Levels, Course Content and Program Objectives

DEFINITIONS OF LEVELS

 

Should the newly enrolled undergraduate students fail to pass the English Proficiency Exam (İYS) at the beginning of the academic year, they are grouped in divisions composed according to the results of this test. Based on their performance in the English Proficiency Exam (İYS), students in the Department of Basic English Preparatory Program attend classes in one of the four divisions below:

 

  • B1+ LEVEL: B1+ level students are considered as upper-intermediate level students. They start the program at an intermediate level and complete it at a level of upper-intermediate. The structure of teaching for these students is skill-based, which means students receive instruction from at least 3 or 4 different instructors for Main Course, Reading, Listening-Speaking and Writing courses. In fact, the majority of the students are exposed to a one-term program since most of the B1+ level students complete the level successfully and pass the YTU English Proficiency Exam (EPE/İYS) in January. The students who fail are placed into B2 classes in the spring term in order to have the expected proficiency level before they go to their faculties.

 

  • B1 LEVEL: B1 level students are considered as intermediate level students. They start the program at a pre- intermediate level and complete it at an upper-intermediate level. As with B1+ students, B1 students also follow a skill-based instruction.

 

  • A2 LEVEL: A2 level students are considered as pre-intermediate level students. They start the program at an elementary level and complete it at a level slightly below upper-intermediate. Compared to B1 level educational materials, the level of the course materials followed is different. A2 level students receive an integrated-skills approach in the Fall term when they first start the Department of Basic English Preparatory Program where they receive instruction from 2 or 3 instructors and go on to study at B1 level in the Spring term.

 

  • A1 LEVEL: A1 level students are considered as elementary level students. They start the program at a zero or false beginner level and complete it at a level slightly below upper-intermediate. They start the program from a beginner level, and need to cover more to catch up with the upper levels. They go on to study at B1 level after having passed through A2 level course throughout the fall term.

 

The B1+ and B1 level students who meet the English proficiency requirement either by getting a score from the exams specified in the General Information section or by passing the English Proficiency Exam (İYS) before may start of the spring term are entitled to start their faculties as irregular students.

 

COURSE CONTENT DESCRIPTORS OF LEVELS

 

B1+ LEVEL: This is an upper-intermediate level that aims to prepare students for further English-medium academic needs in their faculties by satisfying the conditions specified under DBE Syllabus objectives. The students placed into this level are assumed to be at an intermediate level to be taken up to an upper-intermediate level through the covering of level-specific course books and materials as well as providing means for establishing language production in the form of presentations on semi-academic  topics.

 

The courses given at this level provide students with the knowledge, experience, skills, and confidence to sufficiently follow the courses within their faculties through level appropriate grammar structures; improvement of their academic reading skills by comprehending and responding to a variety of level appropriate academic/non-academic texts through reading and research; develop listening skills on objective-defined outcomes from level appropriate media (audio/video/interpersonal) and take notes on relevant information for later use; cultivate their academic writing skills by producing target genres of coherent paragraphs and essays as stand-alone writings; use level appropriate academic vocabulary; apply effective oral communication in non-academic/academic/technical contexts by applying research and knowledge to proposed issues and to gain autonomy in language learning through writing portfolios.

B1 LEVEL: This is an intermediate level that aims to prepare students for their further English-medium academic needs in their faculties. The students placed into this level are assumed to be at a pre-intermediate level to be taken up to an upper-intermediate level through covering intermediate and upper-intermediate level course books and materials. As their language level is a little lower when compared to B1+ level students, they have more hours of instruction.

 

The courses given at this level help students develop their use of English through level-appropriate grammar structures; improve their academic reading skills by comprehending and responding to a variety of level-appropriate academic/non-academic texts; develop listening skills to take notes from level-appropriate academic lectures; develop organizational skills, cultivate their academic writing skills by producing target genres of coherent paragraphs and essays; use level-appropriate academic vocabulary; apply effective oral communication in academic/non-academic contexts and gain autonomy in language learning through writing portfolios.

 

A2 LEVEL: This is a pre-intermediate level that aims at preparing students for their further English- medium academic needs in their faculties. The students placed into this level are assumed to be at an elementary level to be taken up to a slightly upper-intermediate level through covering pre-intermediate, intermediate books and upper-intermediate materials.

 

 As they are regarded as one of the lower levels, they have more hours of instruction when compared to upper levels. The courses given at this level help students develop their use of English through level-appropriate grammar structures; improve their academic reading skills by comprehending and responding to a variety of level-appropriate non-academic texts; develop listening skills to record keywords from and answer questions while listening to level-appropriate non-academic lectures; cultivate their academic writing skills by producing accurate and effective sentences, target genres of coherent paragraphs; use level appropriate academic vocabulary; apply proper oral communication in on-academic contexts and gain autonomy in language learning through writing portfolios.

 

A1 LEVEL: This is an elementary level that aims to prepare students for their further English-medium academic needs in their faculties. The students placed into this level are assumed to be at a zero/false beginner level to be taken up to an intermediate/upper-intermediate level, depending on their self-study practices as well, through covering elementary, pre-intermediate course books, intermediate and upper-intermediate materials. As they start the program from the beginning and need to cover more to catch up with the upper levels, they have as much hours of instruction as A2 level.

 

The courses given at this level help students develop their use of English through level-appropriate grammar structures; improve their academic reading skills by comprehending and responding to a variety of level appropriate non-academic texts; develop listening skills to record keywords from and answer questions while listening to level-appropriate non-academic lectures; cultivate their academic writing skills by producing accurate and effective sentences, target genres of coherent paragraphs; use level-appropriate academic vocabulary; apply proper oral communication in non-academic contexts and gain autonomy in language learning through writing portfolios.

 

PROGRAM OBJECTIVES

The educational outcomes of the Department of Basic English Compulsory Preparatory Course are summarized in the table below.

 

USE OF ENGLISH

By the end of the program, students will be able to

  • demonstrate an understanding of the meaning of statements by identifying target upper-intermediate level grammar structures*,
  • identify target upper-intermediate level grammar structures effectively to understand a variety of reading texts,
  • use target upper-intermediate grammar structures accurately to write opinion and cause-effect essays,
  • recognize target upper-intermediate level grammar structures effectively to follow an academic lecture,
  • apply target upper-intermediate linguistic structures in speaking with a degree of accuracy that does not hinder communication

READING

By the end of the program, the students will be able to

  • skim a text to obtain the gist of the text**,
  • scan a text to locate specific information,
  • differentiate mentioned/not mentioned information in a text,
  • identify stated and/or implied main ideas in a text,
  • identify significant details in a text,
  • decide what certain pronouns/determiners/etc. refer to in a text,
  • make inferences regarding the tone/attitude and purpose of the author of a text,
  • recognize text cohesion at sentence level by using contextual clues to identify the relationship between concepts and ideas
  • guess the words in a text they do not know from context.

A “text” refers to any text ranging from an intermediate to upper- intermediate level of up to 800 words.

WRITING

 

By the end of the program students will able to

  • write a cause essay*** optionally making use of the ideas/prompts provided,
  • write an effect essay optionally making use of the ideas/prompts provided,
  • write a coherent and unified essay,
  • use cause/effect language structures accurately and effectively,
  • use a wide range of topic-related vocabulary to write an essay,
  • use correct punctuation, capitalization, and spelling in an essay,
  • use a variety of grammar structures accurately in an essay.

An “essay” is an upper-intermediate level writing piece on an academic topic of 300-350 words and at least four paragraphs in length.

LISTENING

 

By the end of the program, students will be able to

  • recognize the type of an academic lecture****
  • get the gist/main idea of a lecture,
  • identify key words in a lecture,
  • infer who the speakers are, what the situation is and the speakers’ attitude as well as purpose
  • recognize the sequential information in a lecture,
  • identify significant details in a lecture,
  • differentiate mentioned/not mentioned information in a lecture,
  • differentiate true/false information in a lecture,
  • use some strategies and techniques for effective note taking while listening to a lecture,
  • develop their own strategies and techniques for effective note taking,
  • complete an outline of a lecture using their notes.

An “academic lecture” ranges from intermediate to upper-intermediate level comprising of up to 800 words.

SPEAKING

 

By the end of the program, students will be able to

  • convey messages orally by producing intelligible English sounds, stress and intonation features
  • convey messages/information in individual turns (monologues, structured presentations) of up to 8 minutes by using a range of level words, phrases and grammatical structures*****
  • express themselves with acceptable fluency on a wide range of conversational topics,
  • express themselves with acceptable accuracy by using the target upper-intermediate grammar structures,
  • convey their ideas clearly and coherently,
  • participate in discussions efficiently.