English for Post-secondary Study

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This Course Guide has been taken from the most recent presentation of the course. It would be useful for reference purposes but please note that there may be updates for the following presentation.


English for Post-Secondary Study

Welcome to ENGL E070 — English for Post-Secondary Study.

ENGL E070 is a five-credit, pre-foundation-level course. It is the first in a series of four courses (ENGL E070, ENGL E100, ENGL E200, ENGL E210) designed specifically for Hong Kong students studying in HKMU — to improve their English language proficiency and communication skills.

This Course Guide has been prepared to tell you about the course and how you can work through it. It also gives you information about tutorials and assessment. Please read it carefully before you begin.

ENGL E070, English for Post-Secondary Study, is a self-study course with tutorial support. It provides you with a number of basic strategies to improve your reading and writing skills related to academic study at degree/sub-degree level.

It focuses on the use of language at sentence and paragraph level, through to the construction of a longer text. By the end of the course you should be able to write a short academic essay on a theme. In addition, the course covers the essential grammar related to these tasks.


Course learning outcomes

On completing this course, you should be able to:

  1. Read English texts at pre-foundation level effectively.
  2. Write a simple academic essay using formal academic conventions effectively.
  3. Explain and apply the important structural and functional properties of English texts.
  4. Carry out successfully simple academic tasks requiring an integrated application of reading and writing.

Course overview

The following table provides an overview of the course. It gives you a general idea of the amount of work involved. This schedule includes an allowance to attend tutorials, complete the assignments and to work through the practice activities in each unit.


UnitTitleWeeks of workAssessment
1Text and fluency3 
2Words and meaning3Assignment 1
3Good paragraphs3Assignment 2
4Putting ideas together2 
5Getting started on writing2 
6Producing a text2Assignment 3
 Revision for final examination1 
  16 weeks 


Course materials

Throughout this course you will use the following items:

This Course Guide 

The Course Guide contains everything you need to know about the course. Use this guide to find out about:

  • the course aims and learning objective
  • how the course is structured
  • how you should approach your studies
  • how you will be assessed
  • other useful information to help focus your studies.
Six self-contained study units This course has six self-contained study units. Each one requires two or three weeks of work. The last topic is revision and preparation for the final examination.
An Assignment File The Assignment File contains the three assignments. The procedures for submitting the assignments are explained at the beginning of this file.
Set textbook 

In order to complete this course you will need the following textbook:

  • Swan, M and Walter, C (2011) Oxford English Grammar Course Intermediate, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
A dictionary 

You will also need access to a dictionary, e.g.

  • Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary (2015), 9th edn (with CD-ROM), Oxford: Oxford University Press; or
  • Collins Cobuild Advanced Learner's English Dictionary (2006), London: Harper Collins.

The learning in this course is made up of the following parts:

The study units

 There are six study units in this course, as seen in the Course Overview. You are required to work through each unit at your own pace and complete the activities.

The activities

 The activities help you apply and practise the skills taught so that you can successfully complete the assignments and the final examination. Feedback is provided at the end of each unit.

The tutorials


There are eight two-hour tutorials spread throughout the course, as seen in the Course Overview. Attendance at tutorials is not compulsory, but you are strongly advised to attend them all. The first tutorial is particularly important as your tutor will inform you of the detailed arrangements for the course. The rest will provide:

  • an opportunity to discuss your progress
  • further practice in the skills taught in the materials.

The times, dates and locations for the tutorials will be sent to you before the semester starts.


Your learning approach

We suggest that you approach your learning in the following way:

  1. Read the Course Guide to find out about the course.
  2. Contact your tutor.
  3. Make sure that you have received information about the times, dates and locations of the tutorials.
  4. Turn to Unit 1 and read the Introduction.
  5. Work through Unit 1. Complete the activities as you go. Check your response against the feedback provided at the end of the unit. If necessary re-read parts of Unit 1.
  6. Make a note of any problems and discuss them with your tutor as soon as possible.
  7. Follow the same strategy for each unit. Continue with your Reading Plan throughout the course.
  8. Submit your assignments as required.
  9. Try to attend the tutorial for each unit.
  10. After completing the last unit, review the course and prepare for the end-of-term examination.

Before the course begins you will be advised of the name, address and phone number of your tutor. Make sure that you establish contact as soon as you can.

Your tutor is there to support your study. He/she will:

  • conduct regular tutorials for your group
  • mark and comment on your assignments
  • be available at certain times to help you by phone
  • respond to your emails and your messages posted on the Discussion Board of the Online Learning Environment.

Do not hesitate to contact your tutor if you need help. Please note, however, that it is not his/her role to provide lectures on the course materials. Rather, your tutor will act as a guide, discuss any problems you might have, and to follow up requests for further information and clarification.

There are two methods of assessment in ENGL E070 — English for Post-Secondary Study:

Assignments 40%
A final examination 60%



During this course you will be asked to submit three assignments. Each will be marked by your tutor and all three scores will be counted in the overall continuous assessment.


AssignmentMarking scale scoreCourse value


Detailed information on the requirements and topics for each assignment can be found in the Assignment File. Make sure that your read it carefully before submitting any of the assignments.


A final examination

There will be a three-hour final examination at the end of the course that will account for 60% of your total marks.

It will assess your mastery of the language skills presented throughout the units. If you have attended the tutorials, completed the assignments and acted on your tutor's feedback on your work, you will be well prepared for this exam.

Further information about the examination will be sent to you later in the course.