INL0132 : English for Academic Purposes (40 Credits) 2016/17

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 20.0


This module is designed to help advanced level international students develop competence in and awareness of academic English and employability skills in order to successfully start an undergraduate degree programme in the UK. It is specifically designed for students starting the module at an advanced English language level(approximately IELTS 7, CEFR C2). This enhanced 40 credit module is designed to provide students with extensive practice and development time. The module’s specific aims are:
•       To develop skills and knowledge in academic writing to meet the expectations of the undergraduate academic community at UK HEIs
•       To develop strategies for reading academic texts in English in order to exploit key text content for further study purposes including written work, seminar discussion and oral seminar presentation
•       To introduce note-taking skills and to extend this into summarising of key ideas from written and oral texts
•       To develop an awareness of how secondary sources are to be integrated into student writing so that recognition and respect of source origins are demonstrated and plagiarism is avoided
•       To raise awareness of academic lecture structure and the strategies required in order to follow and understand lecture content, lecturer behaviour, and lecturer discourse choices
•       To develop spoken English skills for social and academic spoken interactional contexts, such as seminar discussions, oral presentations, 1-1 tutorials, group work discussions, and informal conversations.
•       To further extend knowledge and awareness of English grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation features so that academic and socio/cultural assimilation can easily occur
* To develop an enhanced skills set which can be mapped to the UK employability framework

Outline Of Syllabus

Develop grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation and style with regard to academic English.
Use a range of reading strategies to understand challenging academic texts.
Summarise, paraphrase and synthesise texts.
Comprehend the structure and function of academic writing.
Raise student awareness of the variety of writing genre appropriate to their subject pathway: Business and Humanities: descriptive, evaluative, discursive and argumentative text patterns.
Write English clearly and appropriately using an adequate range of sentence structures and vocabulary.
Plan, write and review academic assignments.
Use citation and referencing appropriately.
Understand lectures as a teaching method.
Take effective notes (in lectures and from written sources).
Summarise oral discussions and reading texts.
Use and understand spoken English in academic and social contexts
Prepare and deliver oral presentations on academic topics.
Participate successfully in seminars and discussions about academic topics.
Complete a portfolio to demonstrate development of employability skills

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture24:008:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical202:0040:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching260:00120:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study2113:00226:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision23:006:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Collaborative and interactive learning are central to the teaching and learning methodology adopted in this module. This is best developed through small group learning and pair work. Collaborative learning facilitates the development of reading strategies such as guessing unknown vocabulary from context and helps to improve students' understanding of the writing process as well as their planning, revising, editing and proof-reading skills. These skills are best developed through peer and tutor feedback on drafts. Activities which exploit the strong link between reading and writing are also important. These activities usually involve the combination of teaching and learning methods outlined above. Note-taking and summary writing tasks are examples of these activities, as is text analysis, which is used to help students understand the organisational and stylistic features of academic writing as well as the conventions governing the use of sources. Furthermore, the development of reading and writing skills is not possible without self-study. Extensive reading is necessary to improve reading skills and general language proficiency and to increase knowledge and understanding of textual and organisational features of written texts. Regular writing practice in the form of homework tasks ensures that the skills learnt are consolidated. Students are exposed to audio and video extracts of a wide variety of discourse types from a range of sources e.g. lectures, news reports, everyday conversations, discussions etc. The use of small group work and pair work maximises speaking time in class and ensures personalised feedback on specific listening and speaking problems. Students are required to prepare for and actively participate in seminar simulations, tutorial discussions and open debates on a variety of academic and social topics. Workshop sessions and peer feedback classes are well suited to developing oral presentation skills. Finally, all of these skills are applied and transferred to the portfolio task which encourages reflective learning and transferable skills for employment.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination902A15Unseen Writing exam
Written Examination752A15Unseen Reading Exam
Aural Examination602A15Unseen Listening Exam
Oral Presentation102M106-8 minutes presentation followed by Q & A
Oral Presentation252A15Seminar Group Speaking Assessment
Exam Pairings
Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
INU0101English for Academic Purposes (20 credits)2N/A
INU0103English for Academic Purposes - Foundation Sciences (40 Credits Version)2N/A
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise1M10Reading academic text and completing short answer questions, taking notes and writing summary
Essay2M101200 Word Essay
Portfolio1M5Portfolio task 1 including reflection
Portfolio1A5Portfolio task 2 with reflection
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Oral Examination1AUnseen Speaking Exam
Aural Examination1AUnseen Listening Exam
Written Examination1AUnseen Writing Exam
Written Examination1AUnseen Reading Exam
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Semester 1 assessment is formative and results are used by the tutors and students to measure student ability and progress on the module. This will provide the opportunity to identify areas where the students need to focus on improving before taking the summative assessments in semester 2, which will determine their success on the overall programme and their university place. The aim of the assessment is to test the four skills taught and to provide constructive feedback to ensure the students transition into an academic environment more successfully.

Assessing all four language skills by final test and coursework makes it possible to test the full range of skills taught. Skills that are not easily assessed by means of a timed test (e.g. citation skills) are tested through the written coursework. The reading test is designed to assess the full range of skills taught. The nature of the listening test demonstrates the students’ ability to process, understand and infer information from an extract of prepared spoken discourse. The speaking test demonstrates the students’ ability to interact with others in the context of a given topic and situation. There is a separate oral presentation to formally assess the key skills of researching, synthesising, and presenting information. Overall, the combination of summative coursework and exams will provide a balanced assessment of students’ language competence (including the ability to perform under timed conditions).

The focus is on assessing students’ language competence and preparedness for undergraduate study leading to employability.

Students are assessed in the four language skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking. The assessments are designed to measure both general language/communication skills and study skills for academic work in a UK higher education environment. The rationale for this approach is given below:

1       This approach to assessment is consistent with the programme's overall aim of developing the language, communication and study skills of international students to a level that will enable them to undertake a degree programme at Newcastle or other UK universities.

2       The assessments address the specific learning outcomes outlined in the Programme Specification.

3       The overall mark (the average of the marks for the four individual skills) is directly linked to a specific band in the statements of competence provided by the INTO Newcastle University Centre. This enables students, receiving schools and sponsors to interpret the grades easily and accurately.

4       The marks for the individual skills enable course leaders and tutors to make appropriate recommendations for further tuition or self-study in specific language skill areas. It is possible, for example, that a student who has satisfactorily completed the INTO International Foundation Programme may require In-Sessional support in one particular skill (e.g. writing).

5       This approach to assessment is consistent with that of other Newcastle University London Centre programmes (e.g. Pre-Sessional, In-Sessional, English for Undergraduate Study and English for Postgraduate study), which also use skills-based assessment and a common English Language Proficiency Scale when awarding marks. This ensures a smooth transition from one course to another and gives a clear indication of progress over time. It also ensures that reporting mechanisms are standardised across programmes and that the information contained in entry standard and progress reports is easily interpreted by academic schools and sponsors.

Reading Lists