Basic Oral Communication

The Basic Oral Communication courses will develop students' ability to comprehend and respond to simplified spoken English and to produce basic spoken English in academic and social situations. At the basic level, students may only understand simplified English from sympathetic speakers who modify speech as necessary- speaking slower and more precisely and using high-frequency words and simplified structures. Students should be at ease discussing familiar topics.

With each unit, students are given relevant vocabulary, and pre-listening cues to build background knowledge.  Aural input is provided through video and audio clips that further develop the students’ knowledge of the unit’s theme. Speaking skills are developed through classroom interaction as well as short individual and group presentations.

Basic Language Structure & Vocabulary

The Basic Language Structure and Vocabulary courses will provide students with the building blocks of language: vocabulary and grammar.  Students will be exposed to new vocabulary by viewing and thoroughly exploring a theme. Students will view and examine grammatical structures, and practice their correct forms in isolated workbook activities. Student will participate in various communicative activities to acquire working knowledge of the words and grammatical structures.  At the basic level, students should be able to recognize high-frequency words.  Students should be able to recognize parts of speech, verb tenses, modals, count and non-count nouns, coordinating conjunctions, and quantity and degree words, relative clauses.

Basic Reading

While reading is often thought of as a passive language skill, these Basic Reading courses recognize that students must be engaged and active readers in order to succeed at the college level.  Students will learn and practice effective strategies, develop and reinforce vocabulary, and interact with the text through oral and written communicative activities in class and at home.

The Basic Reading courses provide a foundation in basic reading skills and vocabulary for high beginning students. The texts provide interesting stories and articles.    Students at the Basic Reading level will read short paragraphs with mainly simple sentences. Students will respond well to personally relatable topics. Comprehension may be limited to overtly presented facts and simply stated meanings.  Reading speed may be limited by unfamiliar words and constructs.

Basic Writing

Writing is an essential skill for success at the college level. Contrary to what many students initially believe, academic writing is not merely a written format of spoken English. Students are expected to adapt an academic tone, structure their thoughts in a accepted format; utilize common rhetorical devices; and use precise vocabulary. Furthermore, professors tend to judge written accuracy and style more strictly than spoken production.  Writing speed (or fluency) also becomes important as college assignments have fixed deadlines and essay tests are often timed.

At the Basic Writing Level, students first master solid sentence structure, and organization (creating a list, chronological transition words, etc.).  Students then move on to the process of writing and paragraph structure- topic sentences, supporting details, and concluding statements. 

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