Главная страница «Первого сентября»Главная страница журнала «Английский язык»Содержание №18/2009

Презентация научных проектов на английском языке

Данный курс, ориентированный на практику англоязычного академического общения, содержит большое количество тематически организованных речевых оборотов, характерных для современного научного дискурса, и тренировочных заданий, нацеленных на развитие навыков научного письма и устной презентации. Он предназначен для студентов старших курсов, занимающихся написанием проектов на английском языке, аспирантов и научных работников, которым потребуется представить результаты своих исследований англоговорящей аудитории в устной форме – на международных конференциях или письменно – при подготовке материалов к публикации в зарубежном издании. Имеющийся учебный материал может быть также полезен при обучении написанию любого научного текста.



SECTION I. Written presentations

Introductory comments. Writing an academic text

Part I. The main body

Unit 1. The literature review: positive comments

Unit 2. The literature review: the theoretical and empirical parts

Unit 3. The literature review: critical evaluation

Unit 4. Methodology

Unit 5. The results anticipated

Part II. Introductions and Conclusions

Unit 6. Introduction: the background of the study

Unit 7. Introduction: the problem statement and scope of the study

Unit 8. Introduction: the professional significance of the study

Unit 9. Conclusions

Unit 10. Abstracts

SECTION II. Debates and oral presentations

Introductory comments. Preparing an oral presentation

Unit 11. Dealing with terminology and defining key concepts

Unit 12. Handling arguments and examples

Unit 13. Stages of an oral presentation: opening and closing

Unit 14. Stages of an oral presentation: feedforward and feedback

Unit 15. Handling questions: previewers, disclaimers and time fillers


Appendix 1. The list of possible opening phrases

Appendix 2. Tasks for translation

Appendix 3. Time fillers

Appendix 4. Criteria for assessing written presentations

Appendix 5. Criteria for assessing oral presentations

Appendix 6. References

Appendix 7. Punctuation

Appendix 8. Some examples of project proposals

Appendix 9. Lexical minimum

Appendix 10. Glossary of lexical units frequent in academic discourse


Julia Kuzmenkova has addressed a key problem in academic writing for students interested in acquiring professional English language competencies. The textbook «Academic Project Presentations» provides an internationally accepted framework for reporting on original scientific research that has been lacking in the Russian academy. Professor Kuzmenkova has provided a step-by-step method for students to complete their academic projects on time and in the proper format for publication in international format. The format of the textbook walks student through the research process providing guidance on topic selection, description of the project proposal, describing limitations of the study, writing a literature review, and selecting and reporting on methodology.

This work draws on the established international practices in social sciences and provides a best practice overview on how to write an academic paper. One advantage of her work is that it illuminates common mistakes and provides guidance on how Russian speakers can write in English.

There are significant differences in Russian and International English academic writing and Ms. Kuzmenkova has provided example texts to bridge these differences and help the Russian speaker be understood in English.

I recommend my students review her work prior to starting their diploma papers, theses, or dissertations since there is real value in starting your paper on the right basis. I would recommend that all Russian speakers use her text as a reference in preparing papers in International English for presentations at conference or submissions to journals.

Alexander Settles, Ph.D.
Professor, State University – Higher School of Economics Formerly
at the University of Delaware, USA and York University, Canada


The course is intended for undergraduate students involved in writing academic projects to be presented by the end of their final year. It can also be useful for post-graduates working on candidate dissertations who need to discuss the results of their research work in English – orally, at international conferences, or in writing – getting materials ready to be published. The course focuses largely on developing skills of academic writing and oral presentation – though the materials presented in this book can be used for writing any type of an academic text.

Academic writing skills acquisition is based on studying quite a number of lexical units, their frequency of use in recent academic publications being the key criterion for selection. Those units are to make a bulk of active vocabulary, and different types of work are also aimed at developing language awareness. Another important aspect of enlarging students’ vocabulary and developing writing skills is connected with peculiarities of academic style. To illustrate those features various clichéd expressions are introduced – to be further practiced. Those clichés are grouped thematically in blocks – merely for convenience (the classification is to a certain extent arbitrary – and the material is rather flexible).

It should also be mentioned in this connection that although all the units were picked out from the articles published in British magazines over the last decade, they should be approached carefully and selectively. The mere fact that those expressions were used by recognised scholars does not guarantee their high frequency; moreover, the language is in the state of constant developing – and some lexical units might come out of use and be replaced by more popular ones. Hence, the main emphasis should be laid on studying the patterns and varying the appropriate words that could fit into them. To master academic style different tasks are offered to practice in the classroom; individual further activities are based on the ability to work with the Internet or library sources – to verify the information gathered.

It is necessary to state here that skills of oral presentation can by no means be reduced to the ability to ‘retell’ or to read from the notes the contents of the written project. Most important features of oral presentation (some of them are specifically British, or common for the English speaking cultures and not so familiar for others) are dealt with in detail in the final part of the course. The issues of handling and avoiding questions, handling arguments and explaining terminology are also discussed and different strategies are offered and practiced.

Thus, the course is divided into two sections – with respect to the skills to be developed, special attention being also paid to structural elements (the main body, introduction and conclusion). The units in Section I are ordered along actual lines of project preparation (appropriately explained below). Each unit starts with Warming up activities (dealing with collocations, derivatives, contextual synonyms etc.) – to get you ‘tuned in’ to further vocabulary work (on clichéd expressions, finding equivalents, matching etc.) in Language focus. Finally, for consolidation and further practice units contain Extension activities (largely based on rendering and independent writing or speaking). There are also Appendices offering some additional useful information, tests and tasks, criteria for assessing presentations and examples of project proposals to be evaluated.

Commonly, the work on an academic project begins by intensive reading and when a frame of the future research has emerged and taken a definite shape you turn to writing Introduction and Conclusion. Thus, the units in the book are ordered with respect to this routine procedure – starting by the literature review. At the proposal stage some attempts should be made to review the literature. Despite the fact that – obviously – so early on you cannot have read everything on the subject, you should be able to select a list of working bibliography (at least some recent articles covering the main issues of the topic area or fundamental sources relevant in terms of theory, practice and current issues) to be further summarised. You then proceed by gradually introducing and mastering the necessary details of further investigation arriving finally at writing the abstract.

However, if you are a competent English language user capable of working independently, or you need only some fragments of the information offered for a particular purpose – to check or consolidate what has already been written, any unit of the book could serve as a starting point. The flexible modular principle of structural organisation makes for the units’ autonomy and facilitates the work. It is hoped that the materials the book contains will provide a solid basis for writing and presenting academic projects.

You can refer to the author by e-mail: kuzmen@mail333.com; eelkina@hse.ru.

Ю. Б. Кузьменкова