What is British for Specific Purposes (ESP)? Why ESP? Those are some typically common questions that are often arise whenever we talk about the area of English terms. We undoubtedly aware about British learning purposes for example, the main language of literature, international airports, international business, academic conferences and in simple fact over two thirds of the literature available on earth are in English (Crystal, 1999). Consequently 80% of all information in the world’s retrieval system is stored in English. We typically know that the most typical area of English is General British (GE) or English for Basic Purposes (EGP) but a lot of people don’t have a idea of what ESP is. In fact they don’t even understand that the word exist in English language. If you can spend a few minutes and try to focus about British in a wider perspective, you will start to realize that British is used just about everywhere! We have a tendency to think that British is only needed by linguists, grammarian and those who are in the British linguistics field however, the simple truth is English is significantly used in virtually all profession. For instance, medical students need British for his or her Medical training and even pilots need British for his or her aviation lessons. Therefore, British for Medical Purposes and British for Aviation were founded to suit those specific needs. Regarding to Crystal (1999), English for Specific Purposes (ESP) can be simplified as the utilization of a particular variety of the terms in a specific context useful. Furthermore, Robinson (1991) has talked about ESP as a ‘terminology in context’ and the classes are designed based on the learners’ communicative needs (Munby, 1978). Robinson (1991) in addition has stated that:
“ESP training are those where in fact the syllabus and materials are decided in all essentials by the prior evaluation of communicative needs of the context. ” Robinson (1991: 20)
To have a greater understanding about English for Specific Purposes (ESP), I’ll discuss the chronological development of British and through this basis then we are able to trace the annals and development of ESP as a field of dialect.
To start with I am going to talk about the introduction of English, particularly British as an international language. Whenever a language is called the lingua franca, we evidently know that it’s a language that is widely used as a way of communication among speakers of other dialects. The acknowledgement of British words as the lingua franca of all activity in the international setting has been generally accepted (Crystal, 1997) and it is not a surprising phenomenon that a lot of people learn British just to talk to English speaking people. In the age of globalization, folks have now realized the importance of English and the need to master the British language therefore the role British has expanded immensely. This is seen in the utilization of British at a higher degree of education just as ‘specialized section of research and scholarship’ (Faiz, 2010) and the most noticeable proof is seen in the number of English speakers. Estimates of the numbers of English speaker systems are difficult to make however, regarding to Summer Institute for Linguistics (SIL) Ethnologue Review (1999), the numbers of English native audio speakers are roughly 330 million that has shown the substantiation that English is thoroughly used around the globe.
According to Hutchinson and Waters (1987), ESP had not been a ‘designed and coherent movements’ but it offers emerged because of numerous unified trends predicated on notably three significant reasons which have been determined in the introduction of ESP: the requirements of a Daring ” NEW WORLD “, a trend in linguistics, and concentrate on the learner. Hutchinson and Waters (1987) have emphasized two key historical durations that gave life into ESP. In 1945, it was the end of the Second World War which had helped bring with it an “. . . era of enormous and unprecedented expansion in scientific, specialized and monetary activity on an international scale” that was then had given rise to the creation of two pushes: technology and commerce world which in turn had initiated a ‘demand for an international language’. Because of the importance of technology and commerce in this period, the demand for English to match those needs experienced vastly expanded and folks now learn English because of very specific reason: because English had become the words of technology and commerce. Long time earlier, the training of British (or other dialect) was never this lucid. People used to ponder why it is essential to learn a dialect, now that English got become so powerful and influential; corporate people used English to market their product globally, technicians who got to use English to read the manuals, researchers who needed British to have the ability to read books and journals in English for his or her research. Because British was crucially imperative, it acquired created a whole new kind of learners who indeed realize why they need British for plus they surely know how to strike while the flat iron is hot. In addition, the Oil Crisis of the early 1970s was one of the factors that added to the development. English had all of the sudden become a large business and due to this it got created money and time constraints that lead to ‘the need of cost effective courses which evidently defined goals’. English has become ‘subject matter to the needs, needs and demands of people other than language professors’ (Hutchinson & Waters, 1987, p. 7).
Another factor that plays a part in the emergence of ESP is a revolution in linguistics. In this era of your time, the requirements of English programs for specific need were increasing while at the same time new ideas started out to take place in neuro-scientific research (Hutchinson & Waters, 1987). The traditional linguists sought to spell it out the features of language (sentence structure), whereas the radical pioneer in linguistics put a focus on the ways in which language is used in real communication (Widdowson, 1978). The outcome of the study was that terms, whether it’s spoken or written, varies using ways and contexts. In another words, the language use will varies in given the particular context where English is used, the variant of English will change. This idea was considered one step farther. If language in different situations varies, then it is possible to tailor language training to meet up with the needs of learners in specific contexts. Hence, there was an huge increase of in the later 1960s and the first 1970s in researching particular areas of English even as can easily see in the efforts of describing British for Technology and Technology (EST) by Ewer and Latorre (1969), Swales (1971), Selinker and Trimble (1976) and many more. In this period, it can be concluded that by examining the linguistic characteristics of the precise area of analysis or work, we would have the ability to identify the British needed by a particular band of learners.
The other reason that causes the origin of ESP is the focus on the learner, which in this case in the region of psychology. The introduction of educational psychology has contributed to the emergence of ESP by focusing on the learners and their learning behaviour. It was clear that different learners have different needs and interests that will then affect their learning drive and the potency of learning. In other words, learners were seen to hire different learning strategies, apply different skills, produce different learning schemata, and those things were determined by different needs and pursuits. As a result, concentrate on the learners’ needs and hobbies were of paramount importance to the techniques hired to disseminate linguistic knowledge that will then donate to the better and faster learning. The thought of designing specific programs to meet these specific needs was a remarkable yet effective thought. It is observed that ESL is learner-centered or learning-centered as one of its main concentration is on the learner. Succinctly, the progression of ESP was resulted in the mixture of three factors that have been mentioned above and everything the three factors seemed to aim towards a solitary point: the necessity for increased specialty area in language learning (Hutchinson & Waters, 1987).
Let us make contact with the questions asked at the beginning: What’s ESP and why ESP? Though it has been discussed at the beginning, the need of additional information regarding ESP is still needed in order to have a much better understanding towards this subject matter. It really is quite apparent that the learners of British as a Second/ SPANISH are quite numerous than some other language however quite a number of them don’t realize why the need to learn it. Knowing the fact that English is an important world terminology, this desire drive those to learn English and besides that some research English because they are forced to take action as it is a compulsory subject matter at university or even in the college or university. Taking Malaysia as the nearest and obvious example, English terminology has been made essential because the starting of major school, which is Standard One. In fact some kindergartens in Malaysia have began to teach British compulsorily with their kids from the beginning of institution life whether the kids like it or not. On the other hand there are also quite a number of learners of English who learn British because of specific reasons. For instance, one would need the knowledge of English in order to survive socially and skillfully in an British speaking community. Therefore, the guiding principle proposed for ESP by Hutchinson and Waters (1987: 8) “Tell me what you need British for and I will let you know what English you will need” is exactly true to its so this means within the ESP context. I am absolutely agreed to their saying because we can only give what they (learners) want by knowing what they want.
I have previously explained about the definition of ESP in a simple way, nevertheless the extended definition of ESP is essential so a more reflective in neuro-scientific analysis and practice and it’ll also be useful to distinguish it with Basic English or British Language Teaching (ELT). There are some views and positions of ESP that people can look further. Some authors (Streven, 1988; Dudley-Evans and St. John, 1998) tend to classify the characteristics of ESP into 2 teams: complete and variable. Utter characteristics of ESP would be to meet specific needs of the learners and makes use of underlying methodology and activities of the self-control it provides. ESP is also centered on the vocabulary appropriate to these activities in terms of sentence structure, lexis, register, review skills discourse and genre. The varying characteristics of ESP may be related to or created for specific purposes and another type of methodology from basic English can be used because most ESP lessons assume some routine knowledge of the terminology systems which is different with general British whereby most learners begins from zero knowledge of the terms. Strevens’ (1988) meaning makes a difference between four total and two changing characteristics. In his action, he says that ESP contains English language teaching that comprises definite characteristics, that are:
designed to meet specified needs of the learner;
related in content (i. e. in its topics and issues) to particular disciplines, occupations and activities centred on the language appropriate to people activities in syntax, lexis, discourse, semantics, etc. , and evaluation of this discourse; and
in contrast with General English.
Besides that, there’s also varying characteristics of ESP as ESP may be, but is definitely not restricted regarding the vocabulary skills to be learned (e. g. reading only); which is not taught relating to any pre-ordained methodology. Dudley-Evans and St. John (1998) have offered a altered description of ESP by summing up their position in a two categories like Strevens (1988). Their revised position is as follows:
ESP is defined to meet specific needs of the learner;
ESP makes use of the underlying technique and activities of the self-discipline it serves;
ESP is centred on the dialect (grammar, lexis, register), skills, discourse and genres appropriate to these activities.
ESP may be related to or designed for specific disciplines;
ESP might use, in specific educating situations, an alternative methodology from that of general English;
ESP is likely to be created for adult learners, either at a tertiary level institution or in a professional work situation. It might, however, be for learners at secondary institution level;
ESP is generally made for intermediate or advanced students. Most ESP classes assume some basic knowledge of the terminology system, but it could be used with beginners (1998, pp. 4-5).
In their motion, Dudley-Evans and St. John (1998) have removed the total feature that ‘ESP is on the other hand with General British’ and added more changing characteristics. They have asserted that ESP is not necessarily related to a particular self-discipline. Furthermore, ESP is likely to be used with adult learners although it could be used with young adults in a second school setting. Regarding to Karklina (2002), she argued that what distinguishes ESP from General English is not the lifestyle of a need so but rather an awareness of the need. She also added that if learners, sponsors and educators know why the learners need British, that awareness will influence on exactly what will be accepted as realistic content in the dialect course and, on the other hand, what probable can be exploited. Thus, although it might show up on the surface that the ESP course is seen as a its content (Research, Medicine, Commerce, Travel and leisure, etc. ), this is, in truth only a secondary consequence of the primary matter of being able to identify why the learners need British (Hutchinson and Waters, 1987).
We have now explored English for Specific Purposes (ESP) comprehensively and thoroughly beginning with its history and development and we’ve had better understandings towards this area of English. We’re able to say that British for Specific Purposes has developed from the need to provide specific training for students who had to learn English more as a way to an end rather than with regard to learning British itself. In cases like this ESP is based basically on the goals and requirements that students have because when students have little if any basic knowledge in English, then instructing it for a specific purpose would be almost impossible. Overall, ESP can be simply deduced as the utilization of specific variety of English in a specific context to meet specific needs of the learner. The guiding process suggested for ESP by Hutchinson and Waters (1987: 8) “Tell me what you need English for and I will let you know what English you need” is at perfect accord with these statement combined with the background and development of ESP. Based on the history and development of ESP talked about above, we can easily see that the learners’ needs of British play an important role in producing and designing the training materials to fulfill their specific needs.