Why did we need this project
Current professional language education in VET generally focuses on language teaching ignoring professional content. So, this language education never moves learners up to a language level based on practice. Most of the learners having a command of grammar and structure in English can’t turn their knowledge into speaking and communication skills.To find out ways of achieving a more content-based professional English teaching, we have conducted a need analysis on different target groups: learners in initial VET, employees in continuing VET and educators in VET schools. The need analysis surveys have revealed that professional English education should be enriched with ocational content and innovative teaching approaches integrating digital tools. The project’s main long-term objective is to increase the employment rate of service and front-desk students after graduation. Even if learners have top-level qualities in terms of vocational competences, lacking the language skills necessary for a professional career decreases their employment potential. This project will bring a new dimension to professional language teaching being not effective for years. We believe that the e-learning portal and mobile application serving as open education resources will bring the uttermost benefit to the language learning environments in VET. Some conditions such as easy access to information, diversification of communication channels, extensive use of technology in the digital eraoffer learning opportunities for student. Most importantly free for use by learners.
One of the target groups of the project is service and front-desk learners in VET. The project will directly serve for strengthening their professional language skills. Another target group is service and front-desk employees in continuing VET. We have associated partners from hotel institutions which will bring added value to the project by letting us expand the impact on employees working actively in the sector. VET and language teaching staff is the third target group as they will have open access to professional language resources.
The most important reason for conducting the project at the European level is that professional language education in VET institutions in Europe faces the same problems. Despite the fact that the starting point of the project idea originates from our educational needs, the project’s objectives appeal to almost all VET organizations throughout Europe. This is what makes the project innovative as there isn’t any structured professional language practice like the one foreseen in the project. The correspondence with our project partners reveals that such a project proposal is an important necessity for other VET schools.
As our organization is a hotel management and hospitality school, we have a cooperation network with other hospitality schools in Europe. During the previous years, we had the chance to observe professional English practices at these schools, and we have come up with the idea that such a project can have the most effective results only if conducted with the cooperation of different hospitality schools around Europe. So, we can have a common study area to improve language content for professional English. While the partners from the hospitality schools will be responsible for shaping and preparing the language content of the project outputs, we will get technical support to create the digital infrastructure of the learning outcomes from another partner organization. We’ve also paid attention to this partner to be experienced in Erasmus+ VET innovation projects to bring the uttermost benefit to the project.