English for Specific Purposes (ESP) has gained increased attention and stirred debate among university English professors in an EFL context for the past several decades. This study aims to investigate the effectiveness of collaborative teaching in a two year ESP-integrated EFL curriculum in a Taiwanese university and to report the opinions of graduating senior students, reflecting upon the English courses that they attended during the first two years of their university days. Two groups of students participated in this experiment: one of which took part in an ESP-integrated program during their freshman year and received general English instruction during their sophomore year, while the other group received the general English instruction in their first year and the ESP-integrated instruction in their second year. When these students became graduating seniors, their opinions were inquired on the appropriate weighting for the ESP instruction in the English course and their preference on the timing for receiving the ESP-integrated instruction. Both group’s English assessment scores were also collected twice a semester throughout the two year period in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the ESP-integrated English curriculum. The study reveals that both groups experienced significant improvement in overall English language skills by the end of the two-year period. However, the group that received ESP during the first year showed bigger improvement in listening, grammar, vocabulary, and reading. In addition, the majority of students believed that university English courses should have at least 50% of course content related to ESP, but there was no preference given as to the timing of ESP instruction in an EFL curriculum.
|Keywords:||Collaborative Teaching, English as a Foreign Language (EFL), English Proficiency Improvement, ESP-integrated Instruction, University English Course|
Associate Professor, Department of Applied Linguistics and Language Studies, Chung Yuan Christian University, Chung-li, Taiwan
Professor, Department of Supply Chain Management, Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, USA