Global English online – a case study of a distance learning course in a business context
The Open University in the UK, which has been providing distance education across the UK and continental Europe for the last 40 years, has recently started to develop an international strategy. New media allow for the creation of virtual learning spaces where students can learn from each other via the stimulus of materials from which they can draw according to their own perception of their needs. The challenge is to create materials appropriate for the range of possible contexts. This paper seeks to explore the reaction of students to one such course in relation to the concept of lingua franca English (LFE), which is essentially pragmatic, developing within a particular context, for a particular purpose and negotiated by those using it in that context.
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