Upper Advanced Conversation for English Language Learners

Language, Literature & Performing Arts
English Language Learning and Acquisition
Course Code
ELLA 0455
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course is for students who wish to refine their skills at leading as well as participating in formal and informal discussions in a variety of settings. Students will practice using interactive strategies appropriate in native-English speaking discussion situations. Students will also improve their ability to research, organize and make presentations, lead follow-up discussions and evaluate their own, as well as others’ performance. Finally, they will participate in debates, learning how to state and defend their positions on controversial issues. Students will practice and complete a variety of assignments typical of first-year university level coursework. Students will continue to develop language skills including grammar, sentence structure, vocabulary and pronunciation elements.
Course Content


  1. To participate in discussions
    • As participant
      • Listen and contribute actively
      • Stay on task
      • Use appropriate language style
      • Use conversational signals
    • As leader/chair
      • Develop plan or agenda
      • Give instructions for group tasks
      • Assign responsibilities
      • Ask questions
      • Encourage participants
      • Manage turn-taking and time
      • Paraphrase to confirm meaning
      • Keep group on task
      • Mediate conflict
      • Facilitate consensus
      • Summarize discussion outcomes
    • As interviewer
      • Prepare questions
      • Explain purpose
      • Take notes
      • Synthesize/summarize notes
  2. To analyze case studies
    • Define/analyze problems
    • Brainstorm solutions
    • Evaluate proposed solutions
    • Recommend solutions with rationale
  3. To participate in panels
    • Present information
    • Ask/respond to questions
    • Lead/participate in discussion
  4. To participate in debates
    • Ask/respond to questions
    • Make timed presentations
    • Analyze issues
    • Collaborate
    • Challenge/defend a position
  5. To give impromptu talks on spontaneous topics and under timed conditions
  6. To use pronunciation elements appropriately (problematic sounds, special intonation patterns)
  7. To prepare and deliver formal presentations
    • Select topic
    • Assess audience, speaking situation
    • Develop purpose and focus
    • Research topic; develop material
    • Prepare outline
    • Develop introduction, body, conclusion
    • Integrate source material
    • Prepare visuals/integrate visuals
    • Prepare handouts
    • Prepare note cards
    • Rehearse and obtain feedback
    • Use effective presentation style: eye contact, body language, vocal delivery, pausing and accurate  language use
    • Manage time effectively
    • Prepare follow-up discussion questions.

Reading and Writing

To prepare for, support, and extend speaking

  1. Follow written instructions
  2. Recognize purpose/issue, overall key idea,  main ideas, and key details
  3. Use context to determine meanings of unfamiliar words and phrases
  4. Use readings in speaking tasks
  5. Write notes, outlines, interview questions and answers, reports, summaries, and paragraphs
  6. Use written materials in speaking tasks (e.g., presentations)


  1. For explicit instruction as necessary and evaluation
    • All accuracy items from 100, 200, and 300 levels
    • Reported speech
    • Word choice
    • Pronunciation elements (problematic sounds, special intonation patterns)
  2. For  self-assessment
  • Identify errors and develop a needs analysis chart
  • Show improvement in self-monitoring for accuracy in prepared talks

Classroom Skills

Take responsibility for the following:

  1. attendance and punctuality
  2. class work and assignments
  3. participation and teamwork
Methods Of Instruction

The instructor will facilitate, observe and evaluate students’ participation in communicative activities.  Whole and small group instruction will be combined with individual assistance and student-directed learning.  Students will participate in the setting of goals by identifying their communicative and language development needs, and will participate in the selection of learning activities.

Means of Assessment
  1. Complete assigned skill development tasks. These should include:
    • notes on discussions, interviews, reports, and “presentations”
    • reports on outside speaking tasks/projects
    • presentation materials (outlines, notecards, research notes, discussion questions and an appropriate reference list (APA style)
    • activities for pronunciation elements
  2. Identify topic, main ideas and details in conversations and presentations
  3. Participate in and lead small group and class discussions; carry out assigned role (e.g., leader/chair, notetaker, reporter, observer, monitor) and complete assigned tasks
  4. Complete at least two speaking projects . These could include:
    • planning and participating in a seminar discussion, panel presentation, or debate
    • leading a discussion or panel presentation
    • interviewing a College administrator, business owner or professional
    • presenting a summary of an educational video
  5. Complete at least two speaking tasks using appropriate technology. These could include:
    • giving an informative or persuasive impromptu speech
    • summarizing a short chapter or excerpt from an academic course text, periodical or professional journal
    • explaining a concept or process from an academic course text using visuals including relevant graphs and tables
    • describing the training and experience required for a specific profession
    • reporting on  a research project
    • arguing against a proposed policy, regulation or law
    • analyzing a case study
  6. Participate in a panel presentation (3-5 members;15-30 minute) using and critiquing multiple sources. One topic could be an evaluation of a recent technological change (e.g. effects of email on workplace communication).The presentation should be organized as follows:
    • identify the problem
    • propose a range of potential solutions with the advantages and disadvantages of each
    • discuss the best solution with a rationale
  7. Complete oral tasks with a specified level of delivery competence which must include appropriate eye contact, body language and vocal delivery features such as voice quality and appropriate pausing
  8. Complete oral and written tasks to a specified level of accuracy
  9. Complete quizzes, both skill based and content based
  10. Complete at least 2 self-assessments of learning strategies, progress and classroom skills to be discussed with the instructor.

This is a Mastery graded course.

Learning Outcomes

Overall Objectives

Extend communicative proficiency and language accuracy for a broad range of academic purposes

Specific Objectives

  1. Understand complex academic oral communication on sometimes unfamiliar topics to obtain detailed information, to explore academic content, and to develop critical thinking
  2. Take notes for academic purposes
  3. Communicate proficiently in culturally-appropriate ways on abstract, conceptual, or technical topics to obtain and give detailed information, explore and analyze current community and global issues.
  4. Speak comprehensibly in most contexts with communication rarely impeded by global errors in grammar, and sentence structure
  5. Read to prepare for, support, and extend speaking skills and to expand vocabulary
  6. Write with a specified level of accuracy to extend speaking skills
  7. Monitor language use and apply strategies to a specified level of accuracy in grammar, sentence structure, word choice, and pronunciation elements
  8. Assess progress
  9. Participate effectively in a college classroom using strategies for effective and ethical collaboration
  10. Apply knowledge of the interplay of culture and communication in order to understand intercultural interactions and communication behaviours
Textbook Materials

Students may be required to purchase a textbook



ELLA 0350 or EASL 0350


ELLA 0260 or EASL 0260

or ELLA assessment



No corequisite courses.


No equivalent courses.

Requisite for

This course is not required for any other course.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
There are no applicable transfer credits for this course.

Course Offerings

Summer 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.