REDEFINING THE ESP FOR BUSINESS COURSES IN HIGHER EDUCATION: ARE ESP COURSES BY NATURE AUTONOMY FOSTERING?

Marijana Marjanovikj-Apostolovski

DOI Number
-
First page
495
Last page
508

Abstract


Digitalization and the pressure put on universities to produce graduates who not only meet but also exceed the requirements of prospective employers impose the need for redefining the nature and role of today’s ESP courses. Alongside mastering the language and increasing the proficiency level, ESP for business courses should also strive to assist students in developing the easily transferrable generic competences, which is in line with the concept of life-long learning. In order to simultaneously develop linguistic and business competences, the ESP for business courses in tertiary education need to be learner centred, interactive, autonomy requiring and autonomy promoting. One way to ensure this is to actively involve students in the process of teaching materials selection and evaluation; incorporate self-assessment and peer-assessment as well as practices for making students reflect not only on their language learning experience but also reflect on their motivation and needs for learning Business English.

 

In search of an answer to the above posed question, this paper summarises a field research conducted with the ESP for business undergraduate students and teachers at the South East European University (SEEU) in the Republic of Macedonia. The objective of the field research is to give a real and detailed insight into the willingness of students to take a proactive role in the language learning process and the readiness of teachers to leave the comfort zone of being entirely in control of the teaching process. Moreover, this small-scale study aims to offer a perspective of the inclination of ESP for business teachers at SEEU to consider even pre-experienced students as partners in the teaching/learning context. Based on the findings, the paper derives a number of implications and makes specific recommendations with reference to the ESP for business courses at SEEU.

Key words: ESP for business; SEEU; language learning autonomy; role and nature of ESP


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