The Anglo-American Institute of the Faculty of Arts of the University of Debrecen and the American Indiana University will launch a joint Hungarian-American virtual language learning program and linguistic research seminar in the spring. The program involves 37 first-year, undergraduate, teacher, and master students.
In the program, 15 teaching students from Indiana University (Bloomington) will teach Debrecen students for 8 weeks through Zoom as part of a course that is essential to becoming a graduate language teacher.
The aim of the language learning program is to develop oral communication skills in topics that will be useful in students’ later careers and work. In the framework of a linguistic research seminar, the oral skills required in scientific life can be developed in various situations, including scientific exchanges or conference presentations.
The Anglo-American Institute has previously, albeit not in a similar curriculum, collaborated in a similar way with Texas A&M University in the United States, with students in teacher training there speaking weekly to the Anglo-American Institute’s faculty and English profession students.
– At the Anglo-American Institute, our important goal is to train teachers and other professionals to speak English confidently and to a high standard. Such cooperation will help us in the event that we can achieve all this. In addition to improving language skills, our students can also gain multicultural experience and communicate with native speakers without having to travel to another country, especially in the special circumstances of the epidemic, said Balázs Venkovits, director of the institute to the news portal unideb.hu.
The coordinator of the current initiative is Éva Kardos at the University of Debrecen, who did research as a PhD student at Indiana University in Bloomington in 2010 and met Beatrix Burghardt, who runs the program in the United States. Thanks to their personal relationship, the international course was able to start within the framework of the cooperation between the two universities.
Both programs began on February 13 with a language proficiency interview. Groups of 6 Debrecen students will be taught by two to three Bloomington students per group. The virtual language learning program and linguistics research seminar will end with an oral exam on April 24th.