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1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 Aims of this report:

The six one-day BALEAP Professional Issues Meetings (PIMs) in the period 1995-97 are reviewed here mainly through speakers’ reports. This represents a wide-ranging overview of current practice, practical concerns and theoretical issues in the field of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) as practised in UK universities. The titles of the six one-day conferences show concern for defining the boundaries of EAP within institutions (Essex), for the specific teaching area of collocation (Leeds), for self-access in EAP (Exeter), the increasing integration of EAP into mainstream academic courses (Hertfordshire), the issue of training teachers in EAP (Sussex) and the powerful development of research into writing (Reading).

Each of the six meetings was distinctive, with varied numbers of speakers, some with plenaries and workshops, some with plenaries only. Most speakers submitted a written version of their session and these form the basis for this report.

1.2 What is a Professional Issues Meeting or PIM?

BALEAP, the British Association for Lecturers in English for Academic Purposes, has been organising professional Issues meetings since 1991. The format is a one day meeting on a Saturday, hosted by different institutions around the country. The work of organising and running each meeting is split between the local organiser, who sets up the programme and the local arrangements, and the BALEAP PIM co-ordinator, who encourages colleagues to offer PIMs and deals with advertising and applications.

The PIM Co-ordinator takes on the roles for two years. The first PIM co-ordinator was Mike Beaken (Sheffield); my predecessor was Hilary Bool, at Nottingham University, who produced the first PIM report for 3 meetings in 1994; my successor is Mary Scott, at the Institute of Education in London.

The frequency is intended to be two or three per year, remembering that BALEAP has a full two/three day conference in spring once every two years. The next conference is in Leeds, April 1999 and the theme is Technology in EAP. Further information from Peter Howarth, e-mail “P.Howarth@leeds.ac.uk”.

The intention to join with other professional groups was realised in the Hertfordshire meeting, which was run jointly with BASELT. We hope to maintain closer relations with the IATEFL ESP SIG whose members have similar interests as our own.

1.3 A list of the PIMs to date:

Mike Beaken, Sheffield (1991-93):

Hilary Bool, Nottingham (1993-95):

Gail Langley, South Bank (1995-97)

Mary Scott, Institute of Education (1998):

1.4 Distribution of this report:

One copy of this report is sent to all BALEAP institutional and individual members. Further copies can be ordered: see the order form on the next page.

1.5 Thanks to all:

BALEAP Professional Institute Meetings are very much joint ventures: so many thanks indeed, particularly to the Local Organisers, to all our speakers and contributors, and to the enthusiastic participants who attend on a Saturday, often travelling great distances.

My thanks to Hilary Bool, my predecessor as PIM Co-ordinator, and best wishes to Mary Scott who has taken on the role now.

A special mention of thanks to Mike Child at South Bank who took on a lot of the administrative and secretarial work.

Gail Langley
South Bank University
April 1998

Back to contents 1995-1997.