Research

January 28, 2019 at 4:30 am

Bikowski Gives Keynote in Vietnam on English as Medium of Instruction

Dr. Dawn Bikowski giving keynote address at International Conference on Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages in Hanoi, Vietnam

Dr. Dawn Bikowski giving keynote address at International Conference on Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages in Hanoi, Vietnam

Dr. Dawn Bikowski, Director the English Language Improvement Program’s Academic & Global Communication Program, gave the keynote address at the “International Conference on Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages” in Hanoi, Vietnam. Bikowski was invited by Vietnam National University: University of Languages and International Studies. In attendance were nearly 400 teachers from across Vietnam who deliver their university and K-12 courses in English.

“Having professors from many departments, particularly the STEM fields, teach their courses all in English is becoming increasingly common worldwide,” notes Bikowski. English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) courses are a rising trend not only in Vietnam but across Asia and many parts of the world. Educators are seeking strategies they can use as they teach in English to a group of students who all speak English as an additional language.

The rise in EMI stems from internationalization and globalization, with fluent English speakers being more readily hired, having more access to materials/resources, and being able to work in international businesses more easily.

Bikowski is also building an online faculty development course on this topic. To this end, she visited 15 universities across the country in order to gather information on their needs and strategies for success.

Photo shows small group seated around table.

Bikowski discusses EMI challenges and strategies with Vietnamese teachers.

“As you can imagine, there are lots of challenges in EMI courses. Many times classes are large and students aren’t used to taking an active role in their learning. Educators have to not only develop skills and confidence in speaking and lecturing in English, but often more importantly, in moving to more student-centered classrooms,” says Bikowski. “Vietnamese faculty are hard-working and dedicated, so they’re rising to the challenge. It’s exciting to work with them and share best practices and ideas for success.”

The project allowed for visits with OHIO alumni as well, such as Ohio University alum Dr. Ngan Nguyen (M.A. Linguistics, 2008, Ph.D. Education 2011), Vice Director of External Cooperation at Nha Trang University.

The project was supported by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

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