Professional Development Certificate in English‑Medium Instruction (PDC‑EMI)


What is English-Medium Instruction (EMI)?

An increasing number of universities and post-secondary institutions outside English-dominant countries deliver courses and degree programs via the English language. If English is not the dominant language in the country and/or is not the first language of most students and instructors, this is referred to as an English Medium of Instruction context.

For successful teaching and learning of university course material via English, teaching methodologies and assessment practices have to be adapted to account for both content and language. Importantly, teaching in an EMI context is not simply about translating lecture notes and assigning an English-language version of the marketing, engineering or history textbook that has always been used in that class.

The CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) Approach

CLIL is an approach to teaching content via a language that is not the students’ mother tongue. Language and the subject matter being taught become integrated, and the student learns the language along with the content. Language is used to learn, rather than simply being for communication. CLIL practitioners focus on five dimensions - content, comprehension, critical thinking, communication and culture. These dimensions govern the way course curriculum is designed, classes are taught, and students are assessed.

The Professional Development Certificate in English-Medium Instruction (PDC-EMI)

The objective of the PDCEMI is to improve teaching and learning in an EMI context via developing knowledge of CLIL theory and strategies. Through a variety of lectures, discussion, and hands-on activities, participants will develop a working knowledge of CLIL theories and learn to implement CLIL strategies for teaching and assessment. Participants will also improve their English-language ability in terms of the language needed for teaching and managing the learning / teaching environment.

Who is the Program For?

The Professional Development Certificate in English as a Medium of Instruction (PDC-EMI) has been designed to meet the needs of universities, school boards, administrators and government ministries of education to support the implementation of English language instruction in their primary, secondary, or higher education school systems. The PDC-EMI prepares instructors to adapt their language, teaching methodologies and assessment practices to account for both the content and language, in order to make their teaching more effective. This program is also relevant for researchers whose first language is not English, but who use English for research in an EMI environment internationally.

Participants improve their English-language ability so they can more effectively teach and manage the EMI learning and teaching environment.

The minimum language requirement for participants is CEFR: B1-B2, or:

IELTS: 4.5-5.5
TOEFL iBT: 53-78
Cambridge PET (Pass or above) or Cambridge FCE (Grade C or higher)

Location of Delivery

This course can be delivered at Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada, or on-site at your institution. Module 1 of the PDC-EMI is also available online.

Certificate Structure

The Professional Development Certificate in EMI (PDC-EMI) is a modular certificate. Participants complete four compulsory modules to receive their PDC-EMI Certificate from Dalhousie. Total number of contact hours: 90. Each module consists of 22.5 hours of instruction.University.

Module 1: Introduction to CLIL in an EMI context
Module 2: Language for Teaching in an EMI context
Module 3: CLIL Management & Assessment
Module 4: Implementation of CLIL practices in an EMI context