Faculty of Art, Design and Humanities

Centre for English Language Learning

Faculty of Art, Design and Humanities

Centre for English Language Learning

TEFL 3004

English Language for Specific and Professional Purposes

Module Handbook

Academic Year 2021/22

Module Leader:

Steven Bower

Contact Details:

Centre for English Language Learning                             

Room: Vijay Patel Pod 3.09          

Tel: 0116 2078533                         

Email: sbower@dmu.ac.uk


Welcome to TEFL 3004: English language for specific and professional purposes. This module is aimed at and designed for prospective TESOL/TEFL practitioners of all types worldwide.

It is estimated that there are 2 billion English speakers in the world, and only 400 million of these are native speakers. There has never been a better time to consider moving into the profession of Teaching English as a Foreign Language or for improving existing TEFL skills. This module is ideally placed to equip you with the professional skills required for a successful career in Teaching English as a Foreign Language.

The module will be taught by staff from DMU’s Centre for English Language Learning.

  • The Centre for English Language Learning (CELL) is accredited by the British Council.
  • Every member of the English language department is highly qualified, experienced and brings a truly international dimension to their teaching.
  • Most CELL teachers have been guest speakers at international conferences and have lived and taught extensively both in the UK and overseas.
  • CELL is a member of key English teaching academic communities such as the British Association of Lecturers in English for Academic Purposes (BALEAP) and the International Association of Teachers in English as a Foreign Language (IATEFL).
  • CELL has strong relationships with overseas English Language providers, which often enhance students’ employment prospects.
  • Students who demonstrate a high degree of teaching competence are often employed part-time by CELL for its summer schools and pre-sessional English courses

Module Description

This module further develops skills and theories acquired in the first and second year modules. We will be looking at English for Specific Purposes (ESP) which is teaching English to learners who need English for their work. ESP students may be accountants, sales reps, lawyers, bar and restaurant staff, airline staff, health workers or students preparing to start a degree  course in an English-speaking country. Teachers need the skills and flexibility to design courses that meet the specific needs of these different types of learner. We will therefore be looking at case studies, discussing needs analysis, and considering syllabus and materials design for EAP learners. You will also have the opportunity to shadow teachers of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) and English as a Second Language (ESL) either online or in classrooms, depending on COVID19 restrictions.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this module you should be able to:

  1. Evaluate and draft an ESP syllabus
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of current trends and issues in ELT
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of needs analysis in ESP
  4. Demonstrate awareness of teaching and learning strategies for a variety of ESP contexts
  5. Critically evaluate the application of ELT methodologies and techniques in the EAP classroom

TEFL2004 Assessment Details

Type of assessmentDurationWeighting %
Syllabus design plan with rationale Deadline: Week 11 Friday 17th December 2021, 12 noon1500 words (max)50%
Reflective journal on observed lessons Deadline: Week 27 Friday 29th April 2022, 12 noon2000 words (max)50%

Recommended Reading

There is no mandatory set text for this module. However, these texts are recommended:

  1. Teaching Business English – 1994 Mark Ellis and Christine Johnson (OUP)
  2. English for Specific Purposes – 1987 Tom Hutchinson and Alan Waters (OUP)
  3. Language Curriculum Design – 2010 I.S.P. Nation and John Macalister (Routledge)
  4. Task-based Language Teaching – 2004 David Nunan (CUP)
  5. Curriculum Development in Language Teaching – 2001 Jack C. Richards (CUP)


ELT Journal

TESOL Journal


These websites offer an overview of effective on-line learning for the 4 skills as well as useful resources and research based analysis of teaching learning and assessment issues in receptive and productive skills.


Good ideas for teachers. Limited access for non-members


A widely recognised resource for students and teachers alike


Useful discussion forums on what works and doesn’t work in class


Internet Tesl journal featuring research papers and articles as well as ideas for teaching


Useful resources and theories for productive and receptive skills


Website for the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language.


Practical ideas for EL teachers as well as some insightful articles and commentaries

http://hancockmcdonald.com/ Practical ideas

Teaching Staff

Steven Bower

Steven Bower studied Modern and Medieval languages at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. He began teaching EFL in France in 1978 and between 1982 and 1990 he worked in a variety of posts in Cambridge and Greece, teaching all age groups, levels, exam types and many nationalities. In 1990 he moved to Athens where he trained teachers on Cambridge CTEFLA, DOTE, COTE and DELTA courses as well as in-house courses for new teachers and teachers of exam classes. On returning to England in 2005 he was director of studies at a language school in Stamford, Lincs, worked on pre-sessional courses at Essex University and since 2008 he has been teaching General English, English for Academic Purposes and MA modules in Intercultural Communication, Research Methods in ELT and Listening and Speaking for the TEFL MA at DMU. He is co-author (with Emma Jackson) of CELL’s pre-sessional D course materials. His particular interests are Greek and Albanian, learner independence and design and adaptation of teaching materials.

Room: Vijay Patel POD 3.09

Tel: 0116 2078533


Assignment 1: Syllabus Design Plan with Rationale

Create a particular scenario where a group of learners would need to learn English, and suggest the outline of a syllabus – with a rationale – that would meet their specific needs.  

Deadline:     Friday 17h December 2021, 12 noon

Length:        1000 – 1500 words

Some examples of contexts that you may wish to consider might be:

  • International students studying English before beginning a degree programme in the UK.
  • Refugees and asylum seekers in Leicester.
  • Airline staff in (pick a country!) – don’t forget to specify their role.
  • Sales staff in a multinational company (again, pick a country!).
  • International footballers who have just joined a Premier League team
  • Nursing staff working in a hospital.
  • People working in travel / hospitality industries (reps, bar staff, hotel staff)
  • ‘Gamesmakers’ working in a city about to host the Olympic Games.
  • Students preparing to take an IELTS test.

You are free to be as creative and original as you like with your learning context, but your choice will be discussed in a tutorial.

You must provide a rationale for the course, with theoretical justification, which covers the following factors

  • Context:
    • Who are the learners?
    • Where are they?
    • How long is the course?
    • How many hours a week will they have?
    • How long is each lesson?
  • Needs analysis
  • Learning theories
  • Teaching methodology
  • Materials choice/adaptation
  • Assessment of the students

You should also provide the following:

1. An outline of the syllabus

  • This should give an idea of what would be taught through the course – you do not need to give detailed lesson plans for each day.
  • Look at Blackboard for examples of different ways a syllabus could be presented – a simple ‘timetable’ approach, for example, is often the clearest.
  • Or you could consider adopting the approach that coursebooks use on their opening pages – there are lots of examples of coursebooks in the library.

2. Examples of materials

  • You do not have to design materials for this task, but please include in an appendix referenced examples of materials that you could use in specific lessons. These could be from websites, for example, or published coursebooks.

TEFL 3004 Assessment 1 Marking Criteria


  • Details of learning context: Who / where are learners? Why are they learning English? No. of lessons planned / length of lessons, local conditions, advantages and limitations (time / facilities available / students’ other commitments).
  • Needs analysis: How conducted? Results.
  • Rationale: Methodology, choice and adaptation of materials.
  • Assessment: How? Why? Relationship to needs and input.
  • Outline of syllabus: Clear aims, teacher(s) will know what to do.
  • Sample materials: Can be screenshots in the body of the essay or in an appendix.
70-100%Excellent response to all requirements.Shows detailed understanding of teaching context and its advantages and limitations.Excellent needs analysis that gets all relevant information from stakeholders.Excellent rationale for choice of teaching methods and materials.Assessment very clearly related to needs analysis and input.Syllabus is clearly related to learner needs, practicable and clear to teachers.All relevant sample materials provided.No errors in language.
60-70%Very good response to all requirements.Shows good understanding of teaching context and its advantages and limitations.Very good needs analysis that gets most relevant information from stakeholders.Very good rationale for choice of teaching methods and materialsAssessment relates well to needs analysis and input.Syllabus is well related to learner needs, mostly practicable and clear to teachers.Most relevant sample materials provided.Few errors in language.
50-59%Responds well to all requirements.Demonstrates fair understanding of teaching context and its advantages and limitations.Good needs analysis but may overlook small details.Good rationale for choice of methods and materials but may have some small misunderstandings or misinterpretations.Assessment is mostly well related to needs analysis and input.Syllabus is mostly related to learner needs, may present small amount of confusion for teachers.Materials provided.Language has minor inaccuracies.
40-49%Responds adequately to all requirements. Some may be addressed more effectively than others.Demonstrates understanding of teaching context and its advantages and limitations but may overlook some details. Adequate needs analysis to provide a reasonable picture of learner needs.Adequate rationale for choice of methods and materials but may not demonstrate complete understanding.Assessment mostly relevant to needs analysis and input but certain parts may be flawed or absent. Syllabus is mostly adequate for students’ needs but may contain some irrelevant material or unclear aims.Most but not all materials provided.Minor issues with grammar, vocabulary and spelling. 
0-39%Responses inadequate or missing.No reference to methods and techniques or understanding of them very limitedNeeds analysis does not provide a useful picture of learners’ needs.Rationale confused Assessment inadequate or not included.Syllabus is too vague or not included.Materials missing or references to materials unclear.Serious errors in language.
TEFL 3004 Assessment 2 Write a reflective journal based on your classroom experience during Term 2.


Deadline: 29thth April 2022, 12 noon, Turnitin

Length: 1500-2000 words

You are going to observe a number of lessons in the coming weeks, the last two of which at least will be with the same class teacher. At certain points in the lesson the teacher wil ask you to take over for a few minutes, maybe to set up an activity, monitor as students do the activity, or take reporting back from the students at the end of an activity. In your last observation, with the permission of the class teacher, you should prepare a short activity to teach.

During each lesson, you should make notes on what you observe, then write these up after the class based on the areas listed below. For the assignment itself, you should write up your notes for two of the observed lessons in which you took over from the teacher for part of the lesson, but you may compare with previous observed classes if relevant (for example, if a previous tutor used very different methods). You should focus on:

Class dynamics:

What nationalities are represented? What is their language level? How old are the students? Do they appear to get on well, or are there any tensions? How do they relate to their teacher? What interaction patterns are used (eg T>S, S>S, Pairs, Groups)?

Lesson aims:

What does the teacher want the students to be able to do by the end of the lesson?

Teaching materials:

What materials is the teacher using and does s/he make any adaptations to the published / in-house material? Why (not)?

Achievement of aims:

Was the lesson effective in achieving the aims? How and to what extent?

Classroom management

How did the teacher establish rapport with the students? How did s/he give instructions and check that the students understood? What interaction patterns did s/he use, and why? How did the teacher grade his / her language when addressing the students?

Your contribution:

What did you do? Did you feel you were successful? Why (not)? Would you do the same thing differently if you were to do it again? Think about the clarity of your instructions, language grading, contextualising the activity.

Materials adaptation:

Regardless of how successful the materials were for the lesson, what adaptations could be made to them? How might they be exploited differently? Is there a supplementary activity you could suggest that would support the learning aims?

TEFL 3004 Assignment 2 Reflective Journal

Marking Criteria


  1. Ability to assess classroom dynamics
  2. Understanding of lesson aims
  3. Understanding of materials management
  4. Assessment of own contribution to the lessons
  5. Suggestions for adaptations to the materials

70-100%Responds with exceptional perceptiveness to all requirements. Description of lessons is logical and illustrated throughout with examples to make sure reader can follow. Is consistently able to analyse and draw implications from observation of student reactions and success or otherwise of materials / tasks Is consistently able to reflect perceptively on own performance and development Analysis is well backed up by pedagogical theoriesNo grammatical or spelling errors, and all references accurately cited  
60-70%Responds well to all five requirements.Description of lessons is mostly logical and illustrated with examples to make sure reader can follow. Is able to analyse and draw implications from observation of student reactions and success or otherwise of materials / tasks Able to reflect perceptively on own performance and development though maybe not consistentlyAnalysis is backed up by some pedagogical theories.There are few grammatical mistakes, and references are accurately cited  
50-59%Responds adequately to all of the five requirements.Description of lessons is mostly clear although sometimes an example is needed. Shows some good analysis and is frequently able to draw implications from observation of student reactions, success or otherwise of materials / tasks Shows knowledge of approaches and methodsAble to reflect on own contribution and developmentLinks to pedagogical theoriesMinor issues with writing e.g. grammar, punctuation, and references.  
40-49%Responds adequately to most of the five requirements but not to all.Description of what took place in the lesson may be confusing because writer does not always take reader into account  Tends to be descriptive but does show some ability to analyse; sometimes fails to draw implications from what is observed – student reactions, success or otherwise of materials / tasks.Some reflection on own contribution and development but may sometimes be superficial. Shows some awareness of pedagogical theory but may not always be correctly interpreted.There may be some issues with the writing, e.g. grammar, punctuation, and references.
0-39%Demonstrates inadequate subject knowledge.The writing lacks coherenceDescriptive, shows no evidence of capacity to reflect critically.Unable to reflect on own contributionNo links to pedagogical theoryMajor language issues, inaccurate grammar, inaccurate spelling, references missing or inaccurate  

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