Language Policy of Necmettin Erbakan University
Necmettin Erbakan University aims to be an attractive university for teachers, students and international researchers. Therefore, the university has widened its internationalisation policies, which includes a clear language policy within the institution. The main goals of this policy are to contribute to the development of students’ language proficiency, to the development of the academic use of language and to the ability to communicate in different languages. Thereby, the university will promote mobility both for education and employment, increase employability and competitiveness on the job market among its students and staff. Moreover, it will provide linguistic diversity and become an attractive university to international researchers, teachers and students. This policy also requires communicating information through home pages, relevant documents and publications in English. A further step towards internationalisation is to provide courses in English, not only to acquire the language itself but also to provide students with courses which have English as the medium of instruction. Therefore, the number of courses in which English is the medium of teaching is increased and will be enhanced in order to encourage mobility and improve the quality of research and education according to the objectives of the Bologna Process.
In order to enhance and facilitate the use of English, NEU took various steps and is planning to further develop it. In that context, NEU provides preparation classes mainly in English, but also in German and Arabic at the School of Foreign Languages. The main goal of these classes is to provide the necessary level of language skills which some of the departments of NEU require due to their courses taught in English as the medium of instruction. However, the classes are not limited to them and students who wish to improve their English are able to enrol for the prep year. As stated, five departments have English as the medium of teaching and three new departments have applied to start their courses in English. Furthermore, the Faculty of Divinity has Arabic as the medium of instruction in one of its programmes, and the Faculty of Education has an English Language and a German Language Teaching department.
NEU has also extracurricular language courses open to both its students and staff and also to anyone who wants to learn a new language. The courses are carried out by the School of Foreign Languages and the languages provided are English, German, Arabic and French; however, there might be courses in other languages depending on the demand. Student associations also hold speaking clubs bringing both local and international students together. The school of foreign languages further carries out language exams for students, which includes the exam for outgoing Erasmus students.
The university is supportive of student and staff mobility and implements among others Erasmus+ programmes in this context. The number of outgoing and incoming students is high, but NEU aims to receive more students form the EU region as well. Therefore, students who wish to do their mobility at NEU are able to take one of the various cultural courses, which also include a Turkish “crash” course. For NEU students who wish to go abroad, the university offers a language exam for student mobility. Hereby, the International Office cooperates with the School of Foreign Languages to prepare and carry out the language exam in English and German for student mobility. However, students may present other certifications to prove their language skills and thus do not have to take the language exam of the university. Academic and administrative staff should provide official certificates to prove their level of foreign language.
Therefore, the aims of the language policy of Necmettin Erbakan University are as following:
1. At the graduate and postgraduate levels, English should be used to a greater extent to encourage mobility and attract incoming students.
2. International communication skills of local students need to be improved in order to increase their possibilities of becoming part of the international community. Thereby, they will have a higher chance to apply for and be accepted for studies abroad. At the same time, they will be able to build a network which will provide them higher employment opportunities.
3. NEU will be able to attract qualified international researchers and teachers, and students.
4. The international visibility of Necmettin Erbakan University will be enhanced by providing information about the institution in English (or other languages), and by making relevant web sites, documents and publications internationally available.
5. Some departments have English as the medium of instruction and thus these departments will contribute to the internationalisation of the institution.
6. The number of courses given in English should increase, especially at postgraduate levels. An increased use of English should also be encouraged in areas of research.
7. Necmettin Erbakan University is aware that linguistic diversity and competence in languages is an additional qualification for employment globally. Thus, it provides them the chance to learn languages and though these languages it will equip them with the awareness of cultural diversities.
8. Various activities, such as symposia, seminars or workshops, within the university are carried out in English, and these should be encouraged and improved.
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