On May 28, the first year of training for students and teachers of the Karaganda Medical University (KMU) under the Shakhmardan Yessenov Foundation English Language Programme wrapped up. 165 people from this regional university were able to improve their language skills, including in the professional sphere.
“157 people completed their training. 8 participants of the programme were unable to do this due to low attendance and failure to pass tests,” Programme Coordinator of the foundation Aigerim Sultan remarks. “In October when we first started, there were no students in the advanced and upper intermediate level groups, today, the British teachers Benjamin Green, Pauline Bezzant and Antony Durrant have helped 60 of their students to now speak the language at these levels.”
Doctoral students, master’s students, undergraduates and teachers were among the participants of the programme. The tests they took at the beginning of the year determined that most of them have a pre-intermediate or intermediate level of English proficiency. At the end of the year, they all moved up a notch. 17 people passed the upper intermediate test, while 32 KMU medical students improved their English to the advanced level. According to the university’s management, the institution received much positive feedback from students on its English language courses.
“We have another year of the programme ahead of us. Many people would like to continue their classes with native speakers. Everything was perfectly organized, and students had the opportunity to immerse themselves in the language right at their university. Many of the participants told me that they were finally able to cross the barrier and start speaking English. Their pronunciation has also improved,” KMU Vice-Rector for Strategic Development and Science Anar Turmukhambetova explains.
The results of the first year of the programme were achieved: students and teachers managed to move to the next level on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages scale. Jointly with the Bonas McFarlane Kazakhstan, the foundation selected the 15 best students of the programme – teachers and PhD / master’s students, based on the test results. The Yessenov Foundation will finance to finance their IELTS exams as promised. As they are planning to enroll in a doctoral programme, many of them need a certificate.
The winners were selected based on the results of their final test; their attendance and homework were also taken into account. They are expected to take the IELTS exam at the end of June. One of the best students of the English programme was 37-year-old doctoral student and Director of the research center Dmitry Babenko. Dmitry also won a scholarship to study at the Yessenov Data Lab, a summer school for young data scientists, which begins in July.
In September, a new stream of Karaganda Medical University students will be selected for the second year of study under the foundation’s English Language Programme. Plans are underway to enroll 90 students, 70 teachers, undergraduates and doctoral students into the programme. Classes will begin in October. The Yessenov Foundation English Language Programme is offered at regional universities in Kazakhstan, and has already proven itself at Yessenov University in Aktau (2013-2016) and Korkyt Ata Kyzylorda State University (2017-2019). Last year, Karaganda Medical University won the grant for the programme in an open competition. The winning university conducts the programme for 2 years, at the end of which the best teachers and students get the opportunity to take IELTS exams for free
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