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Global Business Languages 2014/02/22 - 14:48

This article presents a research project of utilization-focused evaluation of the Business Chinese Program at the University of Hawai‘i for the purposes of ensuring the program’s quality, demonstrating the program’s values to its stakeholders, and providing the reflections associated with it. This article begins with a review of the program, and then details the evaluation processes, featuring four major phases: planning, data-collecting, analysis, and reporting. The discussion of the results of this evaluation is intended to provide a feasible model of business language program evaluation with tangible evidence of both the merits of the program and its accountability to its funders. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

As world economies become more connected, it is increasingly important to prepare students with language and cultural skills necessary to work on internationally diverse teams within the US or abroad. Since the use of language and culture for the workplace has not been a traditional focus in coursework, professional development for foreign language teachers must expand to include best practices, resources, and program models that develop globally competent citizens for twenty-first-century careers. This article describes the model created by the Florida Foreign Language Association (FFLA) and the Network of Business Language Educators (NOBLE) to infuse business language concepts, curriculum examples, and connections to local business leaders within an annual state conference. By sharing the design and implementation of this conference format, we hope to provide a professional development model that promotes the teaching and learning of language and culture skills with real-world business applications. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

Despite the need for a new generation of entrepreneurs, higher education continues to train new cadres of employees while neglecting entrepreneurship as a viable career path. In this article, the senior author (a Business French instructor and an entrepreneur) and the junior author (an International Business undergraduate) describe an entrepreneurial class project that culminated in a published book of multimedia Business French (BF) case studies. The Business French class, French 423—divided into five research teams—researched, designed, and created five case studies each in English and French. The cases, published using Articulate Storyline, included a one-page case statement, YouTube videos depicting the firm or industry, comprehension activities, and a problem to solve. The cases focused on firms representing France, Canada, and Francophone Africa. San Diego State University’s national Language Acquisition Resource Center (LARC) and Montezuma Press will publish the case studies book with students receiving co-authorship in 2014. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

Most upper-division courses taken by foreign language majors and minors in US colleges and universities involve some form of academic writing. Students who transpose this writing style to the business setting risk being unsuccessful. The purpose of this article is to highlight how these styles of writing differ so that language instructors teaching business courses in departments of modern languages can better prepare students for the needs of the twenty-first-century workplace. Our students need to be taught explicitly the differences and given an opportunity to practice the business style of writing. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

In order for MBA programs in the US to prepare Korean students for international business, an international and interactive learning environment is required. This article examines the role of the interactive lecturing style in a US MBA program in influencing the oral classroom participation of five Korean students in the program. Data for this study come from formal and informal interviews and class observations over the course of one semester. Participants were three male and two female students, enrolled in one core course: business communication. The study shows that several factors informed the Korean students’ oral participation in the classroom. Their English language proficiency, individual characteristics, Korean socio-cultural values, unfamiliar educational practices, and the classroom context were all interrelated factors. While the participants had cultural similarities with other Asian students in the class, the study also shows that there were unique Korean cultural features in play. Disregarding their length of stay in the US, a common thread among the Korean participants was that they felt it more of a challenge to speak in whole-class discussions than in small-group discussions. The findings suggest pedagogical implications for promoting oral participation of Asian international students, particularly Korean students. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

This article is situated at the nexus between critical thinking, literacy, and intercultural awareness, and its goal is to extend the curricular and methodological repertoire of business language programs and instructors. To that end, the article introduces an instructional technique for business language classes that will elevate the learners’ level of criticality toward second language texts. The approach is based on the reading comprehension strategy of self-generating questions. Instead of responding to questions raised by the instructor or the textbook, students self-generate questions vis-à-vis the assigned texts. After providing a working definition of critical literacy and an outline of previous research that relates to strategy instruction in literacy-centered foreign language education, the article will illustrate this approach and analyze the question sets that two American students generated in response to a German newspaper article on the actions of anti-consumerist advocacy groups. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

This article provides a rationale for international internships and gives concrete tips on how to develop them. It surveys works extolling the advantages of professional internships and those proving the value of study abroad. Combining these two into international internships is the focus of a growing number of programs. However, little has been said about how to develop international internships for students. The author specifically addresses France as a destination, explaining the process for obtaining visas for students wishing to make an internship in France part of their education. The author provides suggestions for making contact with French companies and with multinational companies with facilities in France. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

This article showcases “International Business in French,” a course developed at Drew University, with a special focus on ways in which students use their experience to construct knowledge of the world of business and economics in a variety of Francophone contexts. To illustrate the value experiential pedagogy can add to a business language course, it examines in particular the ways in which a trip to Quebec, the study abroad component embedded in the course, reinforces, challenges, and reveals ambiguities concerning the knowledge acquired in class prior to the trip. In conclusion, it outlines and discusses the challenges such a pedagogy might pose to the instructor and provides a provisional assessment of this approach. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

Postsecondary institutions increasingly focus their efforts on internationalization, but foreign language faculty and language and literature departments are conspicuously absent from the great majority of these discussions (Knight 2006, Gerndt 2012). The emerging field of Business Language Studies (Doyle 2012) offers an important path to participating in these decisions and thus to helping shape the discussions about developing our students’ global and intercultural competencies. The purpose of this article is twofold. On the one hand, we will show how BLS aligns with recent pedagogical trends put forth by national associations (MLA, ACTFL, AAUC), underscoring the importance of showcasing its work not only within language departments, where it is often relegated a minor status, but on campus and in the larger community where students engage in project-based and community outreach work. On the other hand, we will demonstrate how deliberate BLS programming in the study abroad context provides a model of best practices that offers important opportunities for growing the field of BLS, and more importantly, gives students unprecedented access to the business world. A new study abroad program, Duke in Montreal, provides a case study for how to implement such a program. 2014/02/22 - 14:48

This paper summarizes the field of economics of language since its inception, in order to introduce this interdisciplinary field to the foreign language academic community. The article traces the key areas in economics of language research, specifically tailoring the data available to assess the calculations of value of the Spanish language. 2014/02/22 - 14:48 2014/02/22 - 14:48 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Annie R. Abbott. Comunidades: Más allá del aula. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2009. 157 pp. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

This article explores the role that language plays in the legacy tourism business, an increasingly important sub-segment of the tourism industry. While seemingly obvious that those traveling to the land of their ancestors may request language help from migration institutions, past research has never asked representatives of migration institutions what help legacy tourists need. Delegates at a recent meeting of the Association of European Migration Institutions participated in a survey about what they perceive to be the most important language needs of their patrons. Most indicated that while some nations, such as Scotland, emphasize that tourists should come learn the language of their ancestors, perhaps most language help by the migration institutions is fairly simple, such as explaining what a surname means. Motivations for interest in family history are also reported, with staff at migration institutions providing comparisons of their perceptions with those motivations reported by real legacy tourists. Norwegian-Americans serve as the ethnicity of emphasis in this paper because of the identifiable nature of Norway as an ancestral homeland in contrast to other ethnicities without a homeland with clear borders. Specific language marketing suggestions are provided for those who are associated with migration institutions and similar entities. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

It is widely recognized that authentic materials such as advertisements are beneficial to language learners. In addition to stimulating students’ interest and motivation, advertising in the target language exposes students to different styles of expression and offers a window into another culture. This article proposes a more comprehensive approach to integrating commercial advertisements into the foreign language classroom through content-based learning. In an effort to develop its international business curriculum, California State University, San Bernardino has added Introduction to French Advertising to its already strong business course options in French. This article describes the course in detail, including topics of discussion, collaborative activities for the classroom, and the use of interactive Web technologies to build critical reflection skills needed for lifelong learning. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

US higher education has focused on the development of new cadres of employees to the near exclusion of entrepreneurship as a career path. In this article, the authors describe an entrepreneurial approach to the teaching of Business French. The senior author served as the course instructor while the junior author was a student who completed the course. To provide an entry into the world of global entrepreneurship, the senior author selected the French translation of Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad. In parallel with the reading of Rich Dad, students completed a series of entrepreneurial course activities. Selected activities are described from the perspectives of both authors. The article ends with students’ feelings about (1) entrepreneurship, (2) future career plans, (3) the theme of the course, and (4) the use of Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Genre studies on intercultural aspects of business languages traditionally focus on established genres, such as print advertisements or annual reports. Despite the growing importance of Web-based business communication, only a few publications have engaged in contrastive Web genre analysis. This article develops a methodology for carrying out cross-cultural research on Web genres by giving ideas for designing a corpus and for choosing parameters of analysis. It also discusses the potential benefits of intercultural Web genre approaches for researchers, students, and business professionals. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

This study demonstrates that inter-cultural negotiators, one of whom is a bi-cultural American well-versed in the other’s culture, realized similar joint gains to intra-cultural Korean negotiators. The conclusion of this study is that bi-culturals, who are aware of the cultural difference and social distance, were able to close social distance and produce joint gains that were similar to the result of intra-cultural negotiation. This study also emphasizes the development of pedagogical methods to increase KFL (Korean as a foreign language) learners’ inter-cultural awareness and overcome cultural prejudices, so that they can foster cultural and linguistic competence in inter-cultural business negotiations. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Existing international business with language concentration curriculum research indicates that little is known about perceptions of current international executives who are working in multinational corporations. This article investigates an American international executive’s perceptions of language and cultural barriers in multiple multinational corporations in China. The researcher’s seven-year period of contact with the business executive from 2003 to 2010 led to the collection of multiple data sources through businessactivity protocol questionnaires and in-depth interviews. The international executive’s perceptions suggest that the international business curriculum development was in the following three areas: (1) language competency, (2) multicultural awareness, and (3) global awareness. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Despite the obvious importance of speaking skills, for technology and other reasons, it is difficult for foreign language instructors to provide ample speaking practice opportunities to students. However, particularly in business language teaching, speaking is crucial. To address this problem, the authors have created an oral program for a Business Chinese textbook on an online platform called Speak Everywhere. This article discusses general oral training issues and reports on the design of the oral program. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

This article explores the use of intercultural management cases as alternative instructional materials in business language courses. These cases use the power of story to teach about successful global leaders who effectively lead across cultures. As the cases engage and inform business language students, they also serve as a valuable resource for teaching language, communication, and culture. Additionally, the cases develop situation analysis and problemsolving skills. Three prominent CEOs serve as examples of intercultural management case subjects for the business language class: Jack Ma of China’s Alibaba, Carlos Ghosn of France and Japan’s Renault-Nissan Alliance, and Ratan Tata of India’s Tata Group. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim Helú has been a fixture on Forbes’s list of billionaires since 1991, and for the past three years, he has topped the magazine’s list of the world’s richest men. Although he is exceptionally well-known in his native Mexico, the majority of American college students have never heard of Carlos Slim. This article presents a curricular module built around this charismatic and controversial figure. The module requires students to navigate Internet-supported news media in the target language (Spanish), and engages them in independent, small-group, and larger, teacher-led activities designed to foster critical and comparative skills in cultural competency and analysis through process-based, student-led inquiry. Pedagogically and methodologically, the author engages with the recommendations and conclusions of recent studies by ACTFL and MLA committees, as well as by other leading scholars, regarding both the use of technology in the classroom and the idea of “teaching culture.” The unit’s content significantly deepens and enriches students’ understanding of social, economic, and political issues in modern Mexico. The article carefully situates each stage and aspect of the curricular unit presented in relation to recent studies of constructivism in foreign language acquisition and on the hierarchy of Bloom’s taxonomy of learning objectives. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

In this article, we will first review various perspectives on the teaching of culture and what effect this can have on intercultural interaction in language teaching. We then take a look at ways of using culture to teach a foreign language. The first example is how preparing to write a German Lebenslauf can serve as a means to get to know and better understand fellow classmates. In addition, we look at how preparing for a mock job interview can function as the basis for teaching German. Finally, we see that students appreciate and value the use of culture in the teaching of Business German. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Spanish for Business classes have increased substantially in the last 30 years in American higher education. Lived experiences in another country are a necessary part of any research conducted to teach cultural aspects of any society. As instructors of these classes, we cannot rely entirely on the information provided by official government Web sites. Mexico is not the exception, and instructors should travel to this country to gain the lived experience that provides first-hand knowledge of the country’s business cultural practices. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

Situated within the growing body of work on languages for specific purposes and community service-learning, this article explores the place of specific professional skills in the business language curriculum. It argues that the integration of explicit curricular content related to professional correspondence (emails, letter of recommendation requests, and cover letter content) will better prepare students for the work place without compromising the rigor of the traditional humanities disciplines. 2013/02/21 - 08:01

As English emerges as the lingua franca of many international corporations worldwide, academic institutions are erroneously retracting funds from language-learning programs, citing the lack of need or the inability to support nonessentials. With this approach, the true needs of language learners have been neglected. The blame can easily be placed on institutions that misunderstand the additional benefits learners garner while pursuing language studies (i.e., culture). However, it can be argued that the blame is actually that of the language educators who fail to arm themselves with the proper ammunition to argue their side properly. The administrators who decide the fate of language programs often remain uninformed about the reality of foreign language curricula. Language programs that focus on specialized purposes (LSP) can prepare students linguistically and culturally, as well as complement their education in content areas such as business and the sciences. A curriculum shift that encompasses important language and cultural nuances found in traditional classrooms, but also includes topics relating to the professional world outside of academia, is essential. Courses in LSP provide learners with a global perspective and language skills that surpass the qualifications of their monolingual counterparts. Funds and support will continue to be stripped from language programs across the US unless language instructors can demonstrate that language learning is not an isolated discipline, but rather part of a merging of complementary fields. 2013/02/21 - 08:01 2013/02/21 - 08:01

In this article we present a brief case study entitled “Breathe Pure Chile” that illustrates some of the cultural issues that come up in international professional settings. The company exports fruits from Chile and uses new technologies to preserve the foods longer. More importantly, this case offers insights into the interaction between North American and Latin American professionals. The story is based on actual interviews that were conducted with employees of the company in Santiago, Chile; however, the names of the people and the company have been modifi ed. In order to analyze the various cultural issues, the contents of the case are reviewed using three different models of business communication: Victor’s LESCANT model; Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions; and Hampden-Turner and Trompenaars’s Cultural Dilemmas. Finally, this article also looks at analysis and comments that university students have made as they review the content of the case study. The pedagogical implication is that students are better able to analyze and interpret the cultural aspects of a case scenario when they have access to some model or framework to work from. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

At the lower and intermediate-levels of language instruction, students do not have sufficient language proficiency to inform themselves about current events in the target language. Knowledge of current events is an important part of cultural competence and should not be absent from instruction because of linguistic restrictions. This article proposes to remedy this problem, by creating out-of-class reading assignments of current events articles from US and international English language news sources. The article provides practical information on selection criteria for articles, suggests news sources, and gives examples of assignments. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

Retention of engineering students is a national and international concern, since a globalizing world needs ever more culturally competent and technically adept graduates to fulfill the work force demands of companies operating globally. The data on retention of engineering students agrees that the freshman year is of critical importance; we fi nd that only about 40 to 50% of the students graduate with an engineering degree. The International Engineering Program (IEP) organizes a 10 to 14-day German Study Tour during January break, which is an effective retention tool for students enrolled in The University of Rhode Island’s demanding five-year dual degree German IEP program, working toward a BS in an engineering discipline, and a BA in German. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

In today’s foreign language curriculum, translation exercises (once a staple of language instruction) have been neglected, if not completely dropped. However, German employers who hire American interns expect them to regularly translate business correspondence or even interpret for visitors. In this article I make a case for reincorporating translation training into the business language curriculum and offer suggestions and examples on how to enhance lesson plans with effective exercises. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

The article examines a module developed over the past 20 years at a French management school to show how culturally based learning activities in the foreign language classroom can improve the school’s management training curriculum. Through debates, role plays, and discussions, the module improves students’ communicative skills and enhances their comprehension of self and others. The assignments aid students in making sense of unfamiliar contexts. By developing cultural awareness in addition to linguistic fluency, the class contributes to the school’s mission to train future business professionals to become open-minded and thereby to operate more effectively in today’s global business environment. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

This article reports the findings of a survey conducted among business professionals who have either worked in China or are US based and have relationships with Chinese companies. The intention is to discover what business culture differences they perceive between the US and China and how they cope with the language and cultural challenges. As a result, Chinese language instructors can then understand business students’ needs better and thus teach more effectively by incorporating the findings into the Chinese business language curricula. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

The acquisition of pragmatic competence in the workplace is the ultimate goal for business Chinese learners. Whether the business Chinese textbooks and instructional materials can meet the language needs of different workplaces in China has a close bearing on the quality and efficacy of business Chinese teaching. Funded by both the interdisciplinary research grant from the University of Hawai‘i Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), and the Business Language Research and Teaching grant from twelve US CIBERs, this study will present an endeavor to fi ll the gap between the actual needs of the stakeholders and the current status of business Chinese textbooks in the market. Two major parts of this study include (1) a needs analysis with triangulated sources and methods that would increase the reliability and validity of the interpretation of data (Long, 2005), and (2) an analysis of the panoply of teaching materials in light of current pedagogic theories with a particular focus on pragmatics and content. Recommendations from this study may provide reliable guidelines for business Chinese curricula intended for helping students of business Chinese acquire the tools to communicate successfully. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

As we go to press, Greece is poised on the brink, yet again it seems, of defaulting on its massive debt, with predictions and fears of local, regional, and perhaps ultimately global dire consequences. The interconnectedness of economies around the globe has come into sharp focus as the prospects of financial crisis, perhaps even collapse, in the eurozone threatens to drag down the weak economic recovery in the United States, and adversely affect Asian economic stability. The past few years have shown all too clearly that globalization has a very real downside. Yet we hope to avoid a major crisis, maintain our struggling economies, and grow to greater prosperity through globalization as well. Isolationism is not an option. International fi nancial soundness and increased global trade are a large part of the solution. Business partners need to understand each other’s business practices, and also the indigenous languages and cultures of the business community around the world. That is simply good business, and the stakes have never been so high. Again this year, we are pleased to present articles that examine a great variety of topics and cultures, reflecting the global connections of business and the business languages that support international commerce. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

It has become increasingly more critical for business students to be fluent in foreign languages and knowledgeable of foreign cultures. There is more to teaching a foreign language to a business student than teaching vocabulary and grammar. In order to prepare students to be successful businesspersons in the target geographic area, we must also introduce them to such topics as the local culture, local economic conditions, and local business ethics. In this article, I discuss my experience at Lauder with the Arabic language and culture program, by discussing in turn its requirements, premises, and lessons learned. 2012/03/24 - 12:50

Professor Christiane Keck, Professor Emerita of German and former Head of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures [as of January 1, 2012, the School of Languages and Cultures] at Purdue University, provided the driving force for the creation of Global Business Languages in the mid-1990s. From its beginning in 1996 she served as Editor of the journal, and although she retired from the university in 2002, she continued her editorship until 2010. Last year when she announced she would be leaving the journal, it was too late for us in our production schedule to offer more than brief thanks for her long service and devotion to business German, business languages in general, and the journal. In this Tribute, several of her colleagues share their thoughts upon her departure from the journal. 2012/03/24 - 12:50