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photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 22 May 2012

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Italian University To Become English

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • rector: the principal of a school
  • graduate: one who has completed the necessary courses in a program
  • employable: able to get a job
  • reluctance: the state of being unsure about doing or accepting something
  • degree courses: main classes to be completed for graduation in a program

Italian University To Become English

The Politecnico di Milano, a leading in Italy, has announced that it is becoming an English-speaking school. The university’s top officials defended the decision, saying that switching to English for degree and graduate courses is the only way to as an international institution. The university’s rector said this change will make the university more to overseas students from places like China and India. Despite some reluctance, many current students and professors agree that this change will also make graduates more employable. The country’s minister hopes other universities in Italy will do the same. It is becoming a trend for degree at major universities in China and South Korea to be taught in English.

Comprehension Questions

  1. What major change is being made at The Politecnico di Milano?
  2. What is the purpose for this change?
  3. What trend is mentioned at the end of the report?

Discussion Question: The cost of switching materials and instructors to English will be very high, but what about the cultural cost? Do you agree with some critics who call this switch a “cultural earthquake”?

show Answers

Written by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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