Научная статья на тему 'Reflective teaching in esp'

Reflective teaching in esp Текст научной статьи по специальности «Науки об образовании»

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Аннотация научной статьи по наукам об образовании, автор научной работы — Almabekova Olga A.

Reflective teaching is not a new method, but rather a composite of the best from didactics and methods of teaching. It makes possible to create educational environment of a new type, where both participants of the learning/teaching process are equally responsible for the results, where both agents of the educational process are equally active, but can play different roles, these roles may and should change depending on aims and used techniques. In ESP reflective teaching plays an integrative role in acquiring language knowledge and skills as well as professional skills of a future reflective professional. Reflection here can play three roles of a means (reflective technologies), objective (formation and development of teachers and learners reflective competence) and base of teacher/ learner relations. The efficiency of teaching ESP can rise on condition of concurrent development of reflective abilities by teacher and learner and their participation in reflective practice. Reflection plays here a role of a catalyst in developing learners competencies, motivation to learning, autonomy and critical thinking.

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Текст научной работы на тему «Reflective teaching in esp»

Journal of Siberian Federal University. Humanities & Social Sciences 3 (2010 3) 462-475

УДК 802.0:378.147

Reflective Teaching in ESP

Olga A. Almabekova*

Siberian Federal University 26 Kirenskogo st. Academic Building 1, Krasnoyarsk 660074 Russia 1

Received 28.05.2010, received in revised form 4.06.2010, accepted 18.06.2010

Reflective teaching is not a new method, but rather a composite of the best from didactics and methods of teaching. It makes possible to create educational environment of a new type, where both participants of the learning/teaching process are equally responsible for the results, where both agents of the educational process are equally active, but can play different roles, these roles may and should change depending on aims and used techniques. In ESP reflective teaching plays an integrative role in acquiring language knowledge and skills as well as professional skills of a future reflective professional. Reflection here can play three roles - of a means (reflective technologies), objective (formation and development of teacher's and learner's reflective competence) and base of teacher/ learner relations. The efficiency of teaching ESP can rise on condition of concurrent development of reflective abilities by teacher and learner and their participation in reflective practice. Reflection plays here a role of a catalyst in developing learners' competencies, motivation to learning, autonomy and critical thinking.

Keywords: ESP; reflective teaching; critical thinking; learner-centeredness; learner motivation


A modern society needs competitive professionals, able to promptly react to constantly changing life situations, think creatively, focus their activity on achieving the set goals. That is why the new challenge for the higher education in the 21st century is to balance professional and general education goals in order to meet the changing needs of the society.

In other words, the goal of higher education now is not only to provide information or knowledge, but also to inspire students to have curiosity, courage, imagination, and judgment: the curiosity to learn, the courage to take intellectual risks, the imagination to think about new ways of improving life, the judgment to combine the

imagination with understanding of the realities of the world.

English for Specific Purposes (ESP) is an inseparable part of higher education, so, all mentioned goals refer to ESP directly. ESP teachers need to teach students using English as a means of drawing knowledge across cultures and professional boundaries to solve the world's most complex problems.

To become active agents of innovation, ESP teacher should not only have enough language competence, but also be able to use IT, possess conceptual abilities, and be reflective. This can make both students and teachers of the new age flexible in their thinking and actions, autonomous and creative.

* Corresponding author E-mail address: olgaalma@rambler.ru

1 © Siberian Federal University. All rights reserved

Teaching ESP (English for Specific Purposes) has gone through several stages and was influenced by the traditions in methods of teaching English as a foreign language in general on the one hand and by needs and requirements of the society on the other.

This article argues that one of possible ways to balance professional and general education goals and to develop professional and general competencies in both teachers and students is to introduce reflective teaching in education and teaching ESP in particular.

Reflective teaching in ESP can promote creating a new type of educational environment where both teachers and learners have equal responsibility for learning results but play different roles, reflection being both means (reflective techniques) and aim of teaching and learning (acquiring and developing reflective competence of learners and teachers) as well as basis for the relations of all participants in the educational process.

The author declares that reflective teaching can only be successful if both teachers and learners develop their reflective competence concurrently in reflective practice. On this condition reflection can become a catalyst for developing language, professional and conceptual competences.

Reflective teaching: theoretical background

The word reflection has lately become very fashionable in education. But is reflection just 'a catch-all idea' or it has real importance in ESP teaching practice?

Reflection is mentioned in The Frameworkfor Qualifications of the European Higher Education Area among the most important competences a higher school graduate should possess as it can help learners and future professionals to deal with problems and changing situations, both personal and professional.

In this article under reflection in education we mean three interrelated concepts: reflective knowledge, reflective skills or abilities and reflective techniques or technologies.

According to Michael Wallas (1997), reflection is 'deep processing' of new knowledge in which the learner develops understanding of the essential underlying meaning of it.' An important relation between reflection and knowledge is analysed by Donald Shon, who differentiates between two types of knowledge: received and experiential. The first type - received knowledge (knowing in action) - consists of facts, data, theories and concepts and can be contrasted with the experiential knowledge (reflection) which relates to the learner ongoing professional and social experience.

The clear relationship between reflective thinking and experience can be found in the classical work by John Dewey (1933). He considers that thinking does not occur on general principles, but one can think reflectively only when he is willing to stop and "undergo the trouble of searching". In a simplified version the reflective experience can be a result of 5 stage thinking process:

1. doubt, due to the fact that the situation seems incomplete;

2. interpretation of the facts you already know and looking for a tendency to follow;

3. careful analysis of all consideration able to clarify the problem;

4. development of a hypothesis to make the solution more precise;

5. choosing one position as a plan of action to get the anticipated result and test a hypothesis.

Stages 3 and 4 characterize reflective experience and distinguish it from routine trial and error forms of action.

Donald Shon's analysis of reflective practice has influenced training and conceptions in many professions. Shon (1983) suggested that when an individual comes across something troubling or interesting and tries to make sense of it, one reflects on the implicit understanding, restructures it and puts it in action, reflection-in—action becoming the art for by which practitioners deal with situations of conflict or instability. 'When someone reflects-in-action... he does not separate thinking from doing' and becomes a 'reflective practitioner'.

Tabachnick and Zeichner (2000) give us a more detailed description of reflective teaching experience in US traditions with the focus on reflection upon subject matter; thoughtful application of particular teaching strategy, reflection on students interests and personal growth and humane conditions in training. They make a conclusion and we agree to it completely that a good teaching means referring to elements of all mentioned traditions, thus making reflective teaching an allegation of the best from teaching practices used in a certain situation.

Reflective thinking goes in spiral movement where one turn means overcoming the past meaning and predicting future action. Reflection blocks procedural thinking and opens new horizons for thinking and action. Reflective thinking starts with internal experience and self-learning encourages to action and priority choices, stimulate achieving goals. It can be aimed at self-exploration, exploring natural phenomenon, or a scientific fact or a specific knowledge or another person, thus providing a personality development.

If reflection is such an essential competence, how can it be developed?

The answer is that reflection should be taught as early as possible and the condition of reflection development is the availability of reflective skills

by a teacher. Teacher reflection should be specially shaped and developed in in-service training course. Student reflection should be organized by a teacher, evaluation of teaching made on the base of the students' answers as well as self-evaluation and self- analysis. Student feedback can serve as a way to provide information on a teaching process on the whole and results of a particular lesson. The interrelation of teacher-learner reflection can be presented as follows.

TEACHER <-- external reflection --> STUDENT Internal Internal

reflection reflection

The feedback can be verbal and nonverbal, based of teacher's observation of external manifestation of students during a lesson like being attentive, interested, emotional; mimics, gestures, eye contact. Being able to identify these manifestations can be taught during a specially organised training course for teachers.

There are interesting researches on developing reflective abilities of school pupils. According to The Concept of Developing Teaching, by the end of the 5th form a pupil should possess subject reflection and reflection on knowledge. As for senior pupils, they should have reflective skills as a base of self-education and self-development. Both students and teachers should be taught reflection concurrently and step by step.

For example, for students it can be like movement in their personal development from I cannot do it to I can do, for a teacher - I am able to help a student in problem solution - not able to help. Reflective teacher is also able to find the reason for the educational difficulty, criteria for the solution and the technique based on these criteria. Reflection can be measured by changes in self-evaluation and self-assessment, growth of student's needs like raising activity in learning, higher frequency of speaking inside a micro-group, a larger number of asked questions,

meaningful goal-setting, individuals thinking style.

Reflection is especially important for tertiary students who need reflective skills to plan, organize and regulate their studies independently and meaningfully. Being the fundamental idea for one's personaldevelopment,forauniversitystudent reflection development can go concurrently with his/her professional competence development. This requires organizing educational environment in a certain way so that it is possible to develop students' reflection skills and techniques during their university training.

In English-speaking countries reflective teaching has become an area of educational interest and reality of teaching since 1930es. The global idea was to find the distinction between routinized and reflective teaching. Dewey (1933) and Cruickshank (1987) treat reflection as qualitative characteristic of a teacher having essential fund of knowledge and skills ready for use in analogue experience (technical rationality). According to Tabachnick (1991) it is readiness to adapt the acquired knowledge in the situation of doubt after careful thinking and choosing the most appropriate plan of action.

The most essential issues in reflective teaching are: how to become a reflective teacher, how to develop as a reflective teacher, how to manage class under reflective teaching, etc can be found in a thoroughly Selected Readings for Reflective Teaching by Andrew Pollard (2002).

Methodology underlying reflective teaching varies from typology suggested by Alexander P. (1991), who discriminates 3 different types of knowledge - procedural, conceptual and metacognitive, each having implications for pedagogy; to Moyles' (2001), who supports active learning and Vygotskian underpinnings with his concept of learning as 'assisted performance'. Biott and Eason (1994) suggest promotion of collaborative learning, while learner-centredness

is promoted by many researchers. Tabachnick and Zeichner (1991) describe 4 traditions of reflective teaching in North American education - the academic, the social efficiency, the developmental and the social reconstructionist - and make a conclusion that all these traditions complement each other and echoes of them are found in later researches.

Russian perspective of reflective teaching is presented in V. Lekhtsier's work Reflective Teaching in the Field of English Language Teacher Development (2002). She manages to identify the relations between learner-centredness and American constructivist model of teaching, where learning is considered a two-way process. A learner connects the new received information with the personal experience, thus looking for opportunities to use these new skills or knowledge for changing the system of inner personal knowledge. The best results are received when the knowledge is experiential, got via independent search and skills are practice-oriented. All these ideas refer both to trainee teachers and learners taught by them.

A. Bisyaeva in her work Psychology of Reflective Teacher: Pedagogical Reflection (2004) describes reflective teacher-learner cooperation as based on learner-centered approach with encouraging learner autonomy.

Thus, reflective teaching can be defined as the key factor and universal mechanism of a teaching/learning process management on the base of joint responsibility, research, awareness and evaluation of information by students, its transformation by making an independent micro-aim choice with taking into account individual abilities and needs and defining the trajectory of a personality characteristics development.

This is the very type of teaching that shapes students' ability to make choices within their activity, communication skills and ability to adapt to rapidly changing labour conditions, to

face competition, thus raising his/her professional competence.

We can consider an approach to teaching to be reflective if students are able to evaluate their abilities and results of learning, if they are provided with the opportunity to choose contents and form in their learning, and can independently set real and perspective objectives of a lesson, thus taking an active part in reflection on every lesson stage.

Another important characteristic of reflective teaching is reflective assessment which can be defined as a combination of self-assessment, peer assessment, and control on a teacher's side, appropriate for a specific educational situation. (Harlen, 1992, Black, 1998). One more essential idea about reflective teaching is a system of student encouragement (incentive plan), which can give an opportunity to evaluate a lesson or course result in complex way (Burrell and Bubb, 2000). Students' personal and age peculiarities and multiple intelligences should be also taken into consideration.

Consequently, reflective teaching is not a single method but a composite of the best from different approaches applied to a particular situation.

Problem solving is the heart of reflection as reflection takes place when there is a doubt, an uncertainty, a gap in knowledge. Ideally, a problem should be authentic, real-life and be of personal interest for a learner.

Active methods of learning are an inseparable part of reflective teaching, as reflection is based not on received, but on experiential knowledge, built and constructed by learners in their reflective experience. Reflection is developed through learners' active use of their past experience. Newly-constructed knowledge is built not from the scratch but on the base of already developed skills, understandings, motives.

Active methods raise learners' autonomy. Playing an active part in goal-setting and the process of learning develops learner autonomy in shaping one's own learning style as the basis of a individual professional style in future. All learnt information in this case is treated as being relevant/irrelevant for future career; a learner knows how to set objectives for future personal and professional development.

Learner-centeredness in reflective teaching is based on learner motivation. It means putting learner interests in the focus of teaching, with learners playing an active role in the analyses of gaps in their knowledge and skills in the beginning and the results of development in the process of learning. Motivation thus rises thanks to active learner inclusion in learning process and their autonomy development.

Thus, learning-centeredness in reflective teaching means developing reflective skills in connection with professional competence. Thus students are provided with opportunities to shape strategies necessary not only for learning, but also for personal and professional development in future, like critical thinking.

Reflective teaching in ESP: evolution and Russian perspective

According to Hutchinson and Waters, English for Specific Purposes is a way of teaching/ learning English for specialised subjects with some specific vocational or educational purpose in mind, and there are different needs for different purposes: English for Engineering, English for Tourism, English for Nurses, etc.

As an ESP practitioner I share the idea of Hutchinson and Waters (2000) that 'there is no such thing as an ESP methodology, merely methodologies that have been applied in ESP classrooms', and ESP must be seen as an 'approach to language learning (not as a product) which is based on learner needs and

directed by specific and apparent reasons for learning'.

Learners are a part of the society, thus their needs could be treated as needs of the society on a certain stage of its development. This leads us to one of the reasons of ESP concept emerging, which is "the demands of a Brave new world'. The post-war world with "unprecedented expansion of scientific, technical and economic activity on an international scale" made English an international language. Content-based approach was successful in developing learners' skills in reading specialist texts and writing documents necessary for professional settings.

In the 1970s the Oil crises made western money and knowledge flow into oil rich countries with English as a medium of business and communication. The result was a pressure on English teaching professionals to develop necessary teaching materials and deliver desired courses, while English 'became subject of wishes, needs and demands of people other than English teachers' (Hutchinson and Waters, 1987). Topic and performance-based approaches were predominated by learner needs and the way the language is going to be used in learners' performance.

Late 1990s with even wider and deeper international communication in various spheres made English a global language, a tool of career development and professional communication. The new approach in ESP was learning and learner-oriented with deep understanding of distinction between what learners do (performance) and what enables them to do it (competence), communicative competence being a priority.

In the 21st century led by the needs of society education have been shifting more and more to a new paradigm-developing learners' capacity to apply innovative thinking to unfamiliar challenges. In teaching ESP it means developing

not only learner language competence, but also general competences, like cross-cultural, critical thinking skills and reflection.

The second key factor having a great influence on ESP emerging and development was, according to Gatehouse (2001), revolution in linguistics. Pioneers in revolutionary linguistics focused on the way the language is used in real communication instead of describing the features of language made by traditional linguists.

The discovery was made that English variant changes given the particular context it is used. Consequently, it is possible to tailor language instruction to the specific situation and specific learner needs. This was the further step to develop needs analysis techniques, thus trying to resolve a concern of thinking teachers to decide whether this or that principle or approach is applicable in their specific context.

The third reason for ESP development was achievements in psychology and educational psychology in particular. According to Hutchinson and Waters (1987) educators started focusing not on the methods of language delivery but on different ways the learners acquire language. Learners appeared to use different learning techniques and skills, have their own ideas of how language works and what interests and needs motivate them to learn and use language. These new ideas required ESP teachers to be more learning and learner-centered and to find ways to balance language, educational, and personal goals, be reflective.

The tradition in teaching ESP in Russia has a shorter history, but it had to meet the same concerns as in the world education.

In the late 1990s the educational environment started to change qualitatively as a response to changes in the demand for new structure of knowledge and skills. After signing Bologna Declaration Russian government approved the long-term project of educational system

reform. According to the RF State Council report «Russian Educational policy in modern time" (2000), the aim was to modernize the Russian educational system with the focus on life-long education development and renovation of methodical provision and in-service teacher training, orientation on the federal and local market needs.

New research on methods of teaching ESP emerged (Alexeeeva, Polyakov, Patyaeva, Safronenko, Sysoyev). Advanced teachers made their classroom research, making an attempt to take the best from Russian school of English language methods of teaching (Zymnyaya, Solovova, Milrood, etc.) to teaching ESP and searched for the ways to introduce western ESP ideas of learner and learning-centeredness into their approach.

Russian tertiary teachers' participation in international conferences (for example, 8th ESP Anti-conference in St. Petersburg) confirmed the similarity of areas of concern for ESP teachers all over the world: how to provide the high quality of ESP teaching, how to train students in the appropriate way to meet the changing needs of the labour market and make them able to successfully participate in global educational environment, how to find the ways to concurrently develop professional, language skills and satisfy personal needs, how to encourage learners to life-long-learning.

"The level of Russian graduates' language proficiency in English is often inadequate for meeting the requirements of the professional world they enter. A typical course in English at a Russian university does not usually provide sufficient or adequate skills for those students pursuing either academic or other professional and business careers. Many students have to rely on private lessons to learn how to communicate effectively with overseas colleagues". This is the extract from the Baseline Study conducted in

2000-2002 to explore state of the art of teaching ESP in Russian universities and colleges (2004).

About 5000 respondents included students, public and private sector employers, ESP teachers, graduates and heads of respective departments provided the data, thus making the study the most comprehensive overview ever of the state of ESP in Russia.

The data analysis revealed four major areas concerning the courses, teachers, students and employers:

1. University courses of English generally fail to provide students with the communication skills required for effective study or work. Little variety of classroom activity and few opportunities to use language meaningfully were noticed. The courses are mostly teacher-fronted, while teachers are poorly supplied with modern ESP materials.

2. Teachers of ESP mostly use the grammar-translation method. They base their lessons on written texts, the most common activities being: reading aloud, and translation and grammar drills. Most classroom work is done in Russian. Little systematic classroom action research is done.

3. Though students of ESP are sure that English language competence will help them to become better professionals, but there is little opportunity for students to be involved in planning the learning process because the typical university English lesson is teacher-dominated.

4. Employers of university graduates recognize the importance of English for career prospects. But more than half of the employers consulted in the Baseline Study expressed disappointment with their graduate employees' levels of English and feel a shortage of young

professional people with an appropriate level of knowledge of English.

The results of the Baseline Study provided evidence of the need for change in teaching ESP.

Reflective model of teacher development in ESP

One of the major focuses of the RESPONSE (Russian Educational Support Project on Specialist English) project, initiated as the consequence of the Baseline study, was to be on teacher training, as poorly trained teachers will not know how to use good materials effectively. So, the aim was to get more competent and self-confident teachers by training in modern methods and approaches.

A new in-service course in Teacher Development for ESP practitioners (TDESP course) was designed and later approved by the Research and Methodology Board of RF Ministry of Education. The course aims were to:

■ help and encourage teachers to revisit and develop their own philosophy of teaching ESP through awareness-raising activities, practice and reflective activities

■ involve teachers in reflecting on learning and teaching by exploring both theoretical and practical constructs

■ create opportunities for teachers to share, discuss, try out ideas, techniques, activities and materials

■ provide teachers with key strategies and skills for professional self-development

■ enable teachers to explore individually areas of personal interest in TESP

■ increase ESP teachers' professional confidence (ESP Teacher Development Course, 2005).

The course was to act as a force for solving the major problems in the system: the provision of training in modern methodology and approaches to teaching ESP and instruction in ESP materials

development with the main aim to raise the quality in ESP teaching.

The TDESP training course is divided into three Parts. Part 1 comprises seven modules of classroom work with accompanying self-study materials; Part 2 includes participants' project work (developing materials or syllabus design); and Part 3 involves classroom observation visits.

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Part 1 contains the following modules:

• Module 1: Discovery of Core Principles

(professional diaries; qualities of ESP teacher; terminology; and an ESP mind-map).

• Module 2: Learner and Learning

(motivation and learning; different types of learners; self-study materials on learning strategies).

• Module 3: The Ways We Teach (teaching-learning methods and sections on classroom observation, learner-centeredness, and grammar issues)

• Module 4: Syllabus Exploration/Needs Analysis and Course design (different types of ESP courses and needs analysis, the European Framework of Reference criteria; a practical syllabus design framework)

• Module 5: The Potential of Materials (Authentic and home-made materials for teaching reading and text potential for learning lexis)

• Module 6: Classroom Practice (classroom management; giving effective instructions; and micro-teaching practice).

• Module 7: Rediscovering Principles

(setting new goals, for both participants and their classes; self-development; case-study and project work in ESP; action research; final reflection on the course and their course diaries discussion)

The training materials comprise: notes for trainers (FNs or Facilitators' Notes) which provide advice, suggestions and guidance on procedures to follow when facilitating the different components of the course; and worksheets and handouts for course participants, (PNs or Participants' Notes).

The materials were designed to be both flexible and 'user-friendly', not to be a straitjacket. Trainees are encouraged to adapt the ideas and suggestions given, be open-minded and critical.

The main focus of the course is on reflective model of Teacher development, as opposed to traditional theory-into-practice approach. Reflective model relates his new knowledge to the previous knowledge and the classroom experience. The model designed for the course is called APREL, where

A stands for awareness P practice R revision E evaluation L learning

All the above elements are connected through reflection and form an upward spiral, symbolizing a never-ending process of learning. Teachers come to training with their own personal constructs about language learning and need new

inputs to get aware of the necessity for change and new experience to introduce into their teaching.

Following this model a teacher acts as a reflective practitioner and by deep processing of new knowledge received from the course, develops understanding the meaning underlying it, and then, ideally, relates this new knowledge to his/her previous knowledge and classroom experience.

According to Maclean (1997) the obvious advantage of this approach is that teachers would be learning by doing not just performing the tasks as course participants but carrying out authentic teaching tasks into the classroom with learners, thus, concurrently teaching and learning together with their learners.

Reflection in the course serves as both a means reflective techniques used to achieve the course objectives and an aim i.e. development of reflective competence. Reflective skills can be developed only through specially organized activities, not just by accumulating knowledge about reflection (Bisyaeva).

As for methodology and organization, the process of reflection is encouraged by discussing the considered ESP issue beforehand with prediction and elicitation of the past experience.

Then, teachers reflect during the session on what was happening and how it matches with their prediction. Each activity in the course includes setting objectives, the trainees are asked to reflect back on the set objectives in the end, thus developing the goal-setting skill. Planning skills are developed by giving the participants the opportunity to plan lessons for a certain time limits or to analyze if the given time is enough to do the activity in a proper way.

The course gave the trainees the opportunity to practice both individual and pair/group reflection during the time for individual analysis or group discussion of this or that ESP issue, thus developing the skill of reflective interaction.

Reflection was developed in connection with creative thinking by using metaphorical stories, proverbs, games and encouraging trainees to design metaphors about their teaching.

Teachers under training were given the opportunity to develop reflection in relation to critical thinking. It was made by given the theory of levels of critical thinking and examples of critical thinking development on ESP texts. Application skill was paid a particular attention as every technique used in the course was analysed as being relevant or irrelevant to a concrete teacher reality. Evaluation was, for example, trained through evaluating sites to be used in integrating ICT into the classroom.

Visuals play a very important role in teaching reflection as they provide an additional channel of information and simplify presenting a difficult ESP issue. They also help to develop creative thinking and relate a problem to a practical classroom situation. Trainees were encouraged to make posters to explain their view on a particular ESP issue, TDESP materials also contain many visuals (pictures, cartoons, diagrams, tables to fill in).

One of the most important reflective skills is the ability to see oneself through another

person's eyes. This ability was trained through microteaching lessons, when a group of trainees was divided into 3 micro groups, one playing the role of teachers, another - observers and one more - of learners. Changing "hats" the participants reflected on the way activity had been done giving their feedback and suggesting other ways (techniques, activities) to teach the considered issue.

Reflection was to be developed not only under facilitator's supervision inside class but also independently outside class. One way was reading self-study materials, presented in the book for trainees, with the consequent analyses and discussion in relation to the previous experience and relevance to the particular teaching situation. Another was reflective writing by keeping a diary during the course with regular referring to it during the sessions while discussing burning issues.

Thus, during the first part of the course -contact study sessions - theory-into—practice approach was reversed into reflective model in favour of an opportunity for reflecting on practice and generalizing from experience.

The second part of the course - observation visits has triple aim: to develop reflection through observation and the following feedback on the part of the participants playing the roles of observers, to give the trainees the opportunity to demonstrate reflective teaching in action (planning, goal-setting, learner and learning-centredness, encouraging learner autonomy through active learning, etc) and to check if the final users of the course - students taught by the participating teachers are given the opportunity to take part in reflective teaching/learning process.

The 3rd part of the TDESP course - project work is a vivid manifestation of connection between reflection and creative thinking. Participants are to develop materials or design a syllabus following step-by step approach (they

are given theoretical input in materials design and adaptation in module 5 and the opportunity to apply the knowledge and practice the skills in microteaching and during the lessons suggested for observation) and provided by statement on project work.

The project is to be applicable to a certain student group, appropriate to a certain level of language proficiency, specialism and take into account learners' needs. Here participants should demonstrate their level of critical thinking -analysis, evaluation of potential materials, ability to use the techniques developed in the course in a real teaching situation, synthesis while designing the whole product - teaching materials or a syllabus. Including creative tasks like those based on metaphors, games, role plays are also encouraged.

But the most important criteria of a project work success - is the focus on meeting certain needs - language, professional, learning, conceptual of a particular student audience and the ability of a teacher to be proactive in reflecting on potential difficulties with using the developed materials.

By the end of RESPONSE project in 2004 approximately 350 ESP teachers from 14 cities had got training in TDESP course. According to observation reports of the project team and the workshop evaluation forms, the most important and valuable experiences of the participants was listed as learner-centered training, a reflective approach to teaching/learning, the importance of teamwork, eclecticism in classroom teaching methodology.

The experimental base for researching the course impact on the teachers' abilities to use reflective teaching in ESP classroom is Siberian Federal University, where TDESP course was taught at the Department of Retraining by a group of trainers, the author of the article being at the head. During 2003-2009 years 82 ESP

teachers were awarded with TDESP certificates and more than 150 lessons were observed. Both teachers and students were asked to fill-in questionnaires on the relevance of method used after participation in the course, some questions particularly focused on developing reflection, critical thinking, learner-centeredness and autonomy, active teaching and problem-solving techniques.

The reflective model of teacher development proved to be successful not only from the trained teachers' point of view, but also from the results of Student questionnaires and oral interviews, taken from students taught by the teachers under training. The students who are considered to be the final users of reflective teaching noted higher motivation in their studying English, wider variety of tasks, used by the teachers and opportunities to actively participate not only in the learning process inside the classroom, but also in reallife tasks, like project work.

Lesson observation analyses confirmed the data from Teacher and Student questionnaires. Teacher speaking time decreased, most students were active in their pair and group work and readily participated in problem solving and practice based tasks, peer assessment, the atmosphere in most classes being friendly and positive.

We believe that the most important point mentioned in the student interviews were their feeling that ESP has a practical value for their becoming a better professional. They noted their being provided with opportunities and acquired abilities to use ESP skills for meeting their professional needs like making research on the chosen problem for their course or graduation papers by using English and American sources and for personal development like planning and goal setting skills helpful for everyday learning management and future professional life.


Reflective teaching in ESP is not a new method, but rather a composite of the best from didactics and methods of teaching: focus on the learner and learning, problem-solving approach, using active methods and rising learner motivation through meaningful practice-oriented tasks and considering learner individuality. Reflective teaching makes it possible to create educational environment of a new type, where both participants of the learning/teaching process are equally responsible for the results, where both agents of the educational process are equally active, but can play different parts, which may and should change depending on set aims and used techniques.

Reflective teaching can be applied to teaching ESP for developing language knowledge and skills in integration with professional skills of a future reflective professional. Here reflection has a triple role - of a means (reflective technologies), objective (formation and development of teacher's and learners' reflective competence) and base of teacher/learner relations.

On the example of ESP we have proved that the efficiency of teaching a specific subj ect can rise due to concurrent acquisition and development of reflective abilities by teacher and learner and their participation in reflective practice. Reflection acts here as a catalyst in developing learners' competencies, motivation to learning, autonomy and critical thinking.


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Рефлексивное обучение английскому языку для профессиональных целей

О.А. Алмабекова

Сибирский федеральный университет Россия 660074, Красноярск, Киренского, 26 корпус 1 (Ж)

Рефлексивное обучение (РО) - это не новый метод, а скорее сплав всего лучшего, что имеется в дидактике и методике преподавания. РО позволяет создать образовательное пространство нового типа, где оба участника учебного процесса берут на себя равную ответственность за результаты обучения, где оба субъекта учебного процесса одинаково активны, но играют разные роли, при этом роли могут и должны меняться в зависимости от целей учения, применяемых техник.

При рефлексивном подходе обучение АПЦ основано на интегрированной модели учебно-познавательной и рефлексивной деятельности как среды коммуникации, сотрудничества, саморазвития личности студентов и преподавателей.

РО способствует повышению эффективности преподавания АПЦ, если рефлексивная компетенция формируется целенаправленно и взаимосвязанно в результате специально организованной деятельности. В этом случае рефлексия играет роль катализатора развития языковых и профессиональных компетенций студента, его критического мышления, повышения автономии и мотивации к учению.

Ключевые слова: английский язык для профессиональных целей; рефлексивный подход к обучению; личностно-ориентированный подход; рефлексивная компетенция; критическое мышление.

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