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Learn Academic English with Cambridge Academic English B1+ Intermediate Student's Book



Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308: A Review




If you are looking for a comprehensive and engaging coursebook to improve your academic English skills at the intermediate level, you might want to consider Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308. This book is part of a series of integrated skills courses for EAP (English for Academic Purposes) developed by Cambridge University Press. In this article, I will review the book and provide some tips on how to use it effectively. I will also discuss its strengths and weaknesses and compare it with other similar books on the market.




cambridge academic english b1 intermediate student's book 308



What is Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308?




Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 is a coursebook designed for students who want to develop their academic English skills at the B1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). The book covers all four skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) as well as vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation. It also focuses on developing academic study skills such as note-taking, summarizing, referencing and critical thinking.


The aim and scope of the book




The aim of the book is to help students prepare for academic study in English-medium universities or colleges. The book covers a range of topics that are relevant and interesting for intermediate-level students, such as education, culture, technology, health and environment. The book also exposes students to different types of academic texts and tasks, such as lectures, seminars, essays, reports and presentations. The book follows a corpus-informed approach, which means that it uses authentic language data from academic sources to inform its content and activities.


The structure and content of the book




The book consists of ten units, each focusing on a different topic and skill area. Each unit has four main sections: Prepare to listen, Prepare to speak, Prepare to read and Prepare to write. Each section contains a variety of activities that help students develop their language and study skills in relation to the topic and task. Each unit also has a Review section that consolidates the main points of the unit and provides further practice. At the end of the book, there is a Glossary that explains key vocabulary items from the units, a Grammar reference that summarizes key grammar points from the units, and an Answer key that provides answers to all the exercises in the book.


The features and benefits of the book




The book has many features that make it an effective and enjoyable learning resource for students. Some of these features are:



  • Clear learning outcomes: Each unit starts with a list of learning outcomes that state what students will be able to do by the end of the unit. This helps students set clear goals and monitor their progress.



  • Engaging topics and tasks: The topics and tasks in the book are relevant, interesting and challenging for intermediate-level students. They reflect the diversity and complexity of academic disciplines and genres. They also encourage students to express their opinions, share their experiences and compare different perspectives.



  • Authentic texts and audio: The texts and audio in the book are taken from real academic sources, such as books, journals, websites, podcasts and lectures. They expose students to a range of academic styles, registers and accents. They also provide models of good academic practice and language use.



  • Interactive activities: The activities in the book are designed to promote interaction and collaboration among students. They require students to work in pairs or groups, exchange information, give feedback and negotiate meaning. They also foster critical thinking and problem-solving skills.



  • Personalized feedback: The book provides opportunities for students to check their own work and receive feedback from their peers or teachers. For example, there are self-check boxes, peer-review checklists and teacher's comments boxes in the book. These help students identify their strengths and weaknesses and improve their performance.



  • Additional resources: The book comes with a CD-ROM that contains additional listening and speaking material for each unit. There is also a DVD that contains video clips of authentic academic situations, such as lectures, seminars and presentations. These provide further exposure and practice for students. Moreover, there is a Teacher's Book that contains detailed teaching notes, answer keys, transcripts, photocopiable worksheets and tests for each unit.



How to use Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 effectively?




Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 can be used as a core coursebook for an EAP course or as a supplementary material for a general English course. It can also be used for self-study or revision purposes. Here are some tips on how to use the book effectively depending on your role and situation.


Tips for students




Before you start





  • Assess your level: Before you start using the book, you should assess your current level of English and make sure that it matches the level of the book. You can use the placement test provided by Cambridge University Press or any other reliable test to determine your level.



  • Familiarize yourself with the book: Before you start working on the units, you should familiarize yourself with the structure and content of the book. You should read the introduction, look at the table of contents, browse through the units and check the glossary, grammar reference and answer key. This will help you get an overview of what the book offers and how it is organized.



  • Set your goals: Before you start working on each unit, you should read the learning outcomes and think about what you want to achieve by the end of the unit. You should also think about how the unit relates to your academic needs and interests. This will help you set clear and realistic goals and motivate you to work on the unit.



During the course





  • Follow the instructions: During the course, you should follow the instructions given in the book carefully. You should do all the activities in the order they appear in the book. You should also pay attention to the icons, symbols and headings that guide you through the activities. This will help you complete the activities correctly and efficiently.



  • Use all the resources: During the course, you should use all the resources that come with the book. You should listen to the CD-ROM and watch the DVD regularly. You should also consult the glossary, grammar reference and answer key whenever you need them. This will help you enhance your learning experience and outcomes.



  • Interact with others: During the course, you should interact with other students as much as possible. You should work in pairs or groups whenever possible. You should also participate actively in class discussions and presentations. This will help you develop your communication skills and learn from others.



After you finish





  • Review your work: After you finish each unit, you should review your work and reflect on your progress. You should check your answers with the answer key or with your peers or teacher. You should also look at the feedback you received from others or yourself. This will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and plan your next steps.



Tips for teachers




Planning and preparing





  • Analyze your students: Before you start teaching the book, you should analyze your students' level, needs and interests. You should also consider their academic background, goals and expectations. This will help you adapt the book to suit your students' situation and preferences.



  • Organize your course: Before you start teaching the book, you should organize your course in terms of time, space and resources. You should decide how many units you will cover, how long each unit will take, how often you will meet and where you will teach. You should also make sure that you have all the necessary equipment and materials to use the book effectively.



  • Prepare your lessons: Before you start teaching each unit, you should prepare your lessons carefully. You should read the teacher's notes, look at the answer keys and transcripts, watch the video clips and listen to the audio tracks. You should also select and adapt the activities that suit your students' level and needs. This will help you deliver your lessons smoothly and confidently.



Teaching and assessing





  • Guide your students: During the course, you should guide your students through the book in a clear and supportive way. You should explain the aims and outcomes of each unit and section. You should also provide clear instructions, examples and models for each activity. This will help your students understand what they are doing and why they are doing it.



  • Monitor your students: During the course, you should monitor your students' work and progress closely. You should observe their performance, check their answers, give feedback and correct errors. You should also encourage them to self-check, peer-review and reflect on their work. This will help your students improve their skills and confidence.



  • Evaluate your students: During the course, you should evaluate your students' achievements and difficulties regularly. You should use formal and informal methods of assessment, such as tests, quizzes, portfolios and observations. You should also provide grades, comments and suggestions for improvement. This will help your students measure their progress and identify their goals.



Evaluating and improving





  • Review your course: After you finish teaching the book, you should review your course and reflect on its effectiveness. You should consider the strengths and weaknesses of the book, your teaching methods and your students' results. You should also collect feedback from your students and colleagues. This will help you evaluate your teaching practice and outcomes.



  • Update your knowledge: After you finish teaching the book, you should update your knowledge of academic English and EAP methodology. You should read relevant books, articles and blogs. You should also attend workshops, webinars and conferences. This will help you keep up with the latest developments and trends in the field.



  • Renew your resources: After you finish teaching the book, you should renew your resources for future courses. You should look for new texts, audio and video materials that match your students' level and needs. You should also create or find new activities, worksheets and tests that complement or supplement the book. This will help you diversify your teaching materials and strategies.



What are the strengths and weaknesses of Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308?




Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 is a well-designed and well-written coursebook that offers many advantages for both students and teachers. However, like any other coursebook, it also has some limitations that need to be considered. Here are some of the strengths and weaknesses of the book.


The strengths of the book




The book has many strengths that make it a valuable learning resource for intermediate-level students of academic English. Some of these strengths are:



  • It is comprehensive: The book covers all four skills as well as vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation in an integrated way. It also develops academic study skills that are essential for successful academic performance.



  • It is relevant: The book covers topics that are interesting and important for intermediate-level students from different academic disciplines and backgrounds. It also exposes them to different types of academic texts and tasks that they are likely to encounter in their academic studies.



  • It is authentic: The book uses texts and audio that are taken from real academic sources and situations. It also provides video clips that show authentic academic scenarios and interactions.



  • It is interactive: The book provides activities that promote interaction and collaboration among students. It also fosters critical thinking and problem-solving skills.



  • It is personalized: The book provides opportunities for students to check their own work and receive feedback from others. It also encourages them to express their opinions, share their experiences and compare different perspectives.



  • It is supported: The book comes with additional resources that enhance the learning experience and outcomes. It also has a teacher's book that provides detailed guidance and support for teachers.



The weaknesses of the book




The book has some weaknesses that may limit its effectiveness or suitability for some students or teachers. Some of these weaknesses are:



  • It is challenging: The book may be too challenging for some students who are not used to working with authentic academic texts and tasks. It may also be too challenging for some teachers who are not familiar with academic English or EAP methodology.



  • It is demanding: The book may be too demanding for some students who do not have enough time or motivation to complete all the activities and exercises in the book. It may also be too demanding for some teachers who do not have enough resources or support to use the book effectively.



  • It is limited: The book may not cover all the topics or skills that some students or teachers need or want to learn or teach. It may also not suit all the learning styles or preferences of some students or teachers.



The comparison with other similar books




The book is one of the many coursebooks available for intermediate-level students of academic English. Some of the other similar books on the market are:



  • Oxford EAP B1+ Intermediate Student's Book by Edward de Chazal and Sam McCarter (Oxford University Press, 2013)



  • English for Academic Study: Reading & Writing Source Book - Edition 2 by John Slaght and Anne Pallant (Garnet Education, 2012)



  • Academic Encounters Level 3 Student's Book Reading and Writing: Life in Society by Jessica Williams and Kristine Brown (Cambridge University Press, 2012)



All these books have similar aims, scope and structure as Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308. They also have similar features, benefits and limitations. However, they differ in some aspects, such as the topics, texts, tasks, activities, resources and support they offer. Therefore, students and teachers should compare different books and choose the one that best suits their level, needs and interests.


Conclusion and FAQs




In conclusion, Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 is a high-quality coursebook that can help intermediate-level students improve their academic English skills and prepare for academic study in English-medium universities or colleges. The book has many strengths that outweigh its weaknesses, and it can be used effectively by both students and teachers in different situations and contexts. However, the book is not perfect or suitable for everyone, so it should be used with caution and adaptation. Here are some FAQs that may help you decide whether to use the book or not.



  • Is the book suitable for my level?



The book is suitable for students who have a B1 level of English according to the CEFR. This means that they can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. They can also deal with most situations likely to arise while travelling in an area where English is spoken. They can produce simple connected text on topics that are familiar or of personal interest. They can also describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.


  • Is the book suitable for my needs?



The book is suitable for students who need to develop their academic English skills for academic study in English-medium universities or colleges. This means that they need to be able to understand and produce different types of academic texts and tasks, such as lectures, seminars, essays, reports and presentations. They also need to develop their academic study skills, such as note-taking, summarizing, referencing and critical thinking.


  • Is the book suitable for my interests?



are relevant and important for intermediate-level students from different academic disciplines and backgrounds. These topics include education, culture, technology, health and environment. The book also exposes them to different perspectives and opinions on these topics and encourages them to express their own views and experiences.


  • Is the book suitable for my situation?



The book is suitable for students who are in a situation where they can use the book as a core coursebook for an EAP course or as a supplementary material for a general English course. It is also suitable for students who are in a situation where they can use the book for self-study or revision purposes. However, the book may not be suitable for students who are in a situation where they have limited time, resources or support to use the book effectively.


  • Is the book suitable for my preferences?



The book is suitable for students who prefer a coursebook that is comprehensive, relevant, authentic, interactive and personalized. It is also suitable for students who prefer a coursebook that is supported by additional resources and guidance. However, the book may not be suitable for students who prefer a coursebook that is less challenging, less demanding or more flexible.


I hope this article has given you a clear and comprehensive overview of Cambridge Academic English B1 Intermediate Student's Book 308 and helped you decide whether to use it or not. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me. Thank you for reading! 71b2f0854b


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