The online course "Marktwirtschaft" (market economy) provided by Deutsche Welle is divided into 26 lessons, each consisting of a podcast and covering various areas of field of economy. Both technical and everyday vocabulary is treated - the situations and actions selected are very realistic. Each podcast can be downloaded as an mp3 file, and depending on individual abilities and eventual comprehension problems. Furthermore, each lesson includes a PDF document with exercises that should preferably be done as part of a lesson, as the nature of the exercises requires individual correction by a teacher. The topics covered are wide ranging and include: research and development, structural change in agriculture, freight transport, corporate finance, waste water management, marketing, self-employment and franchising and many other.
Marketplace: Lesson 26 Corporate Culture
The source was tested with students of the Faculty of Applied Languages.
Number of students: 24
The following parts of the materials were tested for teaching:
The students were asked to work independently on the above units. In advance, they were told which language skills they should pay attention to. Then, students were asked to rate the exercises in terms of their comprehensibility and usefulness. Students were asked to comment on whether they found the learning materials presented to be motivating and useful, and whether they thought they contributed to the development of their German language skills and the individual language skills.
The lesson on corporate culture begins with a rather extensive and time-consuming listening text that lasts 24 minutes. Although the text is interesting in terms of content and offers many suggestions for the students and provides new insights, in our opinion it is too long; the students' attention waned after the first third of the listening text. It is a pity, it would be of advantage if the listening text was divided into two or more parts.
The second part - the exercises The background for the second part of the lesson - for the exercises - is the listening text. The exercises are very carefully prepared, the student will practice several skills. A large part of the exercises is devoted to the development of both lexis and grammar. In the exercises the student acquires new knowledge in the field of business culture and has the opportunity to deepen it.
The transcription of the listening text can be considered a plus, which contributes to a better understanding of the listening text.
The students rated the exercises quite positively, The students found the learning units very interesting and motivating. Overall, it can be stated that the presented teaching material is satisfactory, the students have worked well with it and have evaluated it as useful for the development of speaking skills.
The 26 podcasts provided can be worked on independently of each other, no fixed order has to be considered. The audio sequences are designed independently of each other. If there are difficulties in listening comprehension or doubts about individual passages, a manuscript can be easily accessed and downloaded as a PDF file for each of the podcasts. Each podcast also has supplementary teaching material (called a "lesson"), which contains a wide variety of exercises (word and sentence completions, multiple choice, cloze texts, tasks for group discussions) that can be worked on in a teaching unit but also in self-study.
It is advisable to listen to the podcast 1-2 times before working on the tasks or using the manuscript, as it allows you to train your listening comprehension effectively.
Capacity to match the needs of lecturers and students
The provided tangible improvements
The capacity to motivate students to improve their language skills
Effectiveness in introducing innovative, creative and previously unknown approaches to LSP learning
Measurement of the transferable potential and possibility to be a source of further capitalisation/application for other language projects in different countries
Skills assessment and validation
Availability of appropriate tools for lecturers to monitor students’ progress and for students to assess own progress and to reflect on learning
Flexibility of the contents and possibilities for the LSP lecturers to adapt the contents to their and to students’ need
Assess the technical usability from the point of view of the lecturer and the student
Assess the accessibility from the point of view of the lecturer and the student
Since the offer is not an updated radio play and part of a book production from 1991, there may be some outdated information with a time reference. This may, for example, affect currency units that may have been mentioned. A positive aspect is the large amount of realistic audio material, which is supplemented by manuscripts, so that any doubts about listening comprehension problems can be cleared up during self-study. If the offer is used in the context of self-study, the lack of an opportunity to obtain feedback on the exercises done proves to be a minus point. Within a teaching unit, the podcasts can be perfectly used as a preparatory homework assignment in order to subsequently work on the topic with the help of the exercises provided.
Website of the Teaching Source: