Vera Zabotkina — PhD, professor, Vice-Rector for Innovative International projects, Director of the Centre for Cognitive Programs and Technologies, and Professor of English at the Department of Translation Studies, Interpreting and Translation at the Russian State University for the Humanities. She previously studied at University College London (UCL) English department and is one of the founding figures of the Russian school of cognitive neology. She has authored over 200 publications on issues associated with English vocabulary growth, changes in the English conceptual worldview, pragmatics, conceptual semantics, and cognitive linguistics. She is also a member of the following professional bodies and associations: International Association of University Professors of English (IAUPE), Linguistic Association of teachers of English (LATEUM), National Asssociation of Teachers of English in Russia (NATE), International Pragmatics Association (IPRA), International Association of Cognitive Studies (CogSci), International Association of Cognitive Linguists (ICLA). She is a member of the “Distributed language group” (University of Hertfordshire, UK), and a member of the following editorial boards: “Culture and Brain” (Springer), “Psychology in Russia: State-of-the-Art” and “Studio” at St. Petersburg University. She is a freelance member of the Board of the Centre for the Humanities at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.
Topic: Essential skills for academic success
In this session we try to shed some light on how to get to grips with the difference in Russian and English academic writing traditions.
We argue the importance of competence-based approach to mastering academic English. According to OEDC, language competences are among the most demanded competences of the 21st century (skills of negotiating, argumentation in the dialogue, speaking and writing foreign language etc.). We concentrate on the essential language skills for achieving success in academic career (mostly for early- and mid-career scholars). Despite the fact that the academic research shares the same universal values, there are differences in academic writing cultures. Each culture has its own set of models and intellectual styles. The session will provide some insights and practical recommendations on how to write proper academic articles for international peer-reviewed journals. The emphasis will be on the differences in the structure of paragraphs, sentences, the choice of nouns and clichés (linguistic zombies), the ways of argumentation and how the thought is made visible through proper academic writing.
Video recording of the plenary session
You can watch the full recording of Vera I. Zabotkina’s talk on British Council Russia’s YouTube channel by clicking the link below
In this interview, Vera talks about why academic writing has become such an important issue in Russia. She discusses linguistic 'zombies', or the use of clichés in academic writing, and the extent to which they be used. She also looks at some of the common mistakes that are made by academics in their writing.
Watch the recording using the link below:
As part of the interview, Vera also answered some of the questions that our online audience asked. Read the questions and his answers below:
To the Levi-Strauss quotation. Which ways, which methods do you suppose the Humanities can rule in the 21st century?
The best methods and methodology through which the Humanities can rule the 21 century are interdisciplinary ones which integrate Linguistics and Psychology, Philosophy and Anthropology, History and Philology.
How learners should be effectively exposed to different academic writing cultures?
The learners should have an access to International Journals in English and in Russian.