Conversation through Hot Current Issues
FEKT-XPC-KATAcad. year: 2020/2021
- The conversation class opens opportunity to talk about social and scientific controversial issues occurring daily on TV and in newspapers, and makes students think more deeply about these matters.
- The aim is to bridge the gap between the artificial classroom conversation and the natural, real-life discussion, and encourage students to talk about things which really matter to them on a personal, political and moral level.
- Students are expected to give presentations providing basic information on the topic. They are intended to be used as springboards for the discussions.
Learning outcomes of the course unit
Active participation in classes along with passing a written exam will show that a student is able to:
- communicate with greater confidence when engaged in more sophisticated debates
- use wider vocabulary based on the topics discussed including slang, phrasal verbs and idioms (science and technology, religion, money, weapons, space exploration, telling lies, death penalty, addictions, art, immigration, racism)
- apply smoothly and carefully all common grammar rules during conversation (grammar tenses, relative clauses, time clauses, conditionals, passive voice, modal verbs)
- use proper stress and intonation
- give well-structured, attractive presentation
- negotiate, persuade, express and defend opinions
The student signed up for the class is expected to be able to:
- use general vocabulary from all common areas (family, home, food, jobs and career, health and sickness, travelling and transport, sports, hobbies)
- apply carefully grammar rules during conversation (grammar tenses, relative clauses, time clauses, conditionals, passive voice, modal verbs)
- speak clearly with certain error tolerance
- understand very well classes taught in English
Recommended optional programme components
Recommended or required reading
MacAndrew, Richard and Martínez, Ron: TABOOS AND ISSUES.
Haines, Simon: ADVANCED SKILLS (A resource book of advanced-level skills activities).
Gammidge, Mick: SPEAKING EXTRA (A resource book of multi-level skills activities).
Planned learning activities and teaching methods
Teaching methods depend on the type of course unit as specified in the article 7 of BUT Rules for Studies and Examinations.
Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes
written test (40 points), it contains vocabulary
presentation (60 points)
Language of instruction
TOPICS TO BE COVERED IN THE CONVERSATION CLASS:
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY – WHERE DO WE GO?
What are the main dangers of scientific advances? Will science end the world or save the world? What are the most important inventions / discoveries ever? Will machines rule the world?
THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS / RELIGION
What is (un)happiness? What makes us feel happy? Does it lie within us or outside us? Do you think some nations are happier than others?
What is our attitude to religion? Do we need God?
MONEY - THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL?
Can you imagine living in a world without money? Would there be no poverty? How would the world be different if all the money was shared out equally among all people? Is money really the root of all evil? Are rich people more attractive?
NOBODY NEEDS A GUN
Gun massacres in schools. Why do people keep guns? Why do men love guns that much? Would you ever use a gun?
CAR - A DANGEROUS WEAPON?
Do we make way for cars or cars make way for us? What countries produce the best cars? Do you think the car a person drives is an extension of his/her personality?
SPACE EXPLORATION - LIVING ON MARS FOREVER?
Is everything perfect in the Universe? Is it worth spending so much money on space research? Is colonizing space essential?
Are we honest? How honest are we? Are we strong enough to face the truth? How to tell the truth? When to hide it?
Are you in favour of death penalty? An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth? Is capital punishment deterrent to crime? How many innocent people have died from the death penalty?
NOT MY TYPE
Biting nails, thin legs, bad complexion - what do you avoid in a partner?
Alcohol, smoking, drugs, chocolate, shopping, football, sex - what are we hooked on?
What is art? Does art change the way we think or feel? How would the world be different without artists?
BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING
Do we really care for freedom? Do you think that a surveillance society is a safe society? Do our parents respect our privacy?
IMMIGRATION AND RACISM
Why are we racists? Will racism ever disappear from the world? What are the benefits of immigration?
- to involve students effectively and in a stress-free way in discussions so they could feel more confident when engaged in more sophisticated debates.
- to include and practise a wide range of speaking skills such as negotiating, persuading, expressing and defending opinions, giving presentations
- to work with stress and intonation
- to practise and extend constantly vocabulary including slang and idiomatic expressions
Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences
The content and forms of instruction in the evaluated course are specified by a regulation issued by the lecturer responsible for the course and updated for every academic year.
Classification of course in study plans
- Programme BPC-AUD Bachelor's
- Programme BPC-AMT Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-BTB Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-EKT Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-IBE Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-MET Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-SEE Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme BPC-TLI Bachelor's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional
- Programme MPC-BTB Master's, any year of study, winter semester, 3 credits, optional