Associate professors of the Faculty of Foreign Languages completed a MultiEd internship course in Semiotics of Culture at the University of Tartu (Estonia)
During July 5-15, 2022, the associate professors of the Department of English Philology and Linguodidactics of Zaporizhia National University Maryna Zaluzhna and Olena Luzhanytsia completed the internship course “Yuri Lotman and the Semiotics of Culture: Contemporary Applications” at the University of Tartu (Estonia). The trip to Estonia took place within the scope of the Erasmus+ KA2 international project “Foreign Language Teacher Training Capacity Development as a Way to Ukraine’s Multilingual Education and European Integration / MultiEd”. The organization of the trip was initiated and co-ordinated by the project managers of the University of Tartu Oleksandra Golovko and Kristian Klauks.
During their studies, the participants from the universities of Zaporizhzhia, Poltava, Cherkassy, Ivano-Frankivsk, Ternopil, Bakhmut attended the lectures and seminars given by the teachers of the Department of Semiotics of the University of Tartu, where they discussed current issues of modern science: Yuri Lotman’s ideas of the semiotics of culture, cultural memory, modelling and self-modelling systems, semiotics of space and city, semiotics of translation, transmediality in culture, digital semiosphere, ecosemiotics. The course participants could apply the acquired knowledge by preparing mini-projects, the objectives of which were to conduct field research and present their visions of the city as a text, as well as models for integrating a new cultural object into the semiosphere of the target culture. The considered cases testify to the caring attitude of both Estonians and Ukrainians to their cultural heritage, their efforts to harmoniously combine it with modern innovations and to establish an effective dialogue with other cultures.
The practical part of the internship consisted in the preparation of a manual for the “Language, Culture, and Society” course using the CLIL methodology based on the syllabus which had been developed within the framework of Erasmus+ KA2 “MultiEd” project. The working group’s meetings included the discussion of the structure of the manual and its content. The manual will provide a methodical support for the discipline, and will also be useful to a wide range of teachers of linguistic anthropology, linguistic and cultural studies, and sociolinguistics.
The internship participants were pleasantly surprised by the opportunity to meet Yu. Lotman’s son, who attended one of the classes, expressed his support for Ukrainian teachers and his faith in the victory of the Ukrainian people. But the most vivid impression from the trip was the massive support for our country from Estonian people which the participants felt throughout their stay!
M. Zaluzhna and O. Luzhanytsia express their gratitude to all the internship organizers, and believe that the knowledge acquired during the visit can be applied to improve the course “Language, Culture, and Society”, update other educational disciplines and approaches to their teaching, and will also contribute to a closer co-operation between partner universities. In order to present the experience gained within the internship and spread the results of the “MultiEd” project, the participants plan to hold methodical seminars aimed at professional development of the city and region teachers, interdepartmental seminars for ZNU lecturers, and the preparation of scientific publications and conference reports.