All IBM English for Business Studies (Business English) seminars are open to any interested student. If the online setting intimidates you, send me texts so you get feedback on your writing and your progress.
IBM First year
Three groups for the first semester - remember that too large groups are bad for language learning and use (Surnames A-E (group A, Mo 8&Tue 4), F-M (group B, Tue 12-4), N-Z (group C, Thu 12-4); group hopping is possible)
IBM first semester Zoom groups
IBM_1_A : Meeting ID: 878 3937 4963 / kt6nsQ
IBM_1_B : Meeting ID: 834 4448 9448 / kt6nsQ
IBM_1_C : Meeting ID: 819 7127 8067 / kt6nsQ
IBM Second year
IBM third semester Zoom : Meeting ID 862 7960 9629 and password 268617
Third year Business English specialism (A module)
The third-year Business English specialism looks at these topics.
Zoom : Meeting ID 253-632-840 and password 709612
Wirtschaftsenglisch, Wirtschaftsfranzösisch, Wirtschaftsdeutsch
Ansprechpartner für Kooperationen mit GB, Irland, Avans/NL und der Rennes School of Business
Understanding versus knowledge gathering is the most precious achievement at this level; knowledge is not helpful in terms of decision making processes or assessing or evaluating what we see in a real business. Assumptions and hypotheses are based on a systematic root cause analysis and not regurgitating knowledge (multiple choice exams are the worst in terms of understanding).
Interactions and communication at university is not about being right or wrong but learning to improve one's argumentation skills, learn from the others and develop one's own concept, and build a network.
Three inspirational authors in the fields of human development, neurosciences, and media studies have inspired me and I would like to share with you some of their thoughts.
The purpose of the four semester is to prepare students for their studies abroad; so the better term for the seminar would be English for Business Studies. In the first year, we work on texts and videos (BBC, Bloomberg, CNBC) that give us an overview of business and management in general and then branch out into the various fields during the second semester.
There is language work to some extent but students are required to identify skill issues and improve them with the help of feedback gained from in-class writing and set short assignments.
GROUPS & MOODLE
Mon 8/Tu 4 (A-E, exceptions are ok)
Tue 12-4 (F-M, exceptions are ok)
Thur 12-4 (N-Z, exceptions are ok)
IBM semesters 1&2 exam specifications (full first year - 2020 intake, online)
Percentages for grade calculation:
- terminology test (20 per cent)
- two graded 150-word assignments (business topic chosen by student, 20 per cent)
- voluntary ten-minute presentation on a business issue plus question time (20 per cent)
- written exam (30/20 per cent, 60 minutes)
- 1,200 word assignment (30/20 per cent)
Written Exam July 2021
Please follow the instructions given in my emails. Download the exam from Moodle when the exam starts and upload your text BEFORE Turnitin closes. If there are technical issues with Moodle Turnitin that are to force-majeure type incidents, screen shot the issue and IMMEDIATELY send me the text by email. There has to be a solid proof that is was not IT incompetence or bad wifi. I explained those factors during class many times.
July 14, 10 - 11am : virtual exam - three graphics to be analysed and discussed, two topics of your choice and the third one is on global sourcing; pdf will be on Moodle at that time; texts will be handed in until 11.05am on Turnitin. Late hand-ins are not acceptable under any circumstances. If you experience problems with Turnitin that minute, send me your text via email until 11.07am.
August 17, 11.59pm : deadline for your 1,200 word assignment on one of the topics dealt with this year. I will hand out the assignment titles in May.
The optional presentation is still possible (Zoom) and the marks from the vocabulary test and the assignment will also count.
ALL relevant downloads have been moved to the Moodle platform.
Handing in texts - some important remarks
I am happy to give you feedback based on the condition that
- you don't make avoidable mistakes (use the spell check; also online and free)
- you have learned from the previous feedback (sentence length 26+ words)
- you don't address me (using 'you')
- you don't use the ING form unless you are sure it is correct (it is not in 98 per cent of student writing)
- you don't use 'people'
- you have re-read your text several times to make sure you have written clearly and precisely
In the second year, we will work on a script containing plenty academic texts on various aspects ranging from economics to logistics. They will be final-year Bachelor level in order to be well prepared for UG(undergraduate) and PG(postgraduate) levels of study in Anglophone programmes.
Writing is part of all four semesters and prepares students for their final year at English-speaking universities.
Students will do a presentation and take a written exam or write a 5,000 word assignment at the end of the second year (deadline August 29). Every student has to register for the exam in order for the grade to be put in.
IBM semesters 3&4 exam specifications (full second year - 2019 intake)
- one 250-word assignment (15 per cent, deadline July 31)
- one 10-minute presentation plus question time on a business issue (30 per cent; Covid update below)
- one assignment (5,000 words) at the end of the full year or a 90-minute written exam (55 per cent).
The written exam (July 9, 10-11.30, room AW 1-41) requires students to answer three questions (text-based and graphics based).
The 5,000 word assignment covers a topic of choice and needs to be consistent with either the German or the Harvard style. A title page, table of contents page and the reading list are mandatory. The assignment is typical of UK Business Studies Programmes and is, thus, part of our system here. Use the spell check function of your writing software (or free online).
Zoom-based presentation, several cameras are possible, in front of the group or just me (consent form necessary).
Online presentation dates - please register here on Doodle.
For technical information go to Zoom web site
Classroom presentation in the summer break:
Sep 28 & 30 - please register on Doodle
Classroom presentation next semester
You will just present in another class for the time it takes, question round and then leave.
ALL relevant downloads have been moved to the Moodle platform.
At MMMU, students have to use the slightly adapted Harvard referencing system which can be found here.
In der zweistündigen und damit zweisemestrigen Veranstaltung beschäftigen wir uns mit Themen, die die Kursteilnehmer als A bzw. B Module gewählt haben auf Englisch. Dies soll die internationale Ausrichtung der Teilnehmer fördern. Darüber hinaus wird anhand von aktuellen Themen, britischen Sendungen wie Dragons' Den oder The Apprentice die Perspektive der Teilnehmer erweitert und die Sprachkompetenz auf das strategische Niveau angehoben.
Hier ist eine Übersicht der Inhalte des online Wintersemesters.
Both written exams are 90 minutes; second year assignment option replaces the second written exam.
General marking principles:
Two main areas determine the mark; the language and the content. The order is from the worst level to the best one.
Your assignment feedback lists all mistakes and errors plus a syntax analysis and some general feedback about more systemic issues. Here's a sample from this year's cohort; the first assignment is ungraded to give you an idea how my assessment works. This is the analysis of an excellent student submission of the 5,000 word assignment in year 2 (graded 1.3). And this is what a junior professor's analysis looks like (text is in the second semester seminar notes). The software I use for text composition and analysis is Corel's WordPerfect.
- language: no spell check used (for assignments)
- language: basic errors (student does not understand basic grammar rules such as third-person s)
- language: basic mistakes (not systematic, sloppiness, lack of rereading one's text)
- language: avoidable errors (hand-outs ignored, e.g. ‘you’, 'people', 'there is', etc)
- language: translation tool suggests wrong term because it does not explain how it is used or what the context is for the term
- language: connectives (lack leads to simple sentences that do not reflect academic complexity)
- language: level of detail/precision ('things' instead of more precision/detail)
- language: progress (new terms and structures from texts/hand-outs)
- content: completeness of answers
- content: basic/fundamental blunders (sourcing/producing, class content)
- content: sloppy research or insufficient knowledge leading to misspelling of companies or terms
- content: graphics section descriptive or a deeper analysis/interpretation
Spelling problems (dislexia) will not mean the end of your studies; however, it will have an effect on the first grade; choose an assignment for the second year exam and make sure to have the software check spelling and grammar.
In presentations, there are a number of No Nos (and we really don't say nogos because that has a different meaning)
- No spell check
- Ignoring the tips handed out in the first seminar notes
- German graphics
- (Intercultural) Content that is secondary school level and does not reach the level of the material in our seminar notes (Seminarskripte)
- Long text passages
- chaotic lists (remember the airline graphic in the first week of semester 1)
I highly recommend tools that help us to reflect on who we are and what we might want to train or develop in the future.
The IPIP-120 is a great tool assessing the candidate with the help of 120 questions (my results here). It takes about 10 to 15 minutes to do. There is also the IPIP-300 but I have not done that one, yet.
The third one I like is a Myers-Briggs derivate; it produces a nice alphabetical code that sums you up based on 16 personalities. The other benefit is that it lists celebrities both real and fictional that correspond to your profile. According to the test results, I am “The Advocate” (INFJ-T). Take the test it - it's very widely used by companies.
The fourth one I have not tried, yet, is a German one from Zuerich University. Check it out - Professor Ruch did a fantastic presentation about gelotophobia ( fear of being laughed at) at the Lindau Psychotherapy Weeks.
The year abroad
The Bachelor of International Business requires students to go abroad for one full academic year - either in their third or the final year - completing 60 ECTS (120 CATS). For credit collectors, there is the regulation that determines the content of their year (50 per cent Business and the remainder can be of any academic content). If students do a Business degree abroad they are exempt of this regulation.
The scheme may not require a thesis if it is not part of the programme at the host university.
Students can do a year in any country provided the course is taught in English and the university is accredited by the German system ( Anabin/KMK).
A large majority do a Master's degree in the fourth year; they receive our Bachelor and the British Master after four years and a few months.
In order to help you with your study abroad options, there is an information event every year in December - just before the Homecoming event. This event helps you assess your options because your senior fellow students present their host universities and courses of studies on that day (check events link).
Here are samples of the main files you need for your applications: grade transcript, references, letter of motivation. You also need the BO fonts to make sure the layout stays the same - meaning page breaks must be where the pdf transcript from your self-service area are. Check if Word tells you it's the Calibri font - then you have not installed the fonts (correctly). Contact me if you need help. Your modified transcript MUST look the same as the original one - same page breaks etc. I will sign and stamp your pdf or word files. For some universities, it is helpful to have the provisory Bachelors degree document which I can issue in August or whenever you are finished with thesis and viva (Kolloquium).
Provided you do your thesis&viva in year 3 with us, send host-university transcript to the coordinator. Check after two weeks if your HS Bo grade transcript contains this line (if not, contact the coordinator) "3000/3700/3701 Auslandsaufenthalt GE SS 15 1 BE 60"
Then, the Registrar will do as follows:
“Sobald uns [Prüfungsamt]..."
Provided you did your thesis&viva in year 3 with us (i.e. before your year abroad), send host-university transcript to the coordinator.
Check after two weeks if your HS Bo grade transcript contains this line (if not, contact the coordinator) "3000/3700/3701 Auslandsaufenthalt GE SS 15 1 BE 60"
Then, the Registrar will do as follows:
“Sobald uns [Prüfungsamt] der Ex-Antrag vorliegt, können diese abgeholt bzw. zugeschickt werden (per Einschreiben/Rückschein).“
Those students that are doing a PG degree at the host university hand in their transcripts stating they passed 120 credits (CATS, equals 60 ECTS) at level 7 and we will process them despite the fact that they still have to do their Master thesis at the host university. So they receive the Bachelor's degree before they are awarded the Master's.
A semester or even a year abroad gives you the edge! For our students, we can offer a considerable number of free - however mostly undergraduate - places.
Caveat: outside of Germany, there is no such thing as a summer semester; terms usually are from September to December and from January to April/May (trimesters are slightly different).
The deadline for your application is April 1 with me and June 1 for the Erasmus application at the International Office. The IO is also the body that signs where the documents to fill in mention the Institutional Coordinator; I am the Departmental Coordinator.
Capacity update March 2020: Manchester Metropolitan University fully used up for 2020. There are one place for Rennes and one for Galway (English taught UG and PG programmes) still available.
For your semester or year abroad, you may want to make use of the final year document downloadable on the right.
Please make sure that you verify your translations of seminars using the course manual (Modulhandbuch).
The transcripts in English should look like the German ones you download from our web site. Therefore, make sure the order is the same and you also put in the correct student id in the footer of the document.
Please note that the German commas become decimal points in English.
Study abroad with a little help from our friends
Free semesters abroad in anglophone countries have become really scarce.
Luckily for you, we still have a number of strong partners offering terms under the Erasmus scheme.
Our deadline here at Bochum UAS is April 2 to give us time to sort out your applications.
You need the following documents:
- Application document(s) from the host university (Gasthochschule)
- Learning agreement from and for us (see downloads section)
- Erasmus application (International Office, deadline June 1)
Four students per year can study at AVANS in the Netherlands and profit from the benefits of the Erasmus scheme. Here's what you can do there.
Avans is special in terms of their academic year split into four teaching periods and August start (end of August to end of October, November to January, January to April, April to July).
Three students per year can study at NUI Galway in Ireland and reap the benefits of the Erasmus scheme. Find out more and the necessary steps going to their Erasmus page; their deadline is mid-May.
Term dates 2020 - 2021
Unterricht 1. Semester : 28.09. - 18.12.2020
Prüfungszeitraum 1. Semester : 11. - 22.01.2020
Unterricht 2. Semester A: 08.02. - 02.04.2021
Prüfungszeitraum 2. Semester A : 06.04. - 09.04.2021
Unterricht 2. Semester B : 12.04. - 07.05.2021
Prüfungszeitraum 2. Semester B : 18.05. - 04.06.2021
For our IBM students, there are four free places on their International Business Management Bachelor. For more information, check out their web site; their deadline is May 1. An overview of modules to be chosen can be found here. Here is a learning agreement template.
Brexit will not affect the September 2020 Bachelor cohort!
Term dates 2020 - 2021
14.09.2020 - 11.12.2020 (Master Erasmus, ein 'Semester')
04.01.2021 - 01.04.2021 (Bachelor ganzes Jahr, 2. Trimester)
26.04.2021 - 18.06.2021 (Bachelor ganzes Jahr, 3. Trimester)
ESC Rennes (English programme)
At ESC Rennes, two UG (Level 3) or PG students (Level 4 and Level 5) can spend a very international year and receive the host university's degree. Check out the information and the necessary files here; their deadline is mid-May. The Bachelor content is here and Master programme content is here for Level 4, and here for Level 5. There are dual-degree options both for the Bachelor and the Master (link).
The application (and nomination) is online.
The academic year is - again - very different from the German one since no uni has what we call a summer semester starting in late March or April (September 2019 – end of December, January to May).
Alternatives in other countries
Bochum UAS has a large network of European universities that run English streams or offer business seminars in English. Take Wroclaw in Poland where US and UK colleagues teach business seminars. Getting the real thing elsewhere is no problem any more.
Plus, if 3M, GM, VW, and many more globally operating corporations have branches or subsidiaries in Poland, it cannot be a bad place for a business student, right?
Excursions for students & visiting students
Please check the Events section for details.
Getting the planning process right
Going abroad needs a good project management.
First and foremost, students need to be aware of the deadlines, semester starts etc.
Make sure to use the calendar file (ics file, download on the right) to have an overview and a reminder function for all your study-abroad matters.
Information for Bachelor students
A term abroad is time well spent - for one's own horizon, to enhance one's knowledge, or just to experience change.
There are, however, no more Erasmus options in English-speaking countries for non-IBM students. At ESC Rennes one Bachelor student per year can do one term with Erasmus.
I had very good feedback from students who studied in Poland where many seminars were taught in English. This applies to a number of our partner universities. So do consider that option.
Of course, paying fees opens up all of the universities we cooperate with and lots more.
The semester abroad is much more than just an intercultural experience; since it is often no more than four months it is too short to suit that purpose anyway. Use the semester to enhance your skills making it a career milestone. For example, if you are in the Marketing stream here, find a host university that offers seminars in areas we do not cater for. You could do Digital Marketing Communications,International Fashion Marketing, or neuroscientific issues in Marketing. Other areas would be Business Analytics, Business Psychology or many other aspects in Human Resource Management available at many universities in the UK.
However, this enhancement comes at a cost but it will pay off when looking for a job. Whether locations such as Bali or California impress employers is a different matter altogether. They have a touristy feel to them...
In the set of universities that I manage, only ESC Rennes offers Erasmus places, no free UK or US universities. The Department has many Eastern European partner universities and some in western Europe offering English taught classes. Please read the pdf file with general and country-specific information for PG students abroad (when the term cost is used, it is usually only tuition fees).
We are able to offer two students per year a term at ESC Rennes where seminars are taught in English. This term would be eligible for the Erasmus scheme - but conditions may apply.
The coordinator of the MIM scheme ranks applicants according to their academic achievement and the best ones will receive the free place.
Fee payers are free to either use the partner institution or study elsewhere.
There is limited counseling capacity on my part because of the workload connected to the growing number of IBM students and teaching work load. So you need to read this information, download the respective packages and do extensive research yourself.
Toefl equivalent documents can be obtained from me and they work with most partner institutions and worked with others as well.
In the past, students have used service providers like College Contact (for the U.S.), the Ranke-Heinemann Institute or GOstralia (for Australia or New Zealand).
So, before you come and see me as your coordinator for Anglophone universities, read about your options, determine the budget, find programmes that enhance your career, check DAAD funding opportunities etc.
Get your tailored year abroad with us
The choice of one's host university often is as individual as any other big decision in our lives.
Whether you love big places like Manchester or London or it is all about the right specialism, we make sure we are the listening university.
Many students are attracted by a large variety of specialisms and a great location: Manchester Metropolitan University.
However, every year students go out to their chosen locations in their favourite countries.
Remember that some of our partners (no Erasmus) have satellite campuses in interesting regions that would give you an extra boost of cultural competence. So there is a UK university with a Dubai and a Malaysia campus. Guaranteed high levels of PG programmes in Asia and the Middle East.
Check out where the previous cohorts have settled and what degree they chose (list is to be found in the final year information pdf)
The German system requires visiting students to be slightly more proactive and self-organized.
The information and important semester dates for the academic year 2019-20 is to be found here.
Depending on the underlying agreements, students can collect ECTS credits or do a full UG or PG year.
Students have to do a set programme finishing the year with a thesis and a viva. Here is the leaflet giving you the details.
Students do 30 ECTS credits and then write the master's thesis (plus a viva/verbal defence).
Dual degree information
In order to get the German Bachelor (it's a BA, no honours in Germany), you need to complete the full third year all students have to do. Since you've collected 120 ECTS (240 CATS) so far, you will return after the year with us and do your final year; your coordinator will then notify us that you have completed three years in the UK and we can officially award you the degree (because it's a four-year degree here). Every student gets three resits but it is very rare that students fail.
This is the programme:
Complete third year
International Management (6 ECTS)
3 Enhancement Modules A (18 ECTS; 6 ECTS could be Business German)
Economics-related option (6 ECTS)
2 Enhancement Modules B (12 ECTS)
Intercultural Project (3 ECTS)
Bachelor Thesis (13 ECTS)
Viva Voce Exam (2 ECTS)
The A or B modules refer to specialisms; I am not sure what yours currently is but students usually take International Business, Sales, or Logistics as specialisms, then Environmental Policy or Innovation Policy for economics, another one-semester seminar in Marketing and that's it. Then, in May, they register for the thesis, work on it for ten weeks (or slightly less), and then do the viva voce exam (oral exam about the thesis). If the student cannot finish within the second semester ending August 31, there is generally no problem of doing a third Erasmus semester off-campus, so to speak; to finish the thesis and the viva while already back in Manchester.
Sprachenlernen ist ein gelungenes Mix aus Input und Output; generell zeigen sich in den Korrekturen große Defizite in der Erklärungs-, Eleuterungs- oder Darstellungskompetenz. Das bedeutet, dass Studierende nicht mehr genügend im Austausch mit anderen diese Fähigkeiten üben können. Also muss das Ziel sein, unter Studierenden sich gegenseitig Filme, Bücher, Zusammenhänge und anderes Interessante näher zu bringen.
Beim Wissenserwerb geht es generell immer erst um die möglichst realistische Einschätzung der Kompetenzstufe. Dazu werden online kostenlose Tools angeboten, die eine Einstufung ermöglichen.
Dann gilt es, die Lernform zu bestimmen.
Viele Online Plattformen bieten herkömmliches Lernmaterial und Arbeitsformen an. Dazu mehr auf einer gesonderten Seite.
Sollten Sie wie ich besonders gerne hörend lernen, bietet das Internet unzählige Möglichkeiten. Wer mehr Zeit hat, kann mit Youtube Material fantastische Fortschritte machen.
Die Online Wörterbücher sind in jedem Fall hilfreich, auch wenn die Details nur in guten, gedruckten Wörterbüchern abgebildet werden können.
Dazu die passenden Wörterbücher
Eine kostenlose, online IELTS Vorbereitung gibt es hier.
Mein Favorit ist aber die Birkenbihl Methode, die einen ungewohnten Ansatz bietet. Besonders schätze ich das passive Lernen und empfehle Studierenden, mit Hilfe von Videoplatformen das Sprachverständnis auch besonders in der Fachsprache zu verbessern. Der Audio-Sprachkurs Birkenbihl Basiskurs Business Englisch ist für unter 10 Euro auch aus inhaltlichen Gründen interessant (Management Fähigkeiten).
Social Media Möglichkeiten: Sprachtandem Ruhrgebiet
Hier suchen Deutsche und Internationale neugierige Muttersprachler aller Sprachrichtungen (sogar Urdu!):
Das eTandem Projekt an der RUB:
Und am Schluss noch etwas zu Sprachkursen im Ausland.
Meiner Meinung nach sind Sprachkurse an Hochschulen sehr empfehlenswert.
So googelt man einen Hochschul-Kurs in GB - man kann durch Ändern oder Ergänzen der Suchtermini natürlich passendere Ergebnisse erzielen (Beispielsuche).
Der DAAD hat - wie immer - exzellente Informationen zu dem Thema versammelt:
Zur Einschätzung der eigenen Sprachkompetenz gibt es online einige kostenlose Einstufungstests, z.B.
Online business simulations
Free business simulations to practice your English
Business simulations are a great way of practising your strategic skills while using English.
Here are some that are (at least when I checked) free.
Rich Dad (cashflow)
INNOV8 2.0 (business process management)
EIS Simulation (change management)
SimCEO (entrepreneurship and investment)
Many others from MIT Sloane are free but it is impossible to save the game etc without paying.
Almost free for your smartphone:
Hipster CEO (tech startups)
Here is where you can find many more:
Practice makes perfect: reading business texts
Reading business texts will help you greatly when trying to enhance your language competence.
Of course, you can choose a publication like Spotlight. It is well made and offers a great variety of topics and exercises.
For junior students, I always recommend online business news because this source is (still) free.
Here are some sites I often use:
Senior students might want to consider reading texts that correspond to the focal areas in their studies. So a student of Marketing could find marketing texts that enhance the subject-matter competence and the respective language skills.
The best texts in terms of quality can be found using scholar.google.com.
Or these sites to improve your listening comprehension:
And finally, make sure you listen to a lot of factual podcasts - then you'll get closer to the future and reduce VUCA:
The third-year specialisms path the way for a career in business because they offer detailed and hands-on content delivered by the colleagues who worked in business.
I have found that many students, however, pick thesis topics that are less relevant to businesses than they might think. My advice is to first find jobs in your area of specialism and then check the requirements or job description.
For example, if your focus is International Business, you may find a large multinational pharmaceutics company looking for an International Business Development manager. Then, I recommend students to look at what scholar.google.com finds in terms of articles of the past three years to inspire you what you may research on. Most colleagues will be happy about your choice and the way you came to that topic.
Use this Google search : site:stepstone.de neuroscience consumers
The link is this one (in case you cannot find the seminar materials)
Sodmann, Edward. “For better or for worse? - Recent developments in Germany’s transformation to an investor- and employer-friendly country.”, in: Academy of International Business (Ed.). International Business in the 21st Century: Change and Continuity - Strategies, Institutions, Regulations and Operations. Conference Proceedings, Volume II, Manchester: 2001, p. 769-782.
Sodmann, Edward. “The euro-cents abroad: UK Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Germany.”, in: British Chamber of Commerce in Germany (Ed.). BCCG Yearbook 2004. Cologne: 2004, p. 34.
Sodmann, Edward. “Portfolio and Foreign Direct Investment in Germany.”, in: British Chamber of Commerce in Germany (Ed.). BCCG Yearbook 2005. Cologne: 2005, p. 37.
Sodmann, Edward. “Angie in Wonderland: Assessing foreign direct investment and private equity in Germany for 2005.”, in: British Chamber of Commerce in Germany (Ed.). BCCG Yearbook 2006. Cologne: 2006, p. 22-24.
- Developing multinational curricula and study-abroad programmes
- In-house language training strategies
- Train the trainer Business English concepts
- Growth Mindset Strategies
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