Business English and Implications on TESOL Essay

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Business English and Implications on TESOL

Throughout the recent period, the United States of America has emerged as the greatest global power at both economic as well as political levels. Today, the largest economic construction is represented by the European Union, with a total of $14,820 billion, but the EU is a formation of numerous states. Still, at an individual level, the United States generates the highest national outputs, in the total amount of $14,660 billion (Central Intelligence Agency, 2011).

The current economic state of the U.S.A. is challenged by the financial crisis, as well as the slow but sure ascension of the Asian states. After the U.S. For instance, the following three largest economies of the globe are China (with a gross domestic product of $10 trillion), Japan, with a GDP of 4.31 trillion and India with a total national output of $4.06 trillion (Central Intelligence Agency).

In such an economic context, rumors are starting to circulate regarding the future popularity of Mandarin -- the native language in China. Daycare centers are being opened across the globe to teach Mandarin to children and such programs are even being developed within organizational climates.

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Still, a scenario in which Mandarin would become the more common language of international circulation is far from materializing and English still remains the most popular language to completing international communications. In this context then, emphasis is being placed on the efforts of teaching English to foreigners, so that they can use it in their communications for various purposes, mainly business however.

2. Business English. Definition, emergence and importance

Essay on Business English and Implications on TESOL Assignment

The concept of business English commonly refers to the totality of phrases and vocabulary of the English language and which are used in business communications. The field of business English is different from the general field of the English language since this is characterized by specific phrases which are essential to business operations. Some examples of phrases in business English include for instance the employee turnover rates, the gross domestic product, the financial statements (balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements), investment decisions, portfolios and so on.

The specialized literature has a rather intriguing approach of the concept of business English in the meaning that most of the sources do not offer a complete and clear definition of business English. The explanation for this situation relies in the fact that the concept is often self explicit and that it could be difficult for the researchers to create a stern and rigid definition in which to integrate the multitude of applications and importance of business English. The lines below centralize some of the more notable definitions of the concept of business English:

Business English revolves around the language which is being used for business situations

Business English refers to the language used in business contexts, with specific emphasis on the style and forms of the business correspondence

Business English represents an advantage when seeking employment

Business English is a specific variation of international English

Business English includes a variety of phrases which are used to improve the language skills of people in different business scenarios (ESL in Canada).

The multitude of definitions of the concept of business English indicate that the people perceive the concept in different manners. And these manners of perceiving the concept are often linked to personal features. For instance, to the people trying to find a job, business English could be understood as something they need to learn in order to get a job. For an individual who speaks English -- the common language -- business English could represent a specific field of the international English language. In such instances then, it appears that the final definition of the concept of business English is given by the individual perceptions of the people, as well as by the very goals when learning or interacting with business English.

The propagation of business English is the result of the complex process of globalization. It is quite uncertain when globalization commenced, but it is safe to argue that it has become stronger throughout the past recent years. Globalization is generically understood as a process by which the boundaries of the national states are lifted and the free circulation of people, merchandise, resources and other such features is supported.

It could be stated that this understanding of globalization is insufficient as it relates to the circulation of goods and people in the context of the free international market, when globalization also allows the free circulation of values and ideas. In such a context then, globalization would be understood as a phenomenon by which goods and values transcend the boundaries of a traditional country and come to impact the values in a different region across the globe.

The specialized literature approaches the concept of globalization from the two distinctive angles which have been mentioned above, namely the circulation of resources which impact world economies, and the integrated circulation of goods, resources, but also values and other intangible features. The lines below reveal some of the more relevant definitions of globalization:

"Globalization is the system of interaction among the countries of the world in order to develop the global economy. Globalization refers to the integration of economics and societies all over the world. Globalization involves technological, economic, political, and cultural exchanges made possible largely by advances in communication, transportation, and infrastructure" (Hub Pages).

Globalization represents the "process of increasing connectivity and interdependence of the world's markets and businesses" (Investor Words).

Globalization represents the "worldwide movement toward economic, financial, trade, and communications integration. Globalization implies the opening of local and nationalistic perspectives to a broader outlook of an interconnected and interdependent world with free transfer of capital, goods, and services across national frontiers" (Business Dictionary).

"Globalization is a process that encompasses the causes, course, and consequences of transnational and transcultural integration of human and non-human activities" (Al-Rodhan and Stoudmann, 2006).

Similar to the concept of business English, the phenomenon of globalization is presented with various definitions. It is as such arguable that the definitions and the means of understanding globalization differ from one source to the other, based on the values considered important by each individual researcher. Additionally, aside from this, it is also safe to argue that the definition of globalization is ever changing, as the context in which it manifests continues to change. In this order of ideas then, Dr. Nayer R.F. Al-Rodhan and Ambassador Gerard Stroudmann conclude that:

"Globalization in evolutionary; it is a fluid process that is constantly changing with the development of human society" (Al-Rodhan and Stroudmann, 2006, p. 6).

In theory, globalization is generically assumed as a process by which the various countries of the globe correlate their efforts to create an integrated international market. In practice however, the forces of globalization are mostly exerted by the more socially and economically developed Western Hemisphere. In other words, it is the countries of the West which develop more international operations that bring them more profits. Also, it is the modern values of the West which influence the traditional patriarchal cultures in the East, rather than the reverse influence. In such a context then, globalization has been assimilated with a process by which economic, political and cultural integration have been initiated by the Western states, in a wider process of Westernization.

In some extreme cases, the process of Westernization has been strictly pegged to the United States of America and the term of Americanization has even been coined; a specific application of Americanization is represented by McDonalization (Kumaravadivelu, 2008, p. 39). In either scenario, the arguments include the pressures exerted by the United States to develop its economic operations, to expand its operations to the other global regions, to promote its values and to register increased financial gains.

Against this background of intense Americanization and Westernization, coupled with the macroeconomic features which supported their propagation, the English language became more and more popular. It was initially promoted through the Hollywood films, through the television series, the MTV music and so on. And recently, it is promoted by the organizational climate in the international plants of the Western multinational corporations. Business English has gradually become an omnipresent feature and a need for the individuals in the foreign countries conducting business with the United States and other Western countries.

3. TESOL

In the context of the increasing popularity and need for business English, groups across the world focused on how to best serve this demand. Special educational centers were created to help adults learn the language and some economic agents even offered language training courses as part of their training and incentive programs. Gradually, English teaching as a second language became a popular activity, obvious at numerous levels of the society and influencing the lives of both students as well as educators.

The acronym TESOL stands for the practice of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, or to the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages. TESOL generically includes the practices of teaching the English language to the people… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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