Transversal Competencies refers to the competencies that can be transferred between jobs (Brumfit, & Johnson, 1979). Fundamentally, these are the ones that individual must use to call the experience again. The acquisition and measurement of the transversal competencies imply that one can move from one career within the market in the building sector to another one (e.g. counselling) in another. These are the skills that nuance and strengthen professional competencies. The educational sciences specialist realizes a favorable tandem as regards professional awareness and applicability of professional deontology. With these types of skills, the teachers have a double role that involves the development of cooperation to promote awareness in the point of the part of a professional. Such types of skills enable the graduates to adapt the dynamic and complex reality (Kramsch 2006).
At the pedagogic level, the approach through which the competencies highlights the practical side of learning, the utility of the learning effects for the individuals as well as the society. In this regard, studies have shown that the use of competencies in defining the objective is crucial because it allows the education to provide a considerably more direct answer to the concrete needs of the community school functions in relation to the substantial requirements of the individuals to integrate from the social and professional point of view. Voiculescu, 2013, p.45) suggests an integrator model of approaching skills which valorizes the various interpretations of this concept and preserves the invariables identified within various approaches.
In the conception of the mentioned authors, the competencies skills are the proven capacity to adequately select, combine and utilize the knowledge and abilities and other acquisitions that consists of the values, attitude needed for a successful problem-solving. The transversal competence provides knowledge that ensures the theoretical basis of the competence, the ability to represent the executory, acting side of the competence and the personality characteristics that direct the competence from the value point of view (Kramsch 2006). Within the university environment, the transversal competence is defined in references to given disciplinary competencies. Notably, they are competencies that transcend the education discipline. Theoretically, part of the skills is learned with the disciplinary ones. These may include explicitly and implicitly.
The relevance of Communicative Competence in Teaching Foreign language
Teaching communicative competence provides the students with an opportunity to speak and share their ideas in a relatively relaxed manner. Ideally, the students are subjected to being the major players or protagonists within the classroom settings as part of foreign language learning (Valdman, 1992). As such, their initiative and motivation are both enhanced. Studies have shown that the problems that can be brought by the lack of competence in a foreign language can be solved through the implementation of communicative competence as a teaching strategy. Communicative competence does not only focus on the development of the student's listening and speaking abilities but also their writing skills.
Many national governments have been working towards seeking to adapt the curricula of their programs to the needs of the labour market, and equipping their students with the transferable competencies that will enable them to apply their knowledge in various professional areas. Within this context, the employability has been a significant focus of communicative competence. The future employer requires these skills. Teaching communicative competence in the non-linguistic universities, therefore, facilitates the introduction of the new teaching methods, which creates a diversified teaching process. Under these circumstances, it is possible that teachers can utilize the various resource to assist the students in developing their communicative skills, which is one way through which diversity is manifested.
For instance, English teachers can utilize the pictures to foster group discussions, thereby assisting the children in developing better informational understanding and the cultural backgrounds of various topics. Games also constitute one mechanism that promotes communicative competence (Halasz & Michel, 2011). Ideally, games can be used to help students learn about the foreign vocabulary and practice their writing skills. More specifically, teachers can assist the student in learning about the vocabulary and consequently practicing their writing skills. In some areas, teachers can help the students in developing contexts in a foreign language when teaching them grammar and the culture of that particular foreign language. Students can be asked various integrative questions to enable them to practice both their spoken foreign language but also learn about the different cultures (Valdman, 1992). Undeniably, this can be an excellent platform for the students to learn and deeply study a foreign language.
Halasz & Michel (2011) demonstrated that language learners make changes in their inter-language, particularly when they recognize that the changes must be made. The SLA research supports the argument that language learner's interaction with the native speakers and the more proficient non-native speakers has a positive effect on the process of inter-language development (Kramsch 2006). Learners may develop the ability to notice elements about their language use that do not match a native speaker's or more proficient non-native speakers. As such, the learner may get the opportunity to seek clarification, confirmation, repetition or through correcting the speaker. This mode of interaction is meaningful because the difference in the proficiency between the learner and the native speaker creates a foundation and environment for learning and the desire to know. Additionally, both of them may engage in language learning, particularly on the knowledge constructions through successful communication.
Challenges of Developing With Communicative Competencies in Students
Studies have reported that inadequate interaction between teachers and students contribute to one of the significant traditional limitations to the learning of foreign language. Traditional learning, in this case, encompasses a simple interaction mechanism where teachers are involved in lecturing while students take notes and rarely participate in class. Further, the test-based teaching methods make learners develop a certain degree of reluctance and therefore become unable to participate in various classroom activities. In this sense, therefore, the communicative teaching approach is still a journey from the theory to practice within the non-linguistic universities (Halasz & Michel, 2011).
Lack of individual initiative towards learning the foreign language also influences the effectiveness of teaching. Learning a foreign language calls for an own effort, although a joint initiative by both the teacher and students is essential. While it is evident that most universities pay more attention to the development of the student's communicative competence, the traditional systems of assessment do not take into account whether or not the students have genuinely developed such competencies (Kramsch 2006). In most cases, such methods are still ingrained, even though the dichotomy between fluency and accuracy is always worth to be taken into account. Related to this is the fact that students may not be willing to learn by themselves. Studies have found that students who do not speak the foreign language as their major may demonstrate a varied opinion about that particular language (Halasz & Michel, 2011). As such, the absence of both the input and output reduces the student's interest and skills in reading the vocabularies. This kind of attitude towards learning the foreign language my severely impede student's learning. As such, the teachers and students need to establish a steady relationship between learning a foreign language and teaching.
Brumfit, C. J., & Johnson, K. (Eds.). (1979). The communicative approach to language teaching (Vol. 308). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Cepic, R., Vorkapic, S. T., Loncaric, D., Andic, D., & Mihic, S. S. (2015). Considering Transversal Competences, Personality and Reputation in the Context of the Teachers' Professional Development. International Education Studies, 8(2), 8.
Halasz, G., & Michel, A. (2011). Key Competences in Europe: interpretation, policy formulation and implementation. European Journal of Education, 46(3), 289306
Kramsch, C. (2006). The Uses of Communicative Competence in a Global World. Review of Applied Linguistics in China, 2, 30-50
Martinez-Flor A, Uso-Juan E, Fernandez Guerra A (eds) (2003) Pragmatic Competence and Foreign Language Teaching. Servei de Publicacions Universitat Jaume I, Castello
Valdman A (1992) Authenticity, variation and communication in the foreign language Classroom. In: Kramsch C, McConell-Ginet S (eds) Text and Context: Crossdisciplinary Perspectives on Language Study. D.C. Heath, Lexington, MA, pp 79-97
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