Evaluating students’ perceptions of a scenario-situated business communication course
Research has identified that Business students, who are immersed in theoretical concepts, may not be equipped with the skills required to operate successfully in the global workplace in the English medium (Evans, 2013). Secondly, tasks in Business English textbooks tend not to bear much resemblance to those of a work environment (Bremner, 2010; Evans, 2013). This paper discusses an optional written business communication course open to international postgraduate business school students. Although the course is worth ten credits, it can only be used for a separate award, not part of their degree programme. The course focuses on the use of appropriate register, Business English vocabulary and intertextuality, as these features have been identified as pivotal to successful written business communication (Evans, 2013). A short questionnaire was distributed to the students towards the end of course to elicit their perceptions of the usefulness of the course. Consisting of two closed questions and one open question, data was then coded using constructivist grounded theory (Mills, Birks and Hoare, 2014), from which themes emerged providing valuable and unexpected feedback. The primary finding was that the course appeared to have alerted students to the importance of the business writing genre, resulting in an overwhelming request for more instruction.
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