Writing Pre-Test (Scripts and example answer for Part 1 - Integrated Academic Writing Task)

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Writing Pre-Test (Scripts and example answer for Part 1 - Integrated Academic Writing Task) Empty Writing Pre-Test (Scripts and example answer for Part 1 - Integrated Academic Writing Task)

Post  Jason Renshaw on Sat Mar 08 2008, 20:38

Part 1 – Integrated Academic Writing Task

A. Take 5 minutes to read the following passage. Take notes about it using the chart that follows.

In the past decade in Korea, there has been a concerted effort to bring more native speakers into the public school system. These native English speakers act as “assistant teachers” with their Korean English teacher counterparts. Already, the benefits of this arrangement are starting to be felt in Korean public school settings.

For a start, the presence of a native English speaker in the classroom provides valuable opportunities for students to listen to real English usage. A native speaker can use the language naturally, and students will be exposed to this in a natural way. Students also have a chance to interact in English with a native speaker and improve their communication skills.

Secondly, this arrangement provides unique opportunities for the local Korean English teachers. By working in the classroom with a native speaker, the Korean teacher has more incentive to practice and use real English speaking skills. There is also the opportunity to interact with the native speaker, develop friendships and gain a much deeper knowledge of the cultures associated with the English language.

Last but not least, by providing native English speakers to public schools, there is no need for parents to be concerned about sending their children to private academies or spending large sums of money on private tutoring. The main impetus for enrolling their children in expensive private foreign language academies has been in order to gain access to a native speaker of the language. If there are native speaker teachers available at the local public school, there is no need to go to this considerable extra expense, and the result is fairer access to quality English education for all students – not just those from wealthy families.

All in all, through opportunities for exposure to natural English usage from native speakers, development of Korean teachers’ spoken skills and cultural awareness, and alleviating demand for private language instruction, the inclusion of many native English speakers in the public school system is a real advantage for all concerned.

B. Now listen to an educator talking about the same topic. You will hear the lecture two times only. Take as many notes as you can while you listen.

C. Now write an academic report that explains how the information in the listening passage casts doubt on (or disagrees with) the claims made in the reading passage.

Writing Time Limit = 20 minutes

Example/model answer:

The reading passage presents the topic of native speaker English assistant teachers in public schools, and how this is bringing benefits to Korean students. The speaker, while acknowledging that there are some benefits, casts doubt on the conclusions reached in the reading passage.

First of all, the reading passage claims that the presence of native English speaker teaching assistants means Korean students in public schools now get more chances to listen to real English. It also states that the students can now interact with native speakers and improve their communication skills. The speaker points out, however, that the application of listening skills is not actually all that different from what was being achieved with a cassette or audio CD. He also stresses that the large class sizes means that there aren’t really many opportunities for 1-1 interaction between teacher and students. This could lead to disappointment from the learners.

Next, the reading passage asserts that native English speakers can help to improve the speaking skills of Korean English teachers, as well as provide chances for friendship and increased knowledge about culture. Contrary to this, the speaker claims that Korean teachers already feel stressed about speaking English in class and will feel even more stressed if there is a native speaker there watching and listening to them. He goes on to point out that it will be hard for genuine friendships to develop because the Korean teacher has to “mind” his or her foreign colleague, without extra pay, on top of many other responsibilities. This may become burdensome for the Korean English teacher.

Finally, the reading states that having native English speakers in the public schools will stop students from attending private language academies, causing less expense to Korean families and limiting the advantage of wealth. The speaker, on the other hand, sees this as a naïve statement to make. He explains how Korean parents want private tuition based on the smaller class size as well as access to native speakers. He also points out that Korean parents are competitive and will always want their children to get ahead of other children. Based on this, he believes enrollment at private academies will always stay high no matter what improvements are made at the public school level.

Jason Renshaw
Kyungpook National University, Teachers' College, Department of English Education
Daegu City, Republic of Korea 702-701

Managing Director: www.onlinEnglish.Net
Author: http://www.boostskillsseries.com
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Jason Renshaw
Jason Renshaw

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