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The Department of Foreign Languages is one of the oldest departments at Zaporizhzhia National Technical University. The Department was founded as a part of the Automotive and Mechanical Institute on the basis of the Decree № 6226 issued by the State Committee of Defense (dated by July 21, 1944) and by the order of the Secondary Education People's Commissariat (dated by July 31, 1944).

Since its foundation in 1944 the Department was headed by the Senior Lecturer Leonid A. Bohdanov. In 1960 he was succeeded by Ahaphiia P. Semashko, Associate Professor, the author of multiple textbooks in French for technical higher educational establishments. Since 1988 up to now the Department has been headed by Yuliya O. Sobol, PhD (Philology), Associate Professor.

English, German, French and later on Spanish were being taught here.

The period from 1960 to 2000 was replete with meaningful events in the life of the Department.

— December, 1960. First course project in a foreign language was defended.

— April, 1961. The Department was represented as “Philology Workshop” (later “Foreign Languages Workshop”) at the annual scientific and technical institute conference.

— May, 1961. Six diploma projects were defended in English for the first time. Since then the defense of course and diploma projects in foreign languages has become a tradition.

In order to increase the efficiency of education the lecturers used any available opportunities to practice foreign languages:

— the “English Learners’ Club” (“Physicists and Lyricists”) was founded;

— the “Students’ Lecturing Bureau” was established;

— since 1970 students took part in republican students’ conferences where foreign languages were used;

— students regularly participated in the contests of R&D projects in History and Cultural Studies with the use of foreign sources;

— students’ theatre “Blender” staging performances in English on the occasion of the prominent events in the life of the university and mass celebrations such as New Year, St. Valentine’s Day, the 8th of March, etc. was organized by the Senior Lecturer Halina I. Bulyhina in 2003.

Since late 1960s groups of students with a high proficiency in foreign languages were formed. Since middle 1980s the best alumni of these groups were given a certificate to acknowledge that the students successfully mastered the course in Technical Translation.

At the turn of the XXIst century, when the credit system was introduced at ZNTU with the compulsory study of foreign languages for three terms, students with a high proficiency in English up to 2015-2016 educational year had been enjoying the opportunity to enhance their knowledge and hone their skills for another five terms. When the students proved their expertise at the qualification exam, they were given the aforementioned certificate to acknowledge their proficiency in Technical Translation.

The graduates of the groups with advanced language learning have won the recognition outside Zaporizhzhia and Ukraine. This contributed to the prestige and authority of our Alma Mater among the educational establishments of Ukraine and motivated students of Technical Sciences and Economics to learn foreign languages.

In 1973 Russian Language Division was formed within the Department of Foreign Languages. Later on it separated and became the Department of Russian Language in 1978.

In 1994 exams in foreign language were introduced for the university entrants at some specialities.

From 1992 to 1995 the lecturers from the USA were carrying out intensive language training at the Department. They conducted daily workshops for the staff of the Department as well as professors of technical departments. It was the time when Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) was implemented at our University – several groups of students specializing in Materials Sciences and Electricity were being taught in English. Nowadays the students of the Electrical Engineering Faculty whose speciality is “Electrical Apparatuses” are taught in English.

The alumni of the groups are highly competitive and demanded by both domestic and foreign enterprises.

In September, 2002, the Department began to train students in the speciality “Technical Translation” (specialization in metallurgy, machine-building, electrical equipment and computers). In addition to the traditional disciplines of all-educational and philological cycles, some technical subjects taught in English were also included into the curriculum of the would-be translators. Present Department of Theory and Practice of Translation has branched off the Department of Foreign Languages.

Nowadays the following activities are still being carried out at the Department of Foreign Languages:

— annual conferences in foreign languages are held;

— translations for major departments at Zaporizhzhia National Technical University and enterprises of Zaporizhzhia are made on a regular basis by the students under the supervision of the Department staff;

— annual contests in foreign languages are organized.

Since 2011, after ZNTU got involved in the reform of the Ukrainian educational system in the course of Bologna process, the Department has been busy with translating into English the topics of the diploma projects and the enclosures to the European-pattern diplomas issued to the university alumni.

The Department has been continually working on the manuals, guidances, reference books in foreign languages, particularly English, German and French for specific purposes.

In 2015 Yuliya O. Sobol, PhD (Philology), Associate Professor, and V. H. Kuzmenko, Senior Lecturer, published the textbook “English for Electrical Engineering Students”.

The staff of the Department of Foreign Languages have been regularly exchanging working experience with the workers of other educational establishments. The teachers of Zaporizhzhia National University, Zaporizhzhia State Engineering Academy, the State Higher Educational Establishment “Zaporizhzhia Construction College”, etc., undergo training here.

The Department has been constantly carrying out scientific researches.

In 1986 Yuliya O. Sobol defended her Thesis for the PhD (Philology), speciality 10.02.04 – Germanic Languages, at Leningrad State University named after A. A. Zhdanov (Language Contacts in the Upper Middle West dialects of the USA (vocal systems interaction)).

In 2011 Nataliia M. Zhukova defended her Thesis for the PhD (Philology), speciality 10.02.04 – Germanic Languages, at Odesa Illia Mechnikov National University (The Role of the Argot Subculture in the Formation of the Australian English World View in the late XVIIIth – middle XIXth centuries).

In 2014 Olha V. Adamenko defended her Thesis for the PhD (Philology), speciality 10.02.04 – Germanic Languages, at Zaporizhzhia National University (The verbalization of gender stereotypes in English fiction (on the material of the English romance of the beginning of the XX - end of the XXI centuries)).

The staff of the Department have also been taking part in the conferences held in Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the United States of America, the Czech Republic and Germany together with the representatives of the scientific community from all over the world.

The results of the scientific researches carried out by the PhDs (Philology) and the degree-seeking students have been published in various journals specialized in linguistics and pedagogics in Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the United States of America, the Czech Republic and Germany.

Since 2003 the staff of the Department supervised by Yuliya O. Sobol, PhD (Philology), Associate Professor, have been working on the following topics:

from 2003 to 2006 – “Peculiarities of the Language in Scientific and Technical Literature”,

from 2006 to 2009 – “Formation and Functioning of Scientific and Technical Terminology”,

from 2009 to 2012 – “Communicative Peculiarities of Scientific and Technical Discourse”;

from 2012 to 2015 – “Interference Problems in the Course of Foreign Languages Acquisition”.

The most interesting aspects and conclusions were represented in the final summary reports as well as in the published articles and presentations delivered at the conferences.

Now the Department is carrying out the research on the topic “Verbal Means of Professional Communication”.

The staff of the Department have always been looking for the efficient methods of teaching foreign languages. Innovative methods, implementation of the differential, communicative, role-oriented, CLIL approaches, usage of multimedia in education contributes to the successful foreign language acquisition by the alumni of Zaporizhzhia National Technical University.