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Programme Description 2009-2010

Below you will find a description and explanation of the structure and content of the different academic acitivities of the Max Weber Programme, current year.

Academic Practice Activities

APW – Academic Practice Workshops (2nd & 4th Wed. of the month; 11.00-13.00) APW’s are divided into four modules. The modules overlap in time to allow for continuity and follow up sessions on activities.

  • Presenting and Communication
  • Job Market
  • Publishing & Writing
  • Teaching & Assessment

APG - Academic Practice Groups (Discipline bound - Organized independently by the four discipline groups: ECO fellows, HEC fellows, LAW fellows & SPS fellows).

The Practice Groups are intended to complement the Practice Workshops and can serve as follow-up sessions on the workshops but allow for more discipline bound discussions and in-depth exchange of ideas and experiences.

ACW - Academic Writing (Modules and Individual Tutorials on Tuesdays, 11-12.30; Writers’ Groups on Wednesdays, 9-11).

Academic writing activities are an integral part of the Max Weber Programme. Organised by the English Unit (EUI Language Centre/FIESOLE group), they are designed not only to assist non-native fellows in fine-tuning their academic communication skills but also to support the writing process for all the members of the Programme.

A specific module on pronunciation within the context of research presentations will also be offered. For details on the three components, see below.

Multidisciplinary Research Activities

MRW – Multidisciplinary Research Workshops (1st Wed. of the month; 11.00-13.00)

The workshops are organized by MWP in the 1st term and each Academic Practice Group will be responsible for one MRW during the 2nd and 3rd term. The sessions are based on input from an outside speaker, fellow or EUI faculty. The aim is to enhance multidisciplinary understanding between the disciplines present in the programme. These normally two-hour sessions are open to the EUI community.

MWL – Max Weber Lectures (3rd Wednesday of the month; 17.00)

The monthly Max Weber Lectures are delivered by distinguished scholars representing the four disciplines present in the programme. However, the programme aims at inviting scholars who have a special interdisciplinary focus which will be of broad academic interest to all members of the EUI community. These lectures are always at 17.00 and are followed by a cocktail at Villa la Fonte.

Academic Writing (provided by the EUI Language Centre)

The three components of Academic Writing (modules, tutorials, writers' groups) are designed to meet the varied needs of the Max Weber Fellows (both native and non-native speakers of English) and they are offered by the English Unit/FIESOLE group on an ongoing basis throughout the year.

Modules: Tuesdays 11.00-12.30 (October-December). Three modules, focusing on (i) pronunciation and research presentations, (ii) grammar and research writing, and (iii) corpus resources and textual structuring

  • Pronunciation for research presentations (2 sessions)

This module is designed to assist non-native fellows to improve the intelligibility of their spoken academic English, by focusing selectively on segmental and prosodic features that contribute to successful communication in large-group settings. The module will be tailored to specific problem areas emerging from September presentations and will provide opportunities for rehearsing and obtaining feedback.

  • Grammar in research papers (3 sessions)

This module addresses some key areas of English grammar that are central to persuasive research writing. The specific topics will be finalised after your writing samples have been analysed, but in past years have included modals and modalisation, the expression of writer stance in citing and paraphrasing the work of other scholars, typical patterns of time and tense in different sections of a research paper, as well as problem areas that often persist even at very advanced levels (e.g. use of articles and other elements contributing to discourse cohesion).

  • Corpus resources and discourse structuring (3 sessions)

This module, taught in collaboration with Nick Groom (Centre for English Language Studies, University of Birmingham University/FIESOLE group), has the dual objective of introducing fellows to the use of specialised corpora as a support for academic writing in specific disciplinary areas and as a way of reflecting on strategic aspects of textual structuring.

Tutorials: Tuesdays 11.00-12.30 (October-Easter). Tutorials provide the opportunity for individual half-hour sessions with a member of English Unit to discuss and revise writing in progress. These sessions can also be used to practise ‘dry runs’ of seminar or conference presentations, check slides, cover letters, etc.

Writers’ groups: Wednesdays 9.00-11.00 (October-Easter). Writers’ groups provide an effective setting for exchanging constructive feedback on the readability and effectiveness of texts before e.g. submitting them for publication. The groups, organised according to discipline and facilitated by a member of the English Unit, meet once every three weeks and are open to both native and non-native speakers of English.



The FIESOLEgroup is a network of applied linguists, educationalists and language professionals from a number of European institutions of higher education committed to the development and dissemination of best practices in the field of academic communication, with particular reference to the English for academic purposes needs of doctoral and post-doctoral researchers and junior faculty in today’s multilingual Europe.

Constituted in 2006 on the occasion of a first meeting organised in Florence under the auspices of the EUI Language Centre and the Max Weber Programme (hence the group’s acronym Fine-tuning Innovative European Strategies to Orient Language Education), the group collaborates through face-to-face interaction, teaching exchanges and a collaborative Moodle platform in order to share teaching and learning practices which have proved successful in the members’ home institutions.

Through its activities, the group is dedicated to developing teaching materials, methodologies, and curricular guidelines particularly suited to multilingual settings in which English functions as an academic lingua franca. Areas of particular expertise include teaching and learning in university classrooms (with particular attention to issues of cultural diversity), academic literacy, writing for publication, para-academic communication. Jointly and as individuals, the group offers workshops, intensive courses and educational consulting services tailored to the needs of host institutions throughout Europe.

In addition to the members of the EUI Language Centre’s English Unit, members of the group include faculty and language professionals from the London School of Economics and Institute of Education (University of London), Humbolt University (Berlin), Collège d’Europe (Bruges), University of Siena.



Page last updated on 06 September 2019

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