My (and my colleagues) ongoing EMI course aiming at develop master students 21st century competencies (e.g. collaboration, creativity and learning). Our course is blended learning course, which consist of face-to-face lecturers, seminars, small group work, and independent study. In this year our virtual learning environment is Peda.net.
Primarily our students working together (both online and face-to-face) in small groups of 3-4 members in order to write theoretical and practical recommendation paper (to an external group of practitioners who are developing higher education to better meet the requirements of the working life) on a certain topic. They are randomly divided into the groups of 3-4 members and collaborated for writing task via web 2.0 technology i.e in shared Google Docs document. We have instructed students to follow a four phase script procedure, in which collaborative writing task is divided into the different phases in order to support students’ collaboration.
The structure of the our four-phase collaborative writing process (script):
Phase 1: Current problem > Regarding collaborative learning in university studies
Phase 2: State of the art > Look for theoretical ideas and/or empirical evidence that might be applied to the problem at hand.
Phase 3: Advantages > Evaluate what aspects of the theoretical ideas and/or empirical evidence can be well applied and which ones not.
Phase 4: Disadvantages > Theoretical aspects; Focus on critical points of view and/or empirical evidence.
At the beginning of the task each small group divides themselves into student 1, student 2, student 3, and student 4. Then each student starts writing draft in a way that student 1 starts in phase 1, student 2 in phase 2 etc. Working is based on rotation system, so after one week students change their “roles” in a way that student 1 change into phase 2, student 2 into phase 3 etc. Each small of their specific topic by utilising their main source and at least one additional source chosen by themselves (can be the source provided by the teachers). Students write their task in joint Google document following the scripted phases.
In summary, my main EMI teaching methods in current course are: small group work, scripted collaboration, technology-enhanced teaching and learning. In language perspective the course is demanding , because it’s combine both English and academic language. Also in students’ perspective the course is challenging, because students from different cultural backgrounds have to work, write and collaborate together for written document that need to follow academic language (written). Also our teaching method is demanding because it challenges students to collaboration and critical thinking. During our course it’s important to keep spoken English as simple as possible and repeat main points (e.g. the instructions for scripted working).