Forming competencies of future ecologists in the process of teaching English language
В данной статье представлен краткий обзор некоторых необходимых компетенций будущих экологов. Ключевые слова: образование, коммуникативная компетенция, информационные технологии, студент, английский язык.
Chair of the general pedagogics and ethnopedagogics
International Kazakh-Turkish university named after A.Yasavi
B. Sattarkhanov Str., 29, Turkestan,
This article presents an overview of some necessary competencies of future ecologists.
Key words: education, communicative competence, information technologies, student, english language.
The choice of the teaching practices described was determined by their accordance with the following pedagogic concepts: communicative approach; problem-solving approach; vocational orientation in TEL; learner-centered approach.
Competence is translated from the Latin «competentia» means a subject a person is versed in, a special area of knowledge and experience. A person who is competent in a certain area possesses a certain standard of knowledge and skills which makes it possible for him to judge soundly about this very area and act efficiently in it. Competence is a totality of interrelated qualities of a person (knowledge, skills, experience, command of methods of working), assigned with respect to a certain sphere of objects and processes and necessary for efficient and productive activity in respect to them .
The idea of «competence» is not a new one in methodology of teaching foreign languages.
For instance linguistic competences have been discussed for a long time and are used by specialists in the area of methods of teaching foreign languages where the communicative competence is also analyzed. Recently the concept of «competence» has started to be studied at the level of general didactics, general pedagogic and methodology. It can be explained by its system-practical functions and its integration role in general education.
Level of Competence refers to the possession of a relevant competence including a personal attitude towards it and towards the object of activity. Competence is understood as a requirement (norm) relation to the standard of achievement of a pupil and Level of Competence is understood as his personal quality or totality of qualities and a minimum experience in the relevant activity. A level of competence achieved is always something which has a personal dimension to it, which is reflected in a pupil’s personal qualities .
In recent investigations the following functions of competence and level of competence in relation to the personality of future ecologists are singled out :
- reflect and develop personal relevance to future ecologists of the of the objects under study;
- characterize the personal component of future ecologists’ education, the degree of his abilities and practical skills;
- set a minimum standard of experience in practical activities;
- develop possibilities of solving real problems in everyday life – from common problems to professional and social ones;
- they are dimensional – they certain to all the basic groups of personal qualities of a learner to be developed;
- represent integral characteristics of the quality of future ecologists’ training;
- in the aggregate, they determine and reflect the functional competence of future ecologists.
Educational competence is a totality of interconnected semantic orientations, knowledge, skills and future ecologists’ experience which are necessary for performing personally and socially relevant productive activities in relation to the objects of reality .
Structural components of educational competence:
- type in their general hierarchy (key, general subject, subject);
- circle of objects of reality with respect to which the competence is introduced;
- its determination by social and practical factors as well as its significance (why and what for it is necessary in society);
- personal significance/relevance of competence (in what and what for a pupil has to be competent);
- knowledge of a range of objects of reality;
- skills and experience related to this very range of real objects;
- methods used in respect to them;
- minimal standard of experience of a learner in the sphere of competence;
- «indicators» - tests and tasks which are used to determine the level of a learner’s competence.
Functions and content of educational competence:
- multifunctional, in as much as they let future ecologists to solve problems of different spheres of life;
- they are shaped by means of the contents of education;
- they give a possibility to construct purposes, the contents of education (Educational standards) and educational technologies as a system;
- they transcend individual subjects – through separate elements or as a whole they are present in different subjects and educational spheres.
- allow using theoretical knowledge to solve specific problems;
- allow picking out clear criteria to assess the success of students in achieving the purposes and aims in question;
- are verified in the process of performing a certain series of actions.
Communicative competence is an ability to solve by means of foreign language communicative problems important for an individual and for society, arising in the everyday, educational, professional or cultural spheres of life. It is an ability to realize linguistic competence in different situations of communication .
Subject competence is a totality of knowledge, experience, skills which are formed during the process of studying a subject. Subject competence, acquired during the process of studying a language as an educational subject and characterizing a certain level of language, includes the following types of competence – linguistic, speech, communicative competence, etc .
Professional competence is an ability of a teacher for successful professional activity. It includes knowledge of didactics, psychology, linguistics, psycholinguistics, theory and methods of teaching foreign languages and other sciences which are important for a successful and effective activity of a teacher, possession of professional skills (constructive, organizational, communicative) and skills in organizing students’ activity and in the management of this activity. Professional competence is one of the main goals of training in any
Lexical competence is the ability to recognize and use words in a language in the way that speakers of the language use them. Lexical competence includes understanding the different relationships among families of words and the common collocations of words.
Speech competence (is a part of communicative competence) is a command of the methods of forming and formulating thoughts using the foreign language, and an ability to use these methods in the process of speech perception and speech production.
Discourse competence is used to refer to two related, but distinct abilities. Textual discourse competence refers to the ability to understand and construct monologues or written texts of different genres, such as narratives, procedural texts, expository texts, persuasive (hortatory) texts, descriptions and others. These discourse genres have different characteristics, but in each genre there are some elements that help make the text coherent and other elements which are used to make important points distinctive or prominent .
Learning a language involves learning how to relate these different types of discourse in such a way that hearers or readers can understand what is going on and see what is important. Likewise it involves being able to relate information in a way that is coherent to the readers and hearers.
Cultural competence is a totality of knowledge about the country of the foreign language. Such knowledge provides the learner with a certain level of skills and experience in using national-cultural component of the language, speech etiquette and non-verbal means of communication. Cultural competence is the ability to understand behavior from the standpoint of the members of a culture and and to behave in a way that would be understood by the members of the culture in the intended way. Cultural competence therefore involves understanding all aspects of a culture, but particularly the social structure, the values and beliefs of the people, and the way things are assumed to be done .
Linguo - Cultural competence is knowledge of national customs, traditions, features of the country of in question; an ability to extract culturally relevant information from units of the language and an ability to use this information to achieve effective communication .
Socio Cultural competence means familiarity of students with national cultural specific features of linguistic behavior and an ability to use those components of socio - cultural context. That is relevant for production and perception of speech from native speakers’ point of view: customs, rules, norms, social conventions, rituals, social stereotypes, knowledge of regional geography etc .
Interactional competence involves knowing and using the mostly-unwritten rules for interaction in various communication situations within a given speech community and culture. It includes, among other things, knowing how to initiate and manage conversations and negotiate meaning with other people. It also includes knowing what sorts of body language, eye contact, and proximity to other people are appropriate, and acting accordingly .
In order to form and develop the competencies of future ecologists described above it is necessary to use some modern methods and techniques of TEL. For instance the following modern methods and techniques of TEL can be used.
Language Portfolio is a set of documents that contains information about student’s language skills- writing, reading, speaking, listening, and translation, and samples of those skills. It promotes language learning and the development of cultural competence. Most often it consists of three parts: a language passport, a language biography and a dossier. Its language passport allows language learners to summarize their language experiences and to describe them in a meaningful way using the terminology of an international rating scale. The language biography focuses on the five C’s of language learning: Communication, Culture, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities. It provides learners with an opportunity to assess for themselves their language learning progress in five skill areas. It also encourages them to set personal goals in language learning and intercultural competence development, and to plan strategies to meet their individual goals. The dossier both stores samples of a learner’s speaking and writing, and documents results of the learner’s language tests and other professional certifications.
An essay is usually a short piece of writing, which is often written from an author’s personal point of view and requires an independent research. In each vocational course students should be advised to read books in a EL and complete the given tasks related to their study in the essay format. The reading of both exclusively professional and non-professional texts in FL selected according to the students’ level and the progress in the study programme is of great significance and should be widely accepted in TEL at technical universities. Essay is a good introduction to patterned writing which is the basis for much more complicated writing that is done later in personal and professional life. Students are taught to produce generative essay writing, developing the plan, drafting, seeking and receiving feedback, revising, proof-reading, and reflecting along with the development of the skills to searching and selecting information form additional sources such as the internet, specialized journals and other special publications. Learning to write essays improves future ecologist’s critical thinking skills, develops their ability to systematically compare and contrast subjects, and encourages creativity and originality.
Making oral presentations is one of the important components of a EL course as it develops future ecologist’s oral presentation and public speaking skills. Asking future ecologists to give presentations gives the following benefits:
- it gives the presenting future ecologists a good opportunity to practice unaided speaking;
- it gives the other future ecologists good listening practice;
- it increases the presenting future ecologist’s confidence when using a EL;
- it can be a good diagnostic and assessment device;
- it can be good practice for the real situation when future ecologists may actually need to give presentations in a EL in their professional lives;
- it is an excellent generator of spontaneous discussion and\\or essay topics.
Future ecologists will need the skills of presenting information and conducting briefings in their future work; therefore they should be taught to give instructive and demonstration speeches and presentations followed by discussions. Besides these are the basic types of presentations to teach to non-linguistic students, since they are simple and their more immediate structures lend themselves for use even to the students with the language knowledge of pre-intermediate and intermediate levels.
Team teaching in the most general sense encompasses a wide variety of arrangements. For example, a foreign language and a computer science teacher might work together to form an interdisciplinary unit on professional communication in IT industry. The professional communication would be unifying idea, but the English teacher would link it to Language Arts by studying vocabulary and formats, and teaching students how to design letters, faxes, documents, etc. The science teacher might teach about the real communication systems that exist at enterprises in IT industry, present the service hierarchies, highlight the communication flows, and help them research the local companies.
The Golden Rule of the team teaching is never to take anything for granted and explicitly discuss everything, because when expectations are unclear or vastly different, the essential rapport quickly breaks down. Clear communication on the part of both members of the teaching team is essential to the success of the relationship and the realization of teaching objectives. Communication is perhaps rendered more difficult for teams made up of teachers from different cultural backgrounds which value radically different communication styles. Personal conflicts, whether they are gender-based, cultural or personal have no place within classroom. Despite any differences of opinion, each teacher should remain respectful and professional towards the other in the classroom. Students will be quick to pick up on any tensions and may try to exploit them. In the classroom, the most important people are the students-teachers should set aside personal difficulties and make teaching their number one priority.
Team teaching in EL instruction requires thorough planning and preparation as well as following some rules and requirements:
1. Flexibility of the teachers, their being ready to change the class planning according to the current situation;
2. Compatibility of the teachers, both personal and professional, implying trust, cooperativeness, conciliatory spirit, and commitment to collaborative practice;
3. Equal status of the teachers and their responsibilities, regardless of their age, experience and education;
4. Common goal orientation and joint coordination of activities;
5. Using teaming approaches for problem-solving and programme implementation;
The advantages of the teaching methods and techniques mentioned above are numerous and their employment contributes to the development of the following future ecologists’ skills and abilities:
1. Language learning and intercultural skills.
2. Communication skills: written, oral and non-verbal.
3. Critical thinking skills.
4. Reflective learning abilities.
5. Organizational skills and professional knowledge.
6. Collaborative learning and team working skills.
7. Life-long learning habits.
8. Managerial and workplace communication skills such as holding a meeting, describing a project, solving a problem, negotiating a contact, giving a presentation, etc.
All of these methods and techniques force future ecologists into real- life situations and require them to get involved into managerial and workplace communication.
It should be noted that one of the main ideas of introducing these methods and techniques into EL courses is to provide opportunities for realistic learning situations, in particular to enable future ecologists to learn and use a EL in tasks related to and facilitating their study of other university courses. The language portfolio, essays and research, oral presentations and teaching in teams are the areas of the most pronounced collaboration between a FL and other university courses as the tasks should be set in such a way to include the content covered as assignments or projects in professional courses. This not only enables the connecting of the professional knowledge and language knowledge in a meaningful way, but also promotes peer and collaborative learning in a realistic environment, which is one of the key methodological recommendations in contemporary ELT.
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ФОРМИРОВАНИЕ компетенций будущих экологов
В процессе обучения АНГЛИЙСКОМУ ЯЗЫКУ
K.M. Беркимбаева, М.М. Акешова
Кафедра общей педагогики и этнопедагогики
Международный казахско-турецкий университет имени A.Ясави
Ул. B. Саттарханова, 29, Туркестан, Республика Казахстан, 161200
В данной статье представлен краткий обзор некоторых необходимых компетенций будущих экологов.
Ключевые слова: образование, коммуникативная компетенция, информационные технологии, студент, английский язык.
Автор оригинала: K.M. Berkimbaev, M.M. Akeshova
Источник оригинала: Вестник РУДН, серия "Информатизация образования", №4, 2012
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