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Art-Related English Language Course

12 February - 2 March 2018

For the fourth successive year a group of undergraduate students from Musashino Art University (MAU), Japan, attended our 3-week Intensive Art-Related English Course.  This short programme ran from 12th February until 2nd March 2018 and comprised seminars and lectures organised by the English Language Centre. The students studied subject-specific vocabulary, discussed art and art-related texts, practised oral presentations and learned about contemporary Western art. They also had the opportunity to meet up with students on the Gold Award Programme and with Fine Art Extension students, which was welcomed by all and was the start of further get-togethers. Outside class, the students made best use of their time exploring London’s sights, museums and markets, and some travelled further afield to Brighton, Whitstable, Castlecombe, Oxford, Windermere, Edinburgh and Loch Ness.

Being able to discuss art and talk about their own projects in English was for most of them a particular highlight as there is little opportunity for that in Japan, as Ayasa, a first year Arts Policy and Management student, and Kenji, a second year student in Industrial, Interior and Craft Design, emphasise. Maako, also a student in Arts Policy and Management about to graduate this year, adds that she has learnt to be brave enough to speak in front of others.  Another part of the course that was praised a lot were the lectures on semiotics and the YBA. Miyu, a Science of Design student in her second year, specifically liked the fact that they had to “research and prepare the lectures” and could therefore “understand so much more”. She added that she had never quite liked contemporary art before but now enjoys the YBA and other more recent art.  Ying, a Chinese Master’s student in Printmaking, called her stay here at Goldsmiths an “absolutely unforgettable experience!!”, and several students expressed the wish to return to Goldsmiths in the future, possibly to study for a Master’s.

Course designer and lead lecturer Viola Eidenbenz said the course was, as in previous years, a great success, and Centre Manager Marl’ene Edwin stated, “We will be holding a similar course next year”. Any departments who might recommend international students for this course or may want to collaborate on future short courses with an academic English element should contact the ELC.