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Our approach to language and communication training can be classified as a learner-centered one, which may need some clarification. Not only is a relaxed learning environment created, because a positive atmosphere aids the process of learning, but we have also found that clients prefer open communication. As a result. clear, measurable and time-bound objectives are formulated -congruent with Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) descriptors- to both challenge our clients and to increase their autonomy. More specifically, special attention is paid to teaching strategies to increase autonomy, i.e. these strategies equip clients to carry on -their learning process- after the course has been completed.
We offer our clients a partnership. Please contact us for more information.
In sum, prior to any course, the level of each individual is accurately measured or assessed, and in our courses:
- learning objectives are formulated in line with CEFR’s can-do statements,
- a relaxed learning environment is created,
- open communication is established, and evaluation takes place continuously,
- strategies are taught to our clients,
- lessons learned are evaluated at the end of the process.
More about our ‘why’
At LSA Lingua, it is our mission to train clients in using English professionally, i.e. fluently, accurately and appropriately. In other words, our mission involves ensuring that clients can communicate effectively in English. We deliver on that commitment by facilitating good quality language & communication training and by staying up to date with field related developments. So, newly obtained insights always trickle down to existing courses and are incorporated in newly developed courses. We also establish clear and measurable course objectives with the client, because that allows us to monitor and measure our client’s progress throughout the learning process. This approach allows us to share responsibility for our client’s process. Consequently, a partnership is what we offer.
Communicating in an internationally-oriented occupational context
As we all know, English is the lingua franca (common language) of many occupational contexts nowadays. At work, we must demonstrate our competencies to reach our objectives and communicate well. In terms of communication, the way in which we communicate (i.e. our style) affects our relationships. Some things we appreciate about the way in which our co-workers communicate and some thing we do not. Certain unspoken rules are at play in such a context about how to make requests to co-workers or managers. In a cross-cultural environment where many may have different mother tongues, communicating well with others can be quite a challenge. Especially navigating those differences can be quite challenging. What professionals should at least be able to do to start communicating well in English is to make sure t hat they express themselves fluently and have a moderate to wide range of vocabulary at their disposal when communicating in English.
What determines success in a global marketplace
What most may not realize is that there is more to language use than establishing fluency or improving knowledge of grammar rules. What determines success involves an awareness of subtleties of language use. For example, how prosody (intonation, stress and timing) determines the meaning of utterances in its context. For example, when falling intonation is used, this might come across as being sarcastic. Another example is the ability to use grammar strategically and to understand implicitness of communication and, therefore, recognizing politeness strategies. All in all, having well-developed communicative skills is vital in any occupational context in which English is frequently used. For this reason, LSA Lingua aims to support these learners of English in reaching a higher proficiency in English.
Advanced users of English and English language training
While some think or are even convinced that obtaining a C1 level of English is sufficient to work well with others, this might only hold for non-native interactions, where others have a different mother tongue as well and where English is used as a lingua franca. Some even think that there is nothing to be learned after having obtained a C1 level of CEFR, but this is inaccurate. Especially when professionals are relatively fluent and accurate in their language production, the ability to establish and maintain good relationships with salient native speaker stakeholders becomes even more important, which might seem surprising. Naturally, basic communicative goals are met by fluent professionals with neutral accents due to their advanced proficiency, which may result in them being perceived as non-foreign.
However, it is very likely that they are still perceived as outsiders in native speaker contexts rather than ‘in-group members’, which may determine whether you get promoted or not. The inability of non-native speakers to play by the rules of the game of non-native speakers may create a gap between them and their native speaker peers, who may find it difficult to understand why the other is not adhering to ‘so called’ normal rules of interaction. Having fewer strategies to use and not fully comprehending the rules of the game may cause these non-native speakers of English to have a strategic disadvantage at work, which is unfavourable in any business context. To close this gap, LSA Lingua aims to support these advanced learners of English in reaching a native-like proficiency. Acquiring ways to express communicative nuances will probably offer you ways to reach your professional objectives in the long run. Taking a Cambrigde Proficiency course would be a good choice in this regard.
A cross- and/or an intercultural occupational context
It was mentioned that well-developed soft skills are vital in any occupational context in which communication takes place with native speakers. However, as not all interactions on the work floor take place with native speakers, professionals need to become aware of the fact that the rules of the game may differ when non-native speakers of English communicate with each other. To be able to gain insight in these rules, it is essential start with gaining insight into how both our native tongue affects our language use. More specifically, it is necessary to know how your norms & values may trickle down to it.
Moreover, professionals may need to become aware of what they consider ‘normal’ professional behaviour or deviant from it; that is to be able to make a choice as to either adapt to their interlocutor or to refrain from it. So, taking both communicative style and culture into account is vital when learning how to communicate ‘neutrally’ or more effectively. Consequently, LSA Lingua aims to support professionals who work in multi-lingual of multinational environments in reaching occupational objectives by developing the necessary soft skills.
Bringing it all together
The bottom-line is that you would want to be able to convey your message in a way that matches your intent, whether you’re communicating with native or non-native speakers of English, daily to occasionally. That is to ensure that your interactive moves resonate with your interlocutor, especially in a cross-cultural and professional context. At LSA Lingua, we are aware of the importance and impact of having these well-developed communicative skills, which is why being able to help others achieve their occupational goals while using English is what drives us every day.se