Idiomatic language in teaching.

In conversation with: Martin Binks, Stephanie Bridges, Mike Clifford. Produced: September 2009; Duration: 1 minute : 36 seconds.

Mike Clifford, Faculty of Engineering:
I remember one particular incident, I do some lectures on composite materials, and there was a lot of terminology in there that's, some of it's quite colloquial, so I've had students, particularly some Erasmus students, some French students asking me after the lecture, you know, can I go through some of these phrases with you? Phrases like "shelf life". Which clearly didn't translate. You know, I would say that a material has a long shelf life, and they maybe look up "shelf" and look up "life" and be very puzzled so that needed a bit of explanation.

Martin Binks, NUBS:
We have to make sure that… Well, a) you try to avoid idiom because you can't come out with expressions that are only really familiar to one maybe minority or small majority of the people in the lecture theatre, so you have to avoid that.

Stephanie Bridges, School of Pharmacy:
I think I've perhaps also become a little bit more aware of the way I speak and the idiomatic language I use, or phrases that I just understand and certainly the last, recently, I've found that I've been explaining things and I haven't, I haven't not used the idiom but I would use the phrase and then say, "and by that I mean…" whatever. And quite often as I've been explaining that, I've wondered how many students, generally, in the room, that applies to, whether it is international students or whether actually, some of the UK students might not understand my phrases because they haven't come across them or, or maybe they're just quite a bit younger then me.

Short paper

Culture shock, learning shock, and re-entry shock outlines the thinking of several anthropologists, business consultants and educators all concerned with the effects of individuals interacting with others in learning contexts, within cultures perceived to be foreign, over a sustained period of time. Culture shock concerns not only "off shore", but also "on shore" international students and staff. The literature discerns several stages of culture shock, and its converse, reverse or re-entry culture shock. The paper considers how acculturation is likely to proceed, depending on the extent to which links with the originating culture are maintained, and how important links with new groups are perceived to be. The role of "identity" in the acculturation process is also considered.
... more from Culture shock, learning shock, and re-entry shock.

More scholarly interpretations of the theoretical basis:

... all Internationalisation short papers

Teaching at Nottingham website resource Should I make handouts available in advance? - opinions ... ""I don't really have time, but now I am producing bullet points which either…"   (Jul 2004)

Teaching at Nottingham website resource Handouts for learning in lectures.   (Jan 2007; 3 min 41s video)

The Nottingham context

Dr Rachel Scudamore

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