From June 8th to June 15th, 2016 Voronezh State University was visited by Professor Dr. Thomas Manfred Raith, the Director of the Institute of English studies at the Pedagogical University of Freiburg.
He visited Voronezh University in order to share experience of the use of information and communication technologies in the English teacher training. During his staying at VSU, Thomas Raith, together with Senior Lecturer Elena Chaika, gave co-teaching training sessions to MA students enrolled in the master programme «Teaching foreign languages with the use of online technologies» (44.04.01. Language Education) on such disciplines of the curriculum as English Language Improvement, Language Teaching Methodology, and also observed Senior Lecturer Valentina Ivanova’s classes on German Language Improvement. He held a series of consultations with the teachers engaged in the educational process on this master programme. These activities were conducted in accordance with the Tempus project 544161-TEMPUS-1-2013-1-UK-TEMPUS-JPCR Aston University «Developing the Teaching of European Languages: Modernising Language Teaching through the Development of Blended Masters Programmes — DeTEL.
Moreover, Prof. T. Raith gave a lecture on using blogs in language teaching to the participants of the Summer linguistic school as well as the students of the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology, held an interactive session on the current issues of language teaching with the students of Borisoglebsk branch of VSU and trainees of the in-service training programme, and took part in the meeting with the students of Interlingua language school.
At the meeting with the Vice-Rector for Research and Information Prof. Vasily Popov and the Vice-Rector for Economy and International Cooperation Prof. Oleg Belenov, Dr. Thomas Raith shared his positive opinion about the organisation of the educational process on the master programme «Teaching foreign languages with the use of online technologies» and praised the MA students’ proficiency in the English and German languages. The participants of the meeting discussed the perspectives of the cooperation between VSU and the Pedagogical University of Freiburg (Germany), both in the framework of the current Tempus project, as well as in other areas of international activities.
In addition to his academic activities, Dr. Thomas Raith got familiarised with the major historical and cultural attractions of the city of Voronezh and Voronezh region – he visited the Kramskoy Museum of Fine Arts in Voronezh and the Art Gallery in Borisoglebsk, Goto Predistinatsiya museum, the museum of rare books and the museum of history of VSU, as well as the ethnography museum of the Faculty of Philology at Voronezh University. He took part in various activities of the Platonov festival and visited the Biosphere Nature Reserve. On all his sightseeing tours, Dr. Thomas Raith was accompanied by MA students who got an excellent chance to practise their interpreting skills.