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Constructionist Experiential Learner-Enhanced Teaching in English for Academic Purposes

Dietmar Tatzl

This book offers a macrostrategy for teaching English as a foreign language to students in tertiary degree programmes. This teaching strategy has been developed from various methodological currents in higher education and language didactics. The volume provides inspiration, ideas and practical examples for ESP and EAP professionals anywhere in the world and hopes to motivate learners across disciplines. It takes subject-specific requirements into consideration and is a methodology handbook open to the diversity of EAP teaching contexts. It may serve as a textbook in applied linguistics, English studies and teacher education.
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9. Implementing Constructionist Experiential Learner-Enhanced Teaching

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Constructionist experiential learner-enhanced teaching is a teaching strategy promoting productive practice and language use for specific purposes. It draws on learners’ experiences and is rooted in subject-matter disciplines. For these reasons, it is well suited for English for academic purposes environments, where students need to develop their communicative competences and language proficiency to function as members of scientific and professional communities of practice (Wenger, 1998). For language instructors, the most accessible links to learners’ subject-matter disciplines are authentic specialist texts or materials and the learners themselves. Even though close collaboration with subject-matter experts is desirable for EAP in all disciplines, it is not always feasible because of various institutional constraints in local contexts. As a consequence, CELET is open to the inclusion of content-area specialists whenever possible, for instance as team-teachers, co-producers of instructional materials and assessment tools or expert advisers, yet it equally caters for the needs of English language lecturers who are excluded from cooperative endeavours with the disciplines.

9.1 Recommendations

As CELET is no prescriptive or narrow-angled method (cf. Mercer, 2013) but a teaching strategy allowing for flexible adaptation, selective use and continuous development, it may serve as an imaginative resource and generator of rewarding learning opportunities. It has the potential to complement and enrich diverse learning environments, as it may be combined with other instructional strategies. It is further open to the incorporation of manifold specialist resources and materials as well as various task types and assessment options. In this...

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