Teaching tourism lexis to international relation students as a linguistic problem and a priority

UDC    338.48:811.111                                                       

 N. M. Vasylyshyna

Kyiv National Aviation University,  Institute of International Relation


Teaching tourism lexis to international relation students as a linguistic problem and a priority

Annotation: the article under consideration deals with one of the urgent matters of contemporary society which is related to mastering tourism lexis by international relations students. The main problem of the proposed survey was defined as investigation of psychological factors such as motivation and memorizing together with taking a view of theoretical aspects, the most effective methods, techniques, and approaches in teaching tourism glossary for international relations students.

Key words: lexis, vocabulary, glossary, aspects, methods, techniques, investigation, motivation, long-term and short-term memory.

Анотація: у статті розглядається одне з актуальних питань сучасного суспільства, що пов’язане із оволодінням туристичної лексики студентами з міжнародних відносин. Основна проблема запропонованого наукового пошуку стосувалася дослідження психологічних чинників, таких як мотивація і запам’ятовування одночасно з розглядом теоретичних аспектів, найбільш ефективних методів, прийомів, підходів у викладанні туристичного глосарію для студентів з міжнародних відносин.

Ключові слова: лексика, словниковий запас, глосарій, аспекти, методи, прийоми, дослідження, мотивація, довгострокова і короткострокова пам’ять.

Аннотация: в статье рассматриваемая одной из актуальных вопросов современного общества, что связано с освоения туристической лексики студентами международных отношений. Основная проблема предложенного исследования относилась к  рассмотрению  психологических факторов, таких как мотивация и запоминания одновременно затрагивая теоретические аспекты, наиболее эффективные методы, приёмы, подходы в процессе преподавания туристического глоссария для студентов с международных отношений.

Ключевые слова: лексика, словарный запас, глоссарий, аспекты, методы, приемы, исследование, мотивация, долгосрочная и краткосрочная память.

The matter of tutoring professional lexis has been covered by numerous scientists and investigators. By the way, Lois A. Hirst and Christy Slavik have depicted cooperative approaches to language learning. Some of the main ideas comprise the assumption that cooperative learning allows students to work together to reach common goals. To their mind, cooperation means more than putting students in groups. It means group participation in a project in which the outcome results from common effort, the goal is shared and each person’s success is linked with every other person’s success. In practice, this means that ideas and materials are shared, labor is divided, and everyone in the groups is rewarded for the successful completion of the task [1].

Furthemore, Jeffries Sophie considers grammar terminology to be  an obstacle to language learning taking into consideration the fact that numerous grammar notions are unnecessary to be remembered by the students, which is a very big hurdle in acquiring vocabulary [1].

Thus, having analyzed some of the surveys we can define the major purpose of the article that is to link motivation and memory opportunities to mastering tourism glossary; to find out and present theoretical aspects, the most effective methods, techniques, approaches in teaching tourism glossary for international relations students.


One of the most important factors that influence on successful learning of vocabulary is motivation. Creating a positive learning atmosphere is closely linked with motivation. Motivation is an important and a necessary part of students’ work that affects their future success or failure. It is a kind of inner motor that encourages us to do our best to achieve a satisfactory goal in our activity. Harmer describes motivation as “some kind of internal drive that encourages somebody to pursue a course of action“ [2].

Motivation to learn can be affected by various factors around students. Teacher is probably the major factor in a process of motivation. He or she acts a primary role in the continuance of students’ motivation. His or her enthusiasm and interest in subject are considered to be highly motivated feature for students. Students are definitely influenced by the way of speaking, explaining and teachers attitude to them so the method of learning is another important factor in motivation. It has a close connection with an attractive way of lesson presentation. Others factors that influence motivation may be the general attitude to subject or the influence of people close to them. Concerning the ESP, in our case tourism, course, positive attitude to subject is more than evident and there is no prior need to develop students. positive attitude to subject matter, that was already developed by previous knowledge and interest in studying subject, but to make students familiar with particular way of using English.

That is why English should not be presented as a subject matter of learning, but in the context with learners’ needs and knowledge. The way of presenting the content through English is an important motivating step for ESP students. Lack of motivation may lead to lack of students‘interests in studying subject that is why a teacher should be careful about the choice of ESP materials and activities in the lesson and about organizing the course in general [4].

In our vocabulary teaching methodology we rely upon the several aspects of lexis that need to be taken into account when teaching tourism vocabulary.  Boundaries between conceptual meaning: knowing not only what lexis refers to, but also where the boundaries are that separate it from words of related meaning (e.g. cup, mug, bowl)[2].

  • Polysemy: distinguishing between the various meaning of a single word form with several but closely related meanings.
  • Homonymy: distinguishing between the various meaning of a single word form which has several meanings which are NOT closely related.
  • Homophyny: understanding words that have the same pronunciation but different spellings and meanings.
  • Synonymy: distinguishing between the different shades of meaning that synonymous words have.
  • Affective meaning: distinguishing between the attitudinal and emotional factors (denotation and connotation), which depend on the speakers attitude or the situation.
  • Style, register, dialect: Being able to distinguish between different levels of formality, the effect of different contexts and topics.
  • Translation: awareness of certain differences and similarities between the native and the foreign language (e.g. false cognates).
  • Chunks of language: multi-word verbs, idioms, strong and weak collocations, lexical phrases.
  • Grammar of vocabulary: learning the rules that enable students to build up different forms of the word or even different words from that word (e.g. sleep, slept, sleeping; able, unable; disability) [1, 2].
  • Pronunciation: ability to recognize and reproduce items in speech.

Besides aspects of teaching tourism vocabulary for international relation students in our investigation we have found out, on the basis of practical activity, peculiar supplementary methods in implementation of  mentioned above aspects. Our methods are named as follows: explicit presentation, repetition, immediate  practice, integration and recycling, social application, personalization, through context and examples, using videos, doing puzzles, forming words, creating word map, making the corresponding meaning, associating images and meanings, finding collocations and associating vocabulary [3].

All mentioned above aspects, methods will be extremely useful and applicable effective ways to teach tourism vocabulary in case of understanding how memory of international relations students works. It seems that learning new items involve storing them first in our short-term memory, and afterwards in long-term memory. Research also suggests that our ‘mental lexicon’ is highly organised and efficient, and that semantic related items are stored together. Word frequency is another factor that affects storage, as the most frequently used items are easier to retrieve. We can use this information to attempt to facilitate the learning process, by grouping items of vocabulary in semantic fields, such as topics (e.g. types of accommodation). According the latest investigations memory strategies to aid learning can be divided into:

– creating mental linkages: grouping, associating, placing new words into a context;

– applying images and sounds: using imagery, semantic mapping, using keywords and representing sounds in memory;

– reviewing well, in a structured way;

– employing action: physical response or sensation, using mechanical techniques [4].

The techniques just mentioned can be used to greater advantage if we can diagnose learning style preferences (visual, aural, kinesthetic, tactile) and make students aware of different memory strategies. Meaningful tasks however seem to offer the best answer to vocabulary learning, as they rely on students’ experiences and reality to facilitate learning. More meaningful tasks also require learners to analyze and process language more deeply, which should help them retain information in long-term memory. Forgetting seems to be an inevitable process, unless learners regularly use items they have learnt. Therefore, recycling is vital, and ideally it should happen one or two days after the initial input. After that, weekly or monthly tests can check on previously taught items [5].

To our mind, teachers can encourage learners to use other methods, using topics and categories to organize a notebook, binder or index cards. Meaning should be stored using English as much as possible, and also giving indication for pronunciation. Diagrams and word trees can also be used within this topic/categories organisation. The class as a whole can keep a vocabulary box with cards, which can be used for revision/recycling regularly. Organizing this kind of storage system is time-consuming and might not appeal to every learner. Therefore adapting their chronological lists to include headings for topics and a more complete definition of meaning would already be a step forward [4,5].

To conclude, it will be quite important to mention that in order to achieve high results in mastering tourism vocabulary by international relations students a lot of factors should be taken into consideration and paid attention on. That is in case of applying such circumstances as motivation to learning foreign language, aspects of teaching tourism vocabulary for international relation students, various methods and techniques and awareness of  students’ memory features and potential.

As a recommendation for further scientific investigation in the area of  teaching tourism vocabulary can be outlined such direction as active implementation of computer technologies into the glossary learning process.



  1. Brumfrt Ch. J. Communicative Methodology in Language Teaching / Brumfrt Ch. J.– Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1990. – 166 p.
  2. Davis P. Dictation: New Methods, New Possibilities / P. Davis, M. Rinvolucri. – Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1992. – 122 p.
  3. Duckworth M. Going International. English for Tourism. Textbook. / Duckworth M. – London: Oxford University Press, 1998. – 154 p.
  4. 195 Gardner R. C. Attitudes and Motivation in Second / R. C. Gardner, W. E. Lambert // Languages Learning. – Rowley, Mass.: Newbury House Publishers, 1984. – Р. 47–89.
  5. Gullette C.C. Hints on Teaching Vocabulary / C.C. Gullette, L.C. Keathing. – London: Oxford University Press, 2003. – P. 27– 29.

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