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A database of selected, reviewed, tested, assessed and validated e-learning based language teaching sources addressed to Higher education students for the learning of 18 different European languages.

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Academic Insights – Succeeding in exams (video)

Date of Publication

2021 (ongoing)

Target Group


Domain Area

Teacher Education

Learning Scenario

Autonomous learning
Classroom Context

Target Language


Language of Instruction


CEFR level


Type of Material


Linguistic Features



Critical Thinking


This session is part of a course strongly focused on Student Life in general and exam skills in particular. This video provides information for students and addresses their general needs in academic life when confronted with the burden of exams. It is easily adaptable to different language levels, starting at B2, maybe even B1. The resource can be used as a stand alone or in conjunction with a series of other videos appearing under the same general heading, which can help complete a set of vocabulary skills in the field of academic English. The situations depicted are applicable in other languages and situations of students’ lives, making this resource an adaptable example for a task which can become a podcast, for instance.

Case study

I would use this resource just before an exam is about to take place so that students feel more confident and gain some insight into some exam techniques, regarding English for academic purposes within the area of teacher education. However, this could be applied to any class of English either for specific purposes or general English (or even EFL). One effective way of using this resource (video) is to use it as a trigger for a discussion on the importance of evaluation and the role of teachers in it. As teachers, we are aware of not only the importance of evaluation but also of the shortcomings that it may have. I would elicit some words from the students on the idea of evaluation and the technique of writing exams successfully. Focus should also be given to specific vocabulary such as “concise, legible, readable, insight, etc). Then, while watching the video, students would take notes of what is being said, organising the tips mentioned and scoring them in terms of importance (for them).
I am sure this is a highly useful resource as it allows students to 1) reflect on evaluation, 2) become aware of the importance of evaluation and how to write exams successfully; 2) deconstruct some myths around the idea of evaluation; 3) develop speaking and listening skills; 4) expand vocabulary.


This short video is suitable to be used within a wider didactic unit focused on Student life in general.
Warmer – The lecturer starts by writing the topic ‘student life’ as the main idea in a mindmapping app or on the IWB, motivating students to speak about it
Step 1 - Students develop a brainstorming session through which they add branches to the main topic, thus creating subtopics. The whole group debates about the importance of the different subtopics.
Step 2 – The lecturer asks whether students view exams as something stressful and asks what can be done to overcome this aspect of students’ life successfully. By the end of this brief debate, the video is presented.
Step 3 – After watching the video, the students share if they agree or disagree with the skills referred to.
Step 4 – As homework or as a new activity, the lecturer asks the students to write an argumentative text about the importance of success in exams.


Comprehensive approach
Capacity to match the needs of lecturers and students


Added value
The provided tangible improvements


Motivation enhancement
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


This resource matches the needs of both lecturers and students, since its contents are applicable to different situations of the academic life, both from the teaching and learning perspective. The resource can be accessed through different devices, making it easily accessible and usable, thus undemanding from the technical point of view. It allows students to reflect upon their posture regarding the subject matter and, at the same time, helps them overcome any insecurities they might have. As such it is motivating for students to improve their language skills and even inspirational. The resource can be applied to other language learning contexts and cultures.
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