Nederlands als tweede taal
  • ISSN 0169-7420
  • E-ISSN: 2213-4883
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At the Projectafdeling Culturele Minderheden (Cultural Minorities Department) of the Rotterdam Schooladviesdienst (Educational Ad-vice Service) language programmes are being developed, aimed at preparing the second language speaking 16+ group for vocational training courses.The programmes can be split up into a general basic programme and various specific follow-up programmes. In order to establish the entry and the target levels of the programmes, the following activities have been undertaken:1 analysis of the proficiency that may be expected from existing beginners programmes, which has determined the entry level of the basic programme;2 analysis of the language requirements that the participants on the training courses must meet, from which the target levels of the follow-up programmes have been derived.A third activity that has been undertaken is to determine the syllabus design, i.e. which skills can be distinguished; which steps have to be taken within each separate skill; which unit of organisation is to be adopted. In connection herewith, the rele-vance of the communicative approach has been examined, especially in the light of the numerous publications on syllabus design which this approach has yielded.In this article a number of aspects of the communicative approach and communicative syllabus design are treated, namely the suitability of the approach for different types of courses, the position of grammar within the approach, criticism of the approach, and some alternatives of the notional/functional syllabus. Finally the relevance of the approach for the development of second language programmes is evaluated.Some conclusions are, that for several reasons the notional/func-tional approach has not been adopted. Build-up schemes for each of the four skills and grammar have been devised instead. These separate schemes are interrelated during the actual programme de-velopment. Grammar is partly integrated in each skill and partly practised in isolation in the form of language awareness activities. An important asset of the communicative approach is the suggestion to carry out language needs analyses. However, no use could be made of a model like Munby's, as it did not suit the purpose. The supposition is put forward that the communicative approach has more to offer in the field of methodology than in that of syllabus design.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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