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Background to British Business
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Project background: English is part of the curriculum for business management assistants (1 lesson per week).at vocational schools. More and more trainees in the economy see themselves confronted with communication in English. With the rising globalization and internationalization we see the need to qualify our students for these challenges. This may work best in an authentic surrounding where you can experience and acquire new skills in a direct way. Above all, trainees who have not had the opportunity of being supported, i.e. especially not through European exchange programmes, should be enabled to profit from this project. Learning outcomes: The participants are expected to improve their general and business knowledge of English during the 3-week course at the European college of Business and Management (ECBM) in London. With the project-related work they shall be encouraged to work on their own, improve their presentation skills as well as develop team-spirit qualifications which are essential in a modern business world. Moreover we want the participants to gain valuable intercultural experience, build up a healthy self-confidence and develop self-worthiness not only for their professional career. Closely connected we see the project as a door-opener to a positive attitude against life-long learning and minimizing internal barriers when it comes to work abroad. Participants: Amount and Profile The participants are 21 trainees or business management assistants in industry concentrating on the commercial side of the business. They have served at least about half of their apprenticeship of two and a half respectively three years already. They have gained basic practical experience, a solid knowledge of English which mainly results from a secondary education, partly higher secondary or A-Levels. Their language skills are above average. Basic task-related vocabulary has been acquired at vocational school. There is also a basic knowledge of intercultural communication- partly achieved at vocational school. Activities / Implementation: The course at the ECBM includes lessons as well as group work on chosen projects (assisted by tutors). The students’ tasks also include research activities (field, internet and other) and a presentation which is part of the examination. This presentation has to be followed by a written executive summary. The cultural aspects include an overview on British and London politics, economy and society in lessons as well as excursions with the ECBM. At a personal level the participants will be enabled to experience another culture, life in another household and host family, a totally new surrounding in a world city thus learning to understand, respect and accept other people. Their language skills will profit immensely not only from the stay at the college but the contact to and within the host families. The teachers from vocational school who will accompany and monitor the project will take them on cultural tours, e. g. tours of the city, visit museums, concerts, theatre plays and typical markets, and a trip to Brighton as an example of British seaside resorts. Results / Long-term outcomes: On the long run this project will help improve the participants’ intercultural skills as well as encourage them to see work abroad as part of their business life and accept life-long learning as an essential part of a professional career.
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