1) What does “Oxbridge” stand for?
2) Are the colleges of Oxford and Cambridge residential institutions?
3) What does a “tutorial method” mean?
4) What can you say about sport and social life at English colleges?
Read the dialogue and say what new information about higher education in Britain you have learnt.
Ann: Hello, Steve! Have you got a minute?
Steve: Sure, yes. What can I do for you?
Ann: I’ve read a number of books on the British system of higher education, but I can’t make head or tail of it.
Steve: Mm…no wonder. What’s the problem?
Ann: Quite a lot of problems. What I want to discuss is the difference between a university and a college.
Steve: It’s like this, you see… The program is different. At university it is much wider. Great attention is paid to scientific subjects.
Ann: It sounds as though most people prefer a university.
Steve: Well... that rather depends.
Ann: Speaking about universities it is not quite clear about tutorials there. What is a tutorial exactly?
Steve: Oh, it is when students discuss topics with a tutor in very small groups – usually there are not more than 3 or 4 students and sometimes only one.
Ann: I see… And coming back to colleges…I’m still not terribly sure what a residential college is…
Steve: Erm… It’s a college with a hall of residence on the same grounds as the principal building. In fact all the students live in hall.
Ann: Really? And what about the teaching staff?
Steve: Actually the majority of the teaching staff live there too. But there are also quite a lot of non – residential colleges.
Ann: And you studied at university?
Ann: I’d like to find myself in that university. What was it like?
Steve: Well… a big grey building surrounded by trees.
Steve: Nothing very remarkable. Of course, there were lecture halls, classrooms and a number or laboratories.
Ann: Any facilities for sport and PE?
Steve: Let me see... Yes… A gymnasium with changing rooms and showers, tennis courts… what else , playing fields for netball and football…
Ann: I believe students spend a lot of time together, don’t they?
Steve: Definitely. We had students’ societies and clubs.
Ann: Am I right to believe that they are for those interested in drama and music?
Steve: Quite …and also politics, modern languages, literature, science and athletics.
Ann: Ah… that’s worth knowing.
Steve: And what I’d like to add is that students themselves organize all those clubs and societies. There is usually a Students’ Council or Union.
Ann: Well, Steve. Thanks very much. You’ve been most helpful.
Work with a partner or in groups of 3-4. Discuss the following:
1) A Russian and an English student are exchanging information on the variety of higher educational institutions in their countries.
2) Two students of the Academy are discussing their life. One of them is enthusiastic about everything, the other is disatisfied grumbler and finds fault with every little thing.
3) A student is speaking with a friend of his/hers about the programme and the course of study.
4) The difference between the systems of higher education in Britain and Russia.
5) Exchange information on social life of the students in your higher school, on sport and amateur activity.
6) Speak on what you think may surprise a Russian student at an English University:
b) teaching methods:
c) students’ extra-curricular activities.
Use these prompts expressing your opinion :
I think / suppose / guess / believe
Well, my opinion is that
I wouldn’t say that
On the one hand / on the other hand
If I’m not mistaken
If my memory doesn’t fail me
As far as I know
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