English Language and Linguistics > For Students > Exam Hints

For Students

Exam Hints

Examenskolloquium

WHAT HAVE WE LEARNT in abstract terms?

Students of English learn a variety of so-called hard and soft skills that enable them to "function" effectively in a variety of real life situations, where language and communication are important.

Generally, these skills are centred around abilities of communication and interdisciplinary structured thinking. In our days we are basically related to the application of new media and the ability to function in a cross- or intercultural working context. These skills can be related to the study of English language and linguistics in various ways.

Studying English offers the opportunity to work in groups, for instance, when you want to prepare for the final exam. In some seminars projects are pursued in workgroups, for instance, when web pages have to be presented as in the seminar on English varieties around the world.

While studying English you will have the opportunity of reading a vast variety of English text types ranging from the minutes of a meeting to a book review or an academic paper. In seminars you will be trained to present your views orally to a specific audience. All this will contribute to your communicative competence in the English language, as well as in German.

One of the great fun aspects of studying English is meeting English speaking people from all over the world, since English is the mother tongue of people from many different countries and it is used as an international lingua franca in most academic and business related communication. English at Chemnitz offers regular study trips to England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, traineeships / internships to various places as far as South Africa and New Zealand and university exchange programmes with British and Canadian departments of English.

Studying English allows you to see things in their social and cultural context. Since language is a manmade adaptive system of communication, we always have to be aware of the function of certain forms, i.e. that the writer or speaker intents to achieve a certain effect in the reader or listener when he uses certain phrases and expressions. Analyzing and discussing these functions of language forms is a central power tool of studying English, that is why a text will always be used as a basis for final exams.

The skills and competence described above can help you in a vast variety of job-related situations. These job aspects can be complemented by the other subjects that you pursue in addition to English, that is why we recommend in particular the combination of English and business administration or computer science. In this way you can, for instance, become an information broker who provides, processes and presents information in a reader-specific way, this can be on a webpage or on a poster, in an oral presentation or in a project proposal.

In any case, it is extremely important for students of English to remain open and broad in their outlook and adapt to the changing opportunities of international communication in a more and more internationalizing world.

Josef Schmied