Course detail

Academic Skills

FAST-BYA12Acad. year: 2022/2023

In this course we will, with a primary focus on speaking, cover a variety of topics useful to students and academic workers who need to use English during their studies or work. These topics are outlined in the syllabus below. The general idea is to begin with description of the participants’ studies/academic career, department and research in general, followed by discussing a research project from start to finish, including describing and interpreting results, diagrams and graphs and then move on to stating opinions and supporting them while responding to others in discussions and arguments, and finishing off with brainstorming and criticising ideas, and working with others to solve problems.

Language of instruction



Institute of Social Sciences (SPV)

Learning outcomes of the course unit

The student who completes BYA12 will have improved their speaking skills in areas relevant to an academic environment, such as discussing diagrams, data and issues, arguing, presenting opinions and solving problems.


The focus is on speaking throughout the course – the words and phrases taught will be presented and immediately practised without doing written exercises (which can be done at home, online via Moodle), so students are expected to already be able to speak relatively fluently and accurately; the BY51 (B1 / Intermediate level) exam offered by our department is required. To be more specific, students should be able to:

- communicate fluently and spontaneously with native speakers, on a regular basis if necessary, in such a way that neither party has trouble making themselves clear or understanding the other,
- use the English language with a good degree of accuracy when dealing with familiar topics and using common grammatical forms.


Not applicable.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

Not applicable.

Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes

Not applicable.

Course curriculum

Not applicable.

Work placements

Not applicable.


This course is aimed at students and academic workers who are interested in improving their spoken communication in an academic context by reviewing, learning and practicing the phrases needed while talking to other participants at conferences or on visits, discussing diagrams, research and its results, having meetings and solving problems. However, grammar and specific vocabulary will not be taught. The course is intended as a complement to the various BYA9 "Professional English" courses and to BYA11 "Writing scientific texts and contributions".

Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences

Extent and forms are specified by guarantor’s regulation updated for every academic year.

Recommended optional programme components

Not applicable.

Prerequisites and corequisites

Not applicable.

Basic literature

Not applicable.

Recommended reading

Morgan Terry, Judith Wilson: Focus on Academic Skills for IELTS. Pearson Longman, 2006. ISBN 0-582-83794-4. (EN)

Type of course unit



26 hours, compulsory

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Your academic life 2. Your academic environment 3. Numbers and data presentation 4. Graphic data: description and interpretation I 5. Graphic data: description and interpretation I 6. Research projects 7. Opinions on topics and situations 8. Building arguments 9. Discussions 10. Problem solving 11. Meetings 12. Review 13. Test