Wawasan Open University (WOU), through the School of Education, Languages and Communications (SELC), conducted a 10-day English Language class at the main campus in Penang for 18 undergraduate students from Silpakorn University, Thailand, on request.
The Thai educational technology students underwent a 50-hour hands-on workshop from July 16th to 27th to enhance their English language and communication skills for daily interaction and to improve their learning and presentations. The trainers were Dr Por Fei Ping, Dr Tan Saw Fen, Arathai Din Eak, Ong Cheng Teik and Ooi Li Hsien from SELC.
The 10 interactive lessons covered the following topics: English for International Communication, English for Travelling, Practical English Usage, Common Errors in English Usage, Technologies for Practising English, English for Presentation, English for Effective Communication Skills, Getting Started with Academic Writing, Students’ Chosen Technologies for Practising English, and Business English.
The students worked individually as well as in groups and pairs and participated in class presentations and other collaborative activities. The purpose of the training was to greatly improve the participants’ ability and confidence in communicating in English in social situations and other settings.
When closing the training workshop, Dean of SELC, Prof Santhiram Raman, remarked, “You have come to the right place because technology is our main forte. We are an open university and therefore we make use of technology to deliver our courses. You have come here to improve your English and to do so, ideally, you would need to spend 6 months with us. Because with languages, you can only improve if you practise what you have learnt; otherwise you will forget everything.”
“Whatever you have learnt now, if you are shy to speak in English with others, attempt to speak in English among yourselves first. Make mistakes, laugh about it, and correct it! That is the best way to learn a language. Then you will build your confidence and your vocabulary,” Prof Santhiram suggested.
He also encouraged the students to take time to explore the food and culture of Penang, and take home happy memories of WOU. A Thai student representative, Budsababun Saengphloeng, spoke in English to thank WOU for the good learning experience and hospitality extended to them during the duration.
All participants received a certificate at the end of the training from Prof Santhiram. Also present at the closing were Asst Prof Dr Anirut Satiman, Assistant to the President for Academic Affairs, and Asst Prof Dr Siwanit Autthawuttikul, from Silpakorn.