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Betriebspraktika in europäischen Unternehmen 2015
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

In 2015, 16 participants of the biennial and triennial vocational course of State-Certified Commercial Assistants for Foreign Languages, 4 participants of the so called ‘dual educational courses’ of Personnel Service Providers, Insurers, Retailers, and 7 participants of the course of Foreign Language Correspondence Clerks/A-levels will take part in the internship programme. The Commercial Assistants who do their internship at the beginning of their last year of vocational studies then will have substantial demand of both, foreign languages in the field of commercial correspondence and terminology in foreign trade. They will have already obtained knowledge concerning such matters of commercial correspondence as enquiry, offer, order, delay in payment and notice of defects. Further, they will have learned how to handle different types of forms in the field of foreign trade and will have acquired detailed knowledge in the subjects of business administration, national economy and infonomics. In the latter they will have learned how to use computer programmes like Excel, Word and Powerpoint and will be well trained in word processing. Due to all these skills acquired, they are qualified for working in international importing and exporting enterprises, shipping companies, international industrial concerns and organisations as well as in hotels and/or language schools. At a time when their state of knowledge enables the trainees to deal with responsible tasks in a company or an institution, the internships offer the opportunity to link their theoretical knowledge with practical training. What concerns us primarily is that for teaching purposes didactically reduced case studies become verified in a real environment in order to enhance the students’ chances on the European labour market. As this is a full-time vocational school training, the trainees have got few opportunities to work in side jobs to earn their own living. Thus, doing an internship in a foreign country does not only mean financial losses during the time of their stay but also considerable problems in raising the funds for a period abroad. Only if our trainees will be sponsored by the ERASMUS+ programme, we are able to realise our project. Moreover, this programme constitutes the frame of security, trustworthiness, approval and professional advice and support which is so important to our partners and beneficiaries. This year’s project of 8 to 11 weeks will be carried out in companies and institutions based in the UK, France, Spain, Ireland, Poland and Turkey. An internship of eleven weeks including the corresponding exam held and certified by a German-French board of examiners will be offered by the grammar schools Lycée St. Etienne and Lycée René-Cassin in Strasbourg. With that the students are given the opportunity to get their practical skills certified and, thus, obtain a more favourable starting position on the labour market. For already two years now, we have been applying the ECVET instruments in co-operation with these partners. In recurrently held workshops we regularly update and adjust the instruments to the corresponding needs. All details described above are mainly applicable to the Foreign Language Correspondence Clerks/A-levels, except the fact that these students are at the initial stage of their vocational training at the time of their internship. The trainees of the dual educational courses benefit from their three-week internship by testing their practical knowledge in other European countries. In 2015, for the first time the interns carried out the Erasmus+ interactive language test before and after doing the internship in order to measure a possible enhancement of their language skills. The results were convincing as each and all participants could improve their abilities by one level. The participants of the project will benefit considerably and sustainably, both, in their professional and private life from the improvement of their language skills, newly gained cultural insights and, last but not least, their personality development. 1 The students of the triennial course do a combined degree course of AVCE and State-certified Commercial Assistant for Foreign Languages. 2 Dual courses are a combination of theoretical vocational training at school and practical training in a company.
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