Looking back on 2018
EAP (English for Academic Purposes) at Edinburgh Napier University runs bespoke summer schools and short courses every year. This year we had a spectacular summer with nearly one hundred international students attending our short courses. A total of 114 hours of English classes and 6 hours of guest lectures were taught; 10 attractions in Edinburgh, 4 in Glasgow and 7 in other Scottish cities were visited; a 3-day trip down to London and another trip up to Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye were organised; and industry visits, service learning and sport activities also took place.
In August, a group of students had the opportunity to experience the world’s largest arts festival – The Edinburgh Festival Fringe. They saw a variety of entertaining shows; danced at a Ceilidh; and were wowed by the fireworks at the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
The students, from all over the world, came to Edinburgh Napier University to study on a short course. Not only did they go home with dramatically improved English language skills, but also a having experienced a head-to-toe shower of Scottish history and culture and a course full of energy and fun: a genuine once-in-a-lifetime experience!
It was a great pleasure to be the provider of these fantastic experiences for the students. We would like to take this opportunity to share them with you in more detail.
Intercultural Dialogue: Moscow – Edinburgh Continuing Education Programme
From 11 June to 15 June 2018 16 students from Moscow studied on a one-week short course that combined intercultural communication, presentation skills, and the history of the UK. The content of the course was designed around the requirements of our partner university, The People’s Friendship University of Russia. The students on the course were all extremely thirsty for cultural knowledge and enjoyed their week in Scotland immensely.
Cultural and Language Immersion Scheme with official IELTS test on campus
From 30 June to 30 July 201, 39 students from City University of Hong Kong joined an intensive Cultural and Language Immersion Scheme at Napier for a month. On the last day of the programme, all students sat an official IELTS test on campus. Impressively, 87% students improved their IELTS score by at least 0.5; 12% of students improved by 1.0; and 5% improved by 1.5: all within only 4 weeks!
However, this programme was more than just IELTs. A number of cultural excursions and industry visits were also arranged: a Edinburgh Castle and Old Town walking tour; a visit to the National Piping Centre in Glasgow; a trip to the Loch Lomond Highland Games; as well as visits to St Andrews, Stirling Whitelee Windfarm and Glengoyne Distillery.
They put the presentation and survey skills they learnt in class to good use by carrying out a street survey on Scottish people’s views about Scottish independence.
To help the students get an insight into community work, we partnered with Streetwork Edinburgh, a charity which works with the homeless. The students learnt about the services they offer and the work they do to improve the quality of life of homeless people in Edinburgh. In addition, the students had the opportunity to give homeless people a gift that they had prepared in advance.
The students also turned their hand to conservation work for Heritage Scotland in the Hermitage of Braid.
The highlights of the programme for the majority of the students were the sporting activities: a golf lesson at the stunning Archerfield Links golf course and a rugby lesson in Roseburn Park next to the world famous Murrayfield Stadium.
It was first time we’ve housed summer school students in homestay families, which was an extraordinary experience for all. 94% of students found that living in a host family helped them to gain a more in-depth understanding of Scottish culture as well as improving their English communication skills.