High-achievers in University English courses rewarded

Michelle Leung

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Thirty-nine students at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) have been presented with the Outstanding Student Award by the English Language Centre (ELC) for their achievements and positive attitude towards learning English.

The prize presentation ceremony, attended by department heads, programme leaders and ELC tutors who shared the happiness with the candidates, was held on 25 October. The award is designed to recognise a student’s course work and examination performance in the University English: Spoken Language or Written Language course, as well as their participation and attitude in the course.

Ms Jean Young, Head of ELC, believed the award was an incentive for students to not only learn English, but to excel.

“Over a thousand students take each course every year and we select only the top 1% to receive the award. In this way, we recognise those who have achieved considerably more than is required to pass the course,” Ms Young said.

The University English: Spoken Language and Written Language courses are credit-bearing courses totalling 108 hours of study. Apart from formal English classes, they include an independent study component where students plan an individualised language study programme under the guidance of the class teacher.

It is the fourth year the ELC has organised the Outstanding Student Award. Based on the encouraging results of the exercise conducted among bachelor’s degree students in the last three years, nomination this year was extended to associate degree students of the English for Academic Studies course.

Joe Wong Chung-kwan, a final-year student in the Department of Public and Social Administration, won the Outstanding Student Award in both written and spoken language courses. She appreciated the relaxing learning atmosphere ELC created, which allowed her to enjoy learning English.

“ELC provides many resources for independent learning. I could easily locate the resources addressing my own learning interests and needs,” Joe said. “The teachers there, instead of pointing out the mistakes we made just as the secondary school teachers did, encouraged us to participate in and learn from the activities. I think this boosted our motivation to learn.”

Sam Leung Ho-chuen, a Year 2 student in the Department of Biology and Chemistry, won the award in the written language course. He believed the ELC courses were good for students to keep improving their English.

“We had English lessons almost every day at secondary school. I think the ELC courses are useful because mastering English is also important to science students,” he said.

To help students master their English language skills - essential to success in a globalised world - CityU has implemented a series of courses and learning activities. Besides the courses offered by ELC, the University has also taken other initiatives, including the Language Companion Course, English Language Clinic and English immersion programme, to create an environment that motivates students to improve their English.

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