Samarkand is located in the valley of the Zarafshan River in the center of the country, approximately 304 kilometers (189 miles) southwest of Tashkent. It is the second-largest city in Uzbekistan with a population of 504,423 people. In 2001, UNESCO added the city to its World Heritage List as Samarkand – Crossroads of Cultures. A former Fellow shared: “Living in Uzbekistan is pleasant because of the hospitable nature of the people. In my experience, I was taken care of, my needs were typically anticipated, and people were very genuinely engaged in interacting with me. I felt this especially in Samarkand, since that was my host city. People are very friendly, welcoming, and accommodating. Most things that people need can be found; if a person is very particular about something, it’s probably best to bring it with you, but for a person who can live without, at least for a 10-month period, life can go on pretty easily.”
Host Institution: Samarkand State Institute of Foreign Languages
SamSIFL was established on November 8, 1994. It currently hosts over 2,500 students, including 10 foreign students and 200 MA students. The Fellow will be assigned to the Faculty of Translation Theory and Practice, which hosts nearly 500 students pursuing bachelor’s degrees. This faculty employs 76 teachers, most of whom are young and highly motivated to develop professionally. The English proficiency level of 1st year students is between A2 and B1+ according to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). By graduation, English language majors should be at an advanced level corresponding to Band C1 in the CEFR which is equivalent to 95 scaled points in TOEFL iBT. Since the 2015-2016 academic year, SamSIFL has hosted 2 Fellows, who have taught Speaking and Listening classes to undergraduate students. One of the former Fellows shares: “Samarkand State Institute of Foreign Languages was very nice to work at. My colleagues were very helpful and friendly to me. I felt welcomed. As long as I asked the questions I needed to ask, the information that I needed would be provided to me, if not always directly.”
- The Fellow will teach Speaking and Listening classes to 2nd year undergraduate students majoring in English Language Teaching and Education. The PRESETT curriculum developed by the British Council and adopted in Uzbekistan in 2013 specifies that Listening and Speaking be taught once a week to undergraduate students. Accordingly, by the end of Year 2, students should be able to understand and speak English to a level corresponding to Band B2 in the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) or 72 scaled points in TOEFL iBT.
The Fellow may be asked to:
- Lead a weekly conversation club open to 1st year through 4th year students.
- Organize weekly workshops on teaching methodologies.