გრძელიძე ირმა

ასოცირებული პროფესორი; უფროსი, ინგლისური ფილოლოგიის დეპარტამენტი; ხარისხის უზრუნველყოფის სამსახური, აკაკი წერეთლის სახელმწიფო უნივერსიტეტი, ქუთაისი, საქართველო

ზვიადაძე ნათია

ასოცირებული პროფესორი; უფროსი, ინგლისური ფილოლოგიის დეპარტამენტი; ენათა ცენტრი, აკაკი წერეთლის სახელმწიფო უნივერსიტეტი, ქუთაისი, საქართველო

გრიგალიშვილი თამარ

ინგლისური ენის პედაგოგი, ენათა ცენტრი, აკაკი წერეთლის სახელმწიფო უნივერსიტეტი, ქუთაისი, საქართველო


Developing Foreign Language Competence Among BA Students - Challenges and Perspective (case study, ATSU)

(გლობალური საკითხები და თანამედროვე გამოწვევები განათლებაში)


Introduction and aim: Since 2011 program accreditation was introduced within the higher education area of Georgia which correspondently meant learning outcome based curricula. Actually this caused several challenges within the institutions while designing intended learning outcomes. Among which one of the primary challenges was developing foreign language competence among BA students and creating the relevant environment for developing this competence. Two major challenges were revealed in the process. The first was designing the intended learning outcome connected with the foreign language competence, and another was developing the correspondent environment for providing this competence. Actually the universities started working on this direction and at Akaki Tsereteli State University the decision was made that the language center had to be opened in 2011 which was the first unit to meet the challenges and to provide the corresponding teaching for all academic programs within the university. Then at the same time the programs were reviewed from these perspectives and 15 ECTS credits were allocated within each program to do the step forward, for meeting the intended learning outcomes for foreign language competence. Though since 2011 lots of changes have taken place regarding this issue. The article deals with the issues of teaching foreign language and the correspondent transformations of existing syllabi in terms of literature, credit allocation, teaching methodology and the assessment systems.

Research methodology: Interviews with the students focus groups and desk review of the existing syllabus was used to study the situation. Like reviewing all the syllabi of foreign languages. Interviewing the students on their satisfaction of foreign language teaching within the curriculum; Interviewing the teaching staff and the focus groups which consisted of mainly deans and Head of Quality Assurance Services of the faculties took place. We discussed the perspectives and challenges of teaching foreign language learning for the perspective of internationalization of the programs, collaboration and into international higher education area.

Results and implications: Having done all the interviews and desk review and interviewing and consulting with the focus groups the following challenges were identified. The first thing is that the number of credits allocated within the university. (15 ECTS credit) actually the study revealed that the credits allocated for enhancing the students with the correspondent foreign language competence is not enough. The second challenge which was identified concerns some kind of teaching methodology as time by time it was more teacher oriented. The third challenge could be difficulty while grouping the students, like the students of different levels time by time still sit together which makes the progress very difficult to achieve. Then existing timetable which is very much fixed and there is no much flexibility for the students to move from group to group, which also causes some kind of problems and the last challenge could probably be, the students enrolled within the university from entrance examination, with very low competence of Foreign language.

Conclusion: Having identified awareness of students and student’s beliefs several steps were made forward in different directions. First of all some kind of discussions have been started with the coordinators of academic programs in terms of making the credits allocated a bit more. Otherwise, the desired results would not be achieved and internalization would have definitely suffered because of that. Several trainings were planned and conducted and approximately 94 teaching staff was trained gradually on teaching methodology and assessment system. Then some kind of plans are made there to make the timetable more flexible in a way it is more result oriented rather than timetable oriented.

Keywords: foreign language competence, Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, CEFRL, assessment, challenges