Review from English Teaching professional 95
"This book is intended for EAP practitioners globally, which is a welcome reminder that the field extends well beyond UK university contexts. It provides a survey of the literature, including six of the more well-known works covering the development of EAP as a distinct area of ELT. These are divided into the more theoretically and the more practically focused. The book claims in its Introduction to offer a ‘comprehensive, up to date and coherent account of the field ... an accessible description of EAP practice ... grounded in current theories and developments in the field’, and it does, indeed, fulfil this brief.
The book is clearly organised into theory and practice sections, moving from ‘The Field of EAP’ to chapters on each of the four skills, and arriving at the final three chapters which take a more practical approach, covering materials, assessment and technologies. Especially welcome is Chapter 12 on technologies, which was written by Aisha Walker. At the end of each chapter, there are useful references for further reading. The scope is broad and this has necessitated an overview approach. It also reflects the author’s views of the field, as he states in the Introduction. If the aim is to provoke further healthy debate, this has been achieved.
In terms of the rapid development of the field, especially regarding its widening diversity and use of technologies, an up-to-date account is useful. In addition, the author does not shy away from the key issues, some of them attracting controversy, such as the English for General Academic Purposes or English for Specific Academic Purposes debate (a general approach or a subject-specific approach for teaching academic skills and language). The extent to which organisations like BALEAP, a global association for practitioners of EAP, cover the teaching of EAP outside the UK is a second key issue. Both these topics are covered in Chapter 2. The status of the EAP teacher is a third important issue that de Chazal addresses; he offers constructive comments regarding the reach, scope and influence of the EAP practitioner. BALEAP features prominently; its EAP teacher competency framework underpins the discussion of teaching practices and the professional and personal development that is so desirable.
The book covers the whole field of EAP, from foundation courses, through pre-sessional programmes to in-sessional support. It was pleasing to see secondary EAP, a relatively little-known area, mentioned. In the discussion of issues such as the ‘specific versus general’ approach to EAP teaching and materials, however, de Chazal appears to be firmly rooted in the pre-sessional general EAP course in a higher-education setting.
The level of explanation is extremely clear, and the pedagogic style in which de Chazal writes makes it particularly valuable for early-career second-language MA TESOL students and for those responsible for leading EAP initiatives in their institution, as a tool to aid teacher education. This includes non-language teachers and administrators. For those making the transition from EFL or ESP to EAP, one of the practically-oriented EAP books may be more attractive, initially, especially where shortage of time is a factor. De Chazal’s book would, however, effectively support a teacher’s postpre-sessional reflection."