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Promoting the take-up of languages and student mobility

GCSE, AS and A2 Revision Days 27,28,29th March 2012

Yorkshire and the Humber

Over 230 secondary pupils and A-Level students from all over Yorkshire and the Humber descended on the Modern Languages Department at the University of Hull to take part in GCSE and AS/A2 level revision session on 27th, 28th and 29th March 2012.

The event, organised by Routes into Languages, included sessions in French, German and Spanish.

Claire Barber, Project Manager of Routes into Languages Yorkshire and the Humber, welcomed students and then it was straight on to the vital aim of the day – to revise as much of the target language as possible on key topics in preparation for the final exams in May and June this year.

Students were divided into groups and went into language sessions with a university tutor and Student Ambassadors. There were 12 ambassadors on hand each day to help the pupils and students in their revision sessions and interacted well with them. The ambassadors were international – a vital mixture of native German, French, Spanish and also 4th year English students. Mary in Year 11 said of the ambassadors: “I loved talking to the Ambassadors that study different languages and the people who came from Italy, Spain, France and Germany. They were so lovely and fun to talk to.”

During the lunch break pupils were shown the campus, including the Student Union, library and the Language Learning Centre by the Student Ambassadors and provided a good opportunity for the pupils to get a better feel for the University and campus life. In the afternoon there were further revision sessions in the three languages and these were taken up with vigour.

Comments by pupils and teachers at the end of the day were extremely enthusiastic and many expressed the hope that there would be further sessions of this type. After the events, one teacher said: “I just wanted to let you know how positive the feedback was from our AS and A level students... All students felt that they learnt something from the day and were pleased to be given the opportunity to express themselves orally.”

The students were equally enthusiastic about the revision sessions. Of the AS day one pupil said: “I enjoyed talking to new people and lecturers/teachers. I feel that the day was a great success.” Another pupil on the A2 day commented: “The teachers were very helpful and welcoming. I liked that they made us speak a lot during the day as it will help as practise for my oral exam.” Some GCSE pupils were so impressed that they are now thinking of taking A Level French: “I really enjoyed the event and it persuaded me to take A Level French next year.” A great result!