English Language Course

Eden Language Academy offers English language courses on both basic and intermediate levels.

The English Language

English is a West Germanic language that was first spoken in early medieval England and is now a global lingua franca.  It is spoken as a first language by the majority of populations in several sovereign states including the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and a number of Caribbean nations. Moreover, it is an official language of almost 60 sovereign states. English is the third most common native language in the world, after Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.  It is widely learned as a second language and is an official language of the European Union, many Commonwealth Countries and the United Nations, as well as in many world organizations.

English rose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and what is now southeast Scotland. Following the extensive influence of England, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom from the 17th to mid-20th centuries through the British Empire, it has been widely propagated around the world.  Through the spread of American-dominated media and technology, English has become the leading language of international discourse and the lingua franca in many regions.

Historically, English originated from the fusion of closely related dialects, now collectively termed Old English, which were brought to the eastern coast of Great Britain by Germanic settlers (Anglo-Saxons) by the 5th century. The word English is simply the modern spelling of Englisc, the name used by the Angles and Saxons for their language, after the Angles’ ancestral region of Angeln (in what is now Schleswig-Holstein). The language was also influenced early on by the Old Norse language through Viking invasions in the 9th and 10th centuries.

The Norman conquest of England in the 11th century gave rise to heavy borrowings from Norman French, and vocabulary and spelling conventions began to give the appearance of a close relationship with those of Latin-derived Romance languages (though English is not a Romance language itself) to what had then become Middle English. The Great Vowel Shift that began in the south of England in the 15th century is one of the historical events that mark the emergence of Modern English from Middle English.

In addition to words inherited natively from Anglo-Saxon and those borrowed from Norman French, a significant number of English terms are derived from constructions based on root words originally taken from Latin, because Latin in some form was the lingua franca of the Christian Church and of European intellectual life and remains the wellspring of much modern scientific and technical vocabulary.

Owing to the assimilation of words from many other languages throughout history, modern English contains a very large vocabulary, with complex and irregular spelling, particularly of vowels. Modern English has not only assimilated words from other European languages, but from all over the world. The Oxford English Dictionary lists more than 250,000 distinct words, not including many technical, scientific, and slang terms.

Modern English, sometimes described as the first global lingua franca, is the dominant language or in some instances even the required international language of communications, science, information technology, business, seafaring, aviation, entertainment, radio, and diplomacy. Its spread beyond the British Isles began with the growth of the English overseas possessions, and by the 19th century the reach of the British Empire was global.  As a result of overseas colonization from the 16th to 19th centuries, it became the dominant language in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The growing economic and cultural influence of the United States and its status as a global superpower since the Second World War have significantly accelerated the spread of the language across the planet.  English replaced German as the dominant language of science-related Nobel Prize laureates during the second half of the 20th century. English equalled and may have surpassed French as the dominant language of diplomacy during the second half of the 19th century.

A working knowledge of English has become a requirement in a number of fields, occupations and professions such as medicine and computing and as a consequence, more than a billion people speak English to at least a basic level.  It is one of six official languages of the United Nations. One impact of the growth of English is the reduction of native linguistic diversity in many parts of the world. The influence of English continues to play an important role in language attrition. Conversely, the natural internal variety of English along with creoles and pidgins have the potential to produce new distinct languages from English over time.

Basic English Course Outline & Learning Outcomes

Module 1:  Pronunciation and numbers

  • How to learn English
  • The tone in English and on which syllables the stress is placed
  • Pronunciation of the alphabet and words
  • Reading words fluently in succession
  • Numbers and counting up to a 100 and beyond
  • How to pronounce telephone and cell phone numbers
  • How to pronounce quantities and costs

Module 2: Greetings and forms of address

  • Initiate conversation and cultural norms
  • Greeting and courtesies (types of greetings)
  • The importance of greetings
  • Greeting protocol when dealing with younger and older persons
  • Forms of address, good manners and social norms
  • Understanding the rules of etiquette in speaking English
  • Meeting English cultural expectations
  • The family tree and relationships
  • The days of the week, months of the year and the seasons
  • Talking about weather

Module 3: Making appointments

  • Etiquette, keeping an appointment, what to do if you are late
  • Express opinions and feelings (English cultural norms)
  • Asking the time
  • Telling the time
  • Ask for and give simple information with regards to appointments
  • How to use the dictionary

Module 4:  Gender forms and structuring sentences

  • Explaining gender forms in English
  • Personal pronouns
  • Possessive pronouns
  • Professions and the vocabulary thereof

Module 5:  Verbs and tenses

  • The finite and infinitive form of verbs
  • Learning more vocabulary (learner’s own choice of work relating verbs)
  • Building short sentences with pronouns and verbs
  • The past, present and future forms of the tenses
  • Basic negation
  • English etiquette when asking and responding to opinions or feelings

Module 6:  Nouns

  • The learning of the nouns of the body and hands
  • Learning to change these singular forms into plural
  • Learning more vocabulary (learner’s own choice of work relating nouns)
  • Learning nouns related to the working environment
  • Making sentences related to being ill and visiting the doctor
  • Giving information: tell us about yourself
  • Sentence construction

Module 7: Questions and answers

  • Definite and indefinite articles
  • Specific question words (what, where, how, why, who, which)
  • Forming questions
  • Select and present content appropriate to the writing task
  • Prioritization of the written language
  • Explain how to fill in documents or forms
  • Helping clients fill in forms with the correct language
  • Responding to written text with comprehension

Module 8: Office vocabulary and instructions

  • Prepositions
  • Adjectives
  • Adverbs
  • Speaking on the telephone
  • Manners and social norms when giving an instruction
  • Building sentences:writing down a quotation
  • Offering help (with correct etiquette)

Module 9: Your workplace

  • Asking and giving directions
  • Prepositions
  • Conjunctions
  • English sentence structure
  • Addressing gaps and specific learners needs
  • Practice sessions for questions and answers
  • Practice sessions for reading
  • Practice sessions for writing
  • Preparation for final assessment

Module 10: Final summative oral assessment and review

Language Course Assessments

If you’re interested in obtaining a certificate of competence upon completion of your language course, you will need to do the formative and summative assessments included in our language courses. The pass rate for these assessments is 50%, with the exception of 60% for HPCSA members.

Formative assessments:

The formative assessments do not count towards your grade, they are merely there to help with your learning process and to monitor your progress. The formative assessments can be found at the end of each module in the learner manual.

Formative assessments in practice:

Classes:

Delegates will do the formative assessments at home after each class. Upon return to the next class, the memo with the answers will be made available for delegates to grade their assessments.

Distance learning:

Delegates will do the formative assessments at their own pace from home. The memos with the answers will be sent to delegates so that they can grade their assessments.

Summative assessments:

The summative assessments count towards your grade and are there to measure your competence. There are two different types of summative assessments: a written and an oral assessment, each counting 50%.

Written summative assessments in practice:

The written summative assessments are done after each module. There are about 8 of them each consisting of 10 questions.

Classes:

Delegates will do the written summative assessments in class. It is closed book and invigilated by the course facilitator. These assessments are graded by an assessor and moderated both internally and externally.

Distance learning:

Delegates will do the written summative assessments verbally via a video-calling session with a language facilitator. As your course fee only includes 3 contact sessions of 30 minutes each, you will need to do 3 verbal summative assessments at a time. You are however at liberty to decide when you would like to schedule these assessments.

Oral summative assessments in practice:

The oral summative assessment is done right at the end of the course. Delegates are asked to prepare a +- 3-minute-long conversational speech (on their topic of choice) which includes open and closed ended questions for the course facilitator.

Classes:

Delegates will do the oral summative assessments in private with the course facilitator.

Distance Learning:

Delegates will do the oral summative assessment during a final video-calling session with a language facilitator.