. We also have to take into account our own theoretical views and experiences of the classroom. There are many different approaches to ESP course design. Language centered approach However, it has a number of weaknesses: 1. It starts from the learner and their needs. It might be considered a learner-centred approach. The learner is simply used as a means of identifying the target situation. 2. It is a static and inflexible procedure, which can take little account of the conflicts and contradictions that are inherent in any human endeavour. 3. It appears to be systematic. 4. It gives no acknowledgement to factors which must inevitably play a part in the creation of any course. Data is not important in itself. 5. The lg-centred analysis of target situation data is only at the surface level. It reveals very little about the competence that underlies the performance. This course design fails to recognise the fact that, learners being people, learning is not a straightforward, logical process. A lg-centred approach says: „This is the nature of the target situation performance and that will determine the ESP course.‟ 2. SKILLS-CENTRED COURSE DESIGN It is a reaction both to the idea of specific registers of English as a basis for ESP and to the practical constraints on learning imposed by limited time and resources. Its aim is not to provide a specified corpus of linguistic knowledge but to make the learners into better processors of information. It is founded on 2 fundamental principles, one theoretical, the other pragmatic: 1. Underlying any lg behaviour are certain skills and strategies, which the learner uses to produce or comprehend discourse. 2. The pragmatic basis for the skills-centred approach derives from a distinction made by Widdowson (1981) between goal-oriented courses and process-oriented ones. The emphasis in the ESP course in not on achieving a particular set of goals, but on enabling the learners to achieve what they can within the given constraint.

The role of needs analysis in this approach is twofold: 1. it provides a basis for discovering the underlying competence that enables people to perform in the target situation. 2. it enables the course designer to discover the potential knowledge and abilities that the learner bring to the ESP classroom. This approach takes the learner more into account: it reviews lg in terms of how the mind of the learner processes it rather that as an entity in itself it tries to build on the positive factors that the learners bring to the course (previous knowledge), rather that just on the negative idea of „lacks‟. It frames its objectives in open-ended terms, so enabling learners to achieve at least sth. This approach still approaches the learner as a user of lg rather than as a learner of lg. The processes it is concerned with are the processes of lg use not of lg learning. 3. LEARNING-CENTERED APPROACH LEARNER-CENTERED APPROACH •

It is based on the principle that learning is totally determined by the learner even though Ts can influence what is taught

The learner is one factor to consider in the learning process, but not the only one.


It is seen as a process in which the learner use what knowledge or skills they have to make sense of the flow of new information.

It is an internal process, which is crucially dependent upon the knowledge the learner already have and their ability an motivation to use it.

It is a process of negotiation between individuals and the society. Society sets the target and the individuals must do their best to get as close to that target as is possible.

This approach has 2 implications: 1. Course design is a negotiated process. The ESP learning situation and the target situation will both influence the nature of the syllabus, materials, methodology and evaluation procedures. 2. Course design is a dynamic process. It doesn‟t move in a linear fashion. Needs and resources vary with time. The course design, therefore, needs to have built-in feedback channels to enable the course to respond to developments.

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