Language case studies Theme 7 Languages and Employability
These case studies are taken from the publication European Multilingualism Experiences from the Lifelong Learning Programme – Key Activity 2 Languages. The best practice projects funded under LLP, KA2 – Languages focused on the study of inclusive multilingual societies in Europe, promoted intercultural dialogue with respect to migrants and raised awareness of minority European languages such as Romani. The outcomes of these projects show the significant contribution that EU funded projects can make in tackling the current economic and political challenges that the European Union is facing.
CHINESECOM - Competences in Elementary Chinese as a means to improve competitiveness of European Union companies
CHINESECOM improves competitiveness of European companies doing business with China by developing multimedia material for their acquisition of Chinese and enriching their cultural understanding. The project has performed preliminary research on existing material as well as a needs analysis. Based on the results, it has set up an online interactive language course (A1-B1) with a special focus on linguistic and social-economic aspects for students (all levels and educational sectors) and adults interested in learning Chinese, for training centres (schools, universities, language centres, etc.), and for companies that do business within or with China. The course includes 10 units with dialogues, exercises, vocabulary, explanations, evaluation and cultural content. There is also an introduction to the Chinese language and a glossary for consultation. The website contains information about China and its culture, general information about the project and its products, and an exchange forum.
Be My Guest: Russian for European Hospitality
Be My Guest explores the advantages that learning Russian can provide to Europeans, with a view to enhancing communication, intercultural interaction and understanding. The project has created a web-based tool for the autonomous learning of beginner-level Russian (level A1-A2), considered one of the languages of global communication. The course is aimed at those working in the tourism and hospitality sector, Europeans travelling to Russian speaking countries for tourism or business, and anyone else wishing to learn Russian. The course offers the basics of spoken Russian and deals with typical tourism and travel situations, as well as providing tutoring support on request and chat facilities in Russian. It consists of Learning Units, a Grammar Reference, a Glossary, and a Test Yourself section. Each unit is composed of several sections: 'How to say it in Russian?', which introduces language patterns, main vocabulary and grammar; 'Listening and Reading', which consolidates the introduced material; 'Listening and Speaking', which simulates communicative situations through collaborative dialogues; and interactive exercises.
PELLIC - Practice Enterprise for Language Learning & Intercultural Communication
PELLIC is an English language project that focuses on intercultural communication and learning English as a lingua franca in business. It provides a Virtual language Learning Environment (VLE) in a Practice Enterprise (PE) context for users to develop their business language skills, set up and run virtual companies, and interact and trade with other practice enterprise companies in different countries. The VLE is an easily accessible open source virtual learning environment for tertiary level education, advanced vocational training and continuing education. The VLE provides participants with an authentic business environment to use while learning English, practising business skills, and developing intercultural communication skills in a truly international context within the scope of Practice Enterprise. PELLIC also provides support to teachers wishing to use the PELLIC online course and its methodology in their countries. It has developed teacher support material, an online guidebook, and a Teacher's Guide.
CEFcult - Online CEF-based assessment of oral proficiency for intercultural professional communication
The CEFcult project addresses the need in European enterprise for increased foreign language proficiency for intercultural professional communication. The project has created a web-based assessment environment using Web 2.0 to train and assess language skills and oral proficiency in intercultural professional surroundings in a self-directed, socially embedded way. The CEFcult online environment brings together the worlds of higher education and enterprise for the assessment of oral proficiency in an intercultural professional context. The online learning tool is geared towards employees, those about to (re-)enter the workplace, language teachers, and in-company trainers.
IDIAL4P - IDIAL for Professionals – regionalized – intercultural – qualifying – professional
As a follow-up of the 2007 project IDIAL, IDIAL4P improves German language competency in central and eastern Europe on the one hand, and knowledge of central and eastern European languages (Bulgarian, Polish, Slovenian, Hungarian and Russian) in Germany on the other. This time, the project focusses on vocational learners and has developed online learning tools for job-relevant and subject-specific communication skills in Business Communication, IT, Tourism, Hazardous Materials Transportation, Politics, and Press. Since intercultural exchange and understanding are principal to professional communication, the modules combine language training and intercultural skills, with an emphasis on comparing the source and target language. The project has also created manuals to develop similar modules following the IDIAL4P methodology, available on the website.
EuroCatering - European Catering & Hospitality Language Training Course
EuroCatering provides language teaching and training courses for the professional hospitality sectors of kitchen, restaurant service and reception/accommodation. The language training website, www.eurocatering.org, is the one-stop language shop for the international hospitality sector and is freely accessible in 12 languages. The target users are teachers, trainees and workers in full-time, part-time formal education and non-formal lifelong learning acquiring languages at levels A1-A2 on the Common European Framework. The website covers 4 thematic areas: the Cloche representing Kitchen & Restaurant; the Bell representing Reception & Accommodation; and the Tray providing supplementary resources and the Certificate. The courses contain cultural input for the workplace, real life situations, original pictures, exercises, dialogues and assessments in each sector using visual, aural and written format.
LILAMA – Linguistic POLICY for the Labour Market
The LILAMA network is a mutual learning platform for the exchange and dissemination of guidelines, best practices and policy recommendations to design and implement linguistic policies oriented to labour market needs. The network is open to organisations involved in promoting and developing foreign language training services and related linguistic policies linked to employability and the linguistic needs of businesses. The network has carried out three main activities: the Observatory of best practices in labour market-oriented linguistic policies (60 best practices from 16 countries worldwide); research on the Common European Framework (CEFR) as a tool for language policymaking and training; and language policy recommendations taking into consideration employability and labour market needs. The final beneficiaries of such policies are adult language learners who will benefit from language training services to enhance their employability.