Students have gained a proficiency level in listening and speaking which is at least equivalent to level B2+ (minimum) or C1 of the CEFR:|
• Can understand standard spoken language, live or broadcast, on both familiar and unfamiliar topics normally encountered in social, professional or academic life and identify speaker viewpoints and attitudes as well as the information content.
• Can follow lectures, talks and reports and other forms of academic/professional presentation which are propositionally and linguistically complex.
• Can use the language fluently, accurately and effectively, with few significant vocabulary errors, on a wide range of general topics, marking clearly the relationships between ideas. Can communicate spontaneously with good grammatical control without much sign of having to restrict what they want to say.
• Can give clear, systematically developed descriptions and presentations, with appropriate highlighting of significant points and relevant supporting detail.
• Have a clear, natural, pronunciation and intonation without or with a minimum of L1 interference.
An excellent command of English is absolutely vital for the successful completion of your English studies. It is hardly surprising then that a considerable portion of the first and second- year programs is dedicated to language acquisition. Both 1st year Oral Communication Skills and 2nd year Oral Communication Skills are characterized by classes, assignments, and activities that encourage students to actively engage in improving their language and communication skills.
The 1st year Oral Communication Skills course is aimed at developing both your productive and receptive language skills. Language acquisition is a process in which the various skills complement and reinforce each other. Therefore, pronunciation, fluency, and listening comprehension are taught in all four quarters. However, the emphasis is on the receptive language skills in the first semester and on the productive language skills in the subsequent semester.
During the course, students practice speaking English and listening to English by means of role-plays, participating in debates as well as informal discussions, giving presentations, assessing their fellow students' presentations, exploring websites, reading and summarizing articles, doing listening exercises, etc. In addition, students build their vocabulary by studying an idioms book and by keeping a personal idiom file. In the OCS courses, the language and culture of the US are taken as a starting point and students are encouraged to explore every day American culture, mainly by means of short research assignments culminating in presentations.
Students practice their pronunciation individually with materials that enable them to listen to pronunciation exercises, record their own pronunciation, and compare it to that of a model speaker. Thus, the actual 'learning' takes place by means of self-study. The weekly tutorials are meant to determine whether the students have adequately learned those aspects of the pronunciation dealt with in the exercises and to help them improve.