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From an Error Typology via a Model of Communicative Competence for Written Discourse towards Support for Finnish University Students Writing in their Disciplines. Assessing the situation: What factors shape our EAP courses in written communication?.

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slide1

From an Error Typology via a Model of Communicative Competence for Written Discourse towards Support for Finnish University Students Writing in their Disciplines

Eva Braidwood and Suzy McAnsh, University of Oulu Language Centre

assessing the situation what factors shape our eap courses in written communication
Assessing the situation:What factors shape our EAP courses in written communication?
  • Policy frameworks and guidelines
    • qualifications frameworks in the EHEA
    • Finnish UniTIE project: descriptors for university writing courses
  • State of the art in the EAP profession
    • research publications
    • numerous guidebooks into academic writing in English
  • Students’ skills and needs
    • publications on SLA, error analysis
    • preliminary study of prevalent problems, 2010
slide3

Preliminary study of prevalent problems, 2010

  • Typology of salient problems
    • analysis of texts produced by Finnish university students in their field-related English course

 see Handout 1 for examples

slide4
But what is missing?What else do we need to consider in assessing the writing of our EAP writing students?

Present study:

Towards a representation of communicative competence required in academic / scientific written discourse

Eva Braidwood and Suzy McAnsh, University of Oulu Language Centre

slide5

Chronological evolution of ‘communicative competence’

Expanded from Celce-Murcia 2007

competences for developing

confidence in specialist discourse

Eva Braidwood and Suzy McAnsh, University of Oulu Language Centre

celce murcia 2007 revised schematic representation of communicative competence
Celce-Murcia, 2007: Revised schematic representation of ‘communicative competence’

PROBLEM: static model – components need to “expand or contract depending on pedagogical objectives and the needs of the learner”

representing

oral

communication!

proposed communicative competence model for academic scientific written discourse
Proposed communicative competence modelfor academic / scientific written discourse
  • Six competence areas, but definition and component features differ inwriting
  • Significance of individual competences varies
  • At work simultaneously or in turn

socio-cultural

discourse

linguistic

strategic

interactional

formulaic

  • see Handout 2

for details

slide8
Significance of present study
  • model encourages awareness of areas where problems might arise
  • provides tool for identifying and exploring prevalent problems
    • for a particular discourse (genre, purpose)
    • in a particular discourse community (context, discipline)
  • also accounts for problems that “aren’t there”
  • guides teachers in selecting focus of course content

Future directions

  • explore implications of target degree competences in particular disciplines
  • compare students’ present level with target graduate level
  • expand study to identify prevalent problems for students (according to L1,disciplinary genres, level of proficiency in English, level of expertise in discipline-specific discourse community)
slide10

References

Bachman, L. F. (1990). Fundamental considerations in language testing. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Bhatia, V. (1997). ‘Applied Genre Analysis and ESP’. In T. Miller (ed.), Functional Approaches to Written Text: Classroom Applications. Washington: United States Information Agency

Canale, M. (1983). ‘ From communicative competence to communicative language pedagogy.’ In, J. C. Richards & R. W. Schmidt (eds), Language and communication. London: Longman, 2-28.

Canale, M & Swain, M. (1980). ‘Theoretical Bases of Communicative Approaches to Second Language Teaching and Testing.’ Applied Linguistics, 1. 1-47.

Celce-Murcia, M. (2007). ‘Rethinking the Role of Communicative Competence in Language Teaching.’ In Alcón Soler E & MP Safont Jordà (eds),. Intercultural Language Use and Language Learning. Dordrecht: Springer. 41–57.

Celce-Murcia, M., Dörnyei, Z, and Thurrell, S. (1995). ‘A pedagogical framework for communicative competence: A Pedagogically motivated model with content specifications.’ Issues in Applied Linguistics, 6(2), 5–35

Eva Braidwood and Suzy McAnsh, University of Oulu Language Centre