EFL Learners’ Perspectives upon Creating Contextual English for Specific Purposes

Ai-Hwa Chen


The purpose of this study is to examine students’ perspectives on taking the specific course entitled, Escort English, and reveal the effects of creating contextual English through the use of project-based learning techniques. The course was an elective two credit hours a semester and was offered two semesters consecutively in the Applied English Department at a technological university located in the center of Taiwan. It was the first semester while this study was being conducted. Thirty-two junior students participated in this course. In addition to attending the regular class meetings, students were asked to do a group project after school. Based on specific topics designated by the instructor, students needed to write a contextual dialogue and do role-play at a real or simulated location accompanied by a video making. After that, students shared their creative works and gave peer evaluation to one another in the class. In the findings, many students indicated that they had learned operations in the field of business and many useful vocabulary words and phrases relevant to the business which they had not learned from other courses taken previously. Most impressively, they claimed that they had learned the skills of making the videos by themselves. However, although all the students indicated that they had learned some English for specific purposes and became aware of this new knowledge which might be helpful for their future career because of conducting the extra group project, a number of the students did not take its subsequent course in the following semester. Student feedbacks complained that they spent too much time and efforts for the class. This implies that pursuing knowledge and English in specific fields is less important than engaging in easier coursework in students’ studies.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/elr.v1i2.8240


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