Hatchinson and Waters (1987) asserted that “ESP should properly be seen not as any particular
1300 WordsApr 23, 20196 Pages
Hatchinson and Waters (1987) asserted that “ESP should properly be seen not as any particular language product but as an approach to language teaching which is directed by specific and apparent reasons for learning” (p. 19). In addition, “it is an approach to language learning which is based on learner need. The foundation of all ESP is a simple question: Why does this leaner need to learn a foreign language?” (Hatchinson & Waters, 1987, p. 19).
Strevens (as cited in Dudley Evans & St. John, 1998) differentiates between four absolute characteristics and two variable characteristics of ESP. Strevens state that the absolute characteristics are designed to meet specified needs of the learner; are elated in content (that is, in its theme and…show more content…
Robinson (1991) emphasized that needs analysis is a primary step in defining ESP. Two key defining criteria and a number of characteristics are the basics of her definition that are broadly true about ESP. The criteria are that ESP is ‘normally goal-directed’, and that ESP courses develop from a needs analysis, which “aims to specify as closely as possible what exactly it is that students have to do through the medium of English” (Robinson 1991, p. 3). ESP courses are felt to be constrained by a limited time period in which their goals must be achieved and thought to adults that are in homogeneous classes as the work or studies that the students should be involved in.Strevens (as cited in Ounis, 2005) states that specific purposes in language teaching can be found in basically two forms: the traveler's language course which goes back to the 16th century and the German for science students' type of course. He also notes that the Second World War engendered the need for specialist language courses where students only needed a very limited competence in a language in order to fulfill de-limited tasks.
2.2.2. Post-war ESP
Despite the long history, as Strevens (1977) points out, it is probably safe to claim that the ESP movement is firmly placed in the second half of the 20th century and, as the millennium has now turned, no doubt, beyond it. The rise of ESP can, perhaps, be seen as a result of two separate