Researching English as a Medium of Instruction in University Lecturers' Teaching Methodology: A Proposal for In-Service Training

Researching English as a Medium of Instruction in University Lecturers' Teaching Methodology: A Proposal for In-Service Training

María del Carmen Méndez-García (University of Jaén, Spain) and Gloria Luque Agulló (University of Jaén, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2318-6.ch010


There has recently been an increase in English as a medium of instruction (EMI) in higher education (HE). The growth of EMI has led to a proliferation of descriptive research on teachers' linguistic competence, learners' and teachers' perceptions of and attitudes toward EMI, the methodology implemented in English as a medium of instruction, and the support and training provided to EMI teaching staff. However, to date, this rise in EMI has not been accompanied by a plethora of research on pedagogical and linguistic considerations. This chapter sheds light on some of these factors, with a focus on lecturers' teaching methodology. Focus group interviews and case study analyses were conducted involving EMI lecturers from a university in southern Spain. The data obtained in this study have been used to establish a pedagogical proposal for in-service EMI teacher training.
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Motivations For Introducing Emi

It is apparent that a growing number of universities are choosing to incorporate EMI, and this significant increase in EMI programs has been taking place since the start of the millennium. According to Doiz, Lasagabaster and Sierra (2012), around 800 EMI programs were offered in Europe alone as early as 2002. Today, EMI continues to expand even in regions with less tradition of learning through English, such as southern Europe, following the global trend of internalization within the Bologna process (Doiz, Lasagabaster & Sierra, 2012).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Scaffolding: A pedagogical technique comprising special transitional support provided by a teacher, classmate, parent, or even computer which enables learners to achieve a complex task, activity, or process they would not be able to do alone.

Process-Oriented Assessment: Dynamic assessment that focuses on the ongoing process rather than the final result or output. Some examples are projects, individual, and group presentations.

Focus Group Interview: A tool used in qualitative research where a group of people, rather than individuals in isolation, are selected and invited to discuss their perceptions or opinions in an interactive atmosphere. The discussion is guided by prompts or cues put forward by the interviewee.

Learner-Based Approaches: Approaches which depart from traditional teacher-based approaches. Learner-based approaches invite learners to participate and get actively involved across all stages of their learning process.

Input Tailoring: Simplifying input (in terms of content and/or language) provided by the teacher so it is adapted to students’ needs and level.

Translanguaging: Also known as code-switching, translanguaging accepts the use of both languages—the students’ L1 and the L2, English—in the classroom. Both languages are valued equally, and they may be used to maximize comprehension and scaffold content and language within the EMI context.

Negotiation of Meaning: The constant interaction among speakers which ensures that the message is successfully conveyed and understood. Strategies employed when negotiating meaning include asking for clarification, rephrasing, or paraphrasing.

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