52 minutes | Jun 26th 2014

Episode 012: “Where can I get a Brazilian wax?”

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The Minimal Pair: Episode 012Show Notes: The Minimal Pair Title: “Where can I get a Brazilian wax?”Episode no: 012Date: Recorded on 6/25/14Topics in Language LearningEnglish for Specific PurposesSources:http://www.uwinnipeg.ca/index/elp-esp http://iteslj.org/Articles/Gatehouse-ESP.html http://www.usingenglish.com/articles/teaching-english-for-specific-purposes-esp.html What is it? How is it different from ESL? (from UsingEnglish.com)Types of learnersTypes of instruction Learner motivation What are “specific purposes”?BusinessLawArchitectureEngineeringMedicineTourismRestaurant industryInstructor responsibilities (from UsingEnglish.com) and challenges Setting goals Learning environment Evaluating studentsWho is qualified to teach it?Is a TESL certification enough?Do instructors with content specific backgrounds (like an MBA or J.D.) have an advantage?[19:10]MethodologyAuthentic situationsOnline presence EmailSocial mediaStudents who are new to the country and dealing with lots of “real-world” issuesFinding housingSetting up utilitiesFiguring out public transportation; getting cars and driver’s licenses Getting acquainted with a new city: what to do, where to go for fun, etc.Overlooked things: where to get a haircut, how American pharmacies work, etc. Remaining approachable; validating their challengesHaving authentic situations in ESP classesProduct pitchWriting emailsGood news vs. bad newsRequests & remindersJob interviews“Water-cooler” conversation skillsBook recommendation: Americans at Work: A Guide to the Can-Do People (by Craig Storti)[36:15]Culturally speaking…High-context vs. low-context culturesSources:http://www.marin.edu/buscom/index_files/Page605.htm Worldwide ERCWhat’s the difference?High-context – indirect (Asia, Middle East, Africa, South America)Less likely to share thoughts and feelingsStress expressed non-verbally or accidentallyConversation is monotone (lack of inflection and enthusiasm)Communication is indirect (evasive, talking around the point, tactful, ambiguous)Conflict (harmony valued)Low-context – direct (North America, most of Western Europe)More open with thoughts and feelingsDon’t hide stress/tensionConversation is enthusiastic Communication is direct (precise, blunt, to the point)Conflict is a means of expressing (and having pride for) personal opinionTips for teachersMake students aware of the difference (validate both)Be specific with directions for assignments (putting it on paper helps indirect communicators) Modeling being direct (i.e. through teacher feedback)Prefacing authentic situations with a discussion about being direct vs. indirectEncouraging classroom participation (challenging for indirect communicators)Students who want to tell the teacher how to teach
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