When Kazakhstan became an inpdendpent country there was a neccesity to develop new approachs in the education system which would be aimed at trainining high -qualified and knowledgable specialists. They should be mobile in the educational space, be ready for dialogue with representatives of different cultures and be responsible for the future of their country and its socio-economic prosperity. One of the main requirements of the success for today's graduate is a foreign language proficiency. So the teachers of foreign languages had to adapt to new life conditions having changed their teaching techniques and approaches.
The knowledge of a foreign language has become indenspensible, especially for young people to participate in social ife of their country. So the teachers of the Deaprtment of Foreign languages had to adapt to these new conditions and change their teaching strategies. Currently the mission of the Deaprtment is to develop intercultural and language students' comptence based on the generally accepted international language level system for practical use of foreign language in everyday and professional spheres.
During the years of Independence the teaching process of foreign language was aimed at developing students' language competencies necessary for conducting a conversation on the professional and everyday topics, reading scientific and socio-political literature, periodicals, in order to learn about a new information on their specialty, making presentations, writing abstracts, letters, scientific papers and essays etc.
Besides the development of language competence the teaching staff of the Department paid a great attention to educational and cultural development of students. To develop the students’ a humanistic worldview and a sense of patriotism, increase students' awareness of cultural traditions and customs teachers used special educational, linguistic and cultural materials .
In 1994-2020 the chair of foreign languages of natural faculties was headed by, Muldagalieva A.A. associate professor. Aizhan Aidyngalievna created a friendly and hardworking team, many members of this team are still at the department: Sh.B. Gumarova, Z.K. Madieva, I. V. Blavachinskaya, I. A. Baimuratova, A.G. Shayakhmet, K.A. Aisultanova, B.N. Bekmasheva, K.A. Zhirenshina, B.B. Tuleubaeva, K.Kh. ZhubanovaA, Z.A. Tleugabylova, L. Aliyarova, D.M. Makhmetova, I. G. Orazbekova, E.I. Lugovskaya, B.I. Tastemirova, N.L. Lomachenko and others. She has always paid a great attention to the improvement of the language and methodological skills of the teachers of the department. The selection of the staff was carried out based on professional and personal qualities, namely, a high competence of a foreign language, eagerness to constantly improve their methodological and language comptences and responsible attitude to professional duties. Over the years, the methodology of teaching English has changed significantly. The experience of leading foreign universities such as the University of Pennsylvania, University of California, U.S.A., Irvine, King's college London UK, etc., as well as digital educational tools: Kahoot, Quizizz, Quizlet, Google Forms, have been successfully implemented and used by the teachers. The methods of conducting classes on platforms of augmented or virtual reality: SpatialChat // Spatial Mozilla Hubs, Hubs by Mozill were actively employed. The teachers of the department began to actively apply innovative forms of education: role-playing games, the project method, case studies, techniques of critical thinking technology, etc. With the transition of classes to the distance learning, the teachers of the department made efforts to introduce new technologies into the educational process. Under the leadership of A.A. Akhmetova , Director of the Institute of New Learning Technologies and Muldagalieva A.A. senior teachers U.B. Adilbaeva, S.A. Urazgalieva, G.A. Gaipova, A. Rezhep, and A. Dzhanuzakova developed online course "Agylshyn tili" which is actevely used in the educational process. Currently, intensive work is underway to create a SPOC (Small Private On Line Course), the launch of which is planned for the 2021-2022 academic year. The following teachers are working now to create SPOC for the master degree program students and bachelor's degree students :
senior teacher. Gayipova G.A. - SPOC for for foreign students of upper-intermediate level;
senior teacher Musanova G.A. - SPOS for master's degree students of the Faculty of Law,
Assoc. Muldagalieva A.A. and senior teacher Dzhanuzakova A.A. - SPOC for master's degree students of Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology;
senior teacher Tleugabylova Z.A. SPOC for master's degree student of the Higher School of Economics and Business;
Rezhep A.S. SPOC for maste's degree r students of the Faculty of Information Technologies;
senior teacher Urazgalieva S.A. SPOC for master's degree students of the Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics;
senior teacher Duysenbaeva Sh.S. SPOC for master's degree of the Faculty of Information Technology;
senior teacher Aliyarova L.M. SPOC for master's degree of the Faculty of History, Ethnology and Archeology;
M. Myrzakhmet SPOC for bachelor's degree of all specialties;
Associate Professor A.A. Muldagalieva and senior teacher Dzhanuzakova A.A. are developing MOOCs for Academic writing for master's degree students of all Faculties.
In order to improve the methodological qualification, a methodological seminars are conducted at the department on the regular basis where teachers make presentations on the implementation of effective techniques for teaching foreign languages. The teachers of the Department participate in international scientific and methodological conferences organized by our university, as well as other universities of Kazakhstan . In 2017, the Department organized and held an international online scientific and methodological conference "CURRENT PROBLEMS OF MULTILINGUIMS AND TEACHING FOREIGN LANGUAGES IN NON-LANGUAGE UNIVERSITIES". The teachers from various regional universities of Kazakhstan as well as from near and far abroad: the USA, Romania, Malaysia, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, etc took part in the conference. The teachers, doctoral students from other departments of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University also participated. 80 teachers took part. 44 articles in English, Russian and Kazakh languages were presented at the conference. At the end of the conference, the Publishing House of Al-Farabi KazNU published a collection of the conference materials, all conference participants recieved certificates. In addition, the conference materials were published in PDF format on the website www.kaznu.kz and sent to the participants by e-mail together with the participation certificates. To improve the language skills of the teachers of the Department, Jason Kopp (Manager of Global Sourse Net) was invited. He had been teaching Conversational English classes and preparing for international exams: TOEFL and IELTS for 5 years. At the end of the seminar, the teachers of the Department received 72 hour certificates .
The educational process is constantly provided with high-quality teaching aids prepared by the teachers of the department: Textbook "Simple Chemistry" (Makhmetova D.M., Lugovskaya E.I., Bekmashova B.N.), "English for Maths and Information Science students" (Omarova Sh.B., Lomachenko N.L., Sabyrbaeva N Nabizhankyzy Z.), “English for Students of Economic Specialties” (Okusheva G.T. , Isabaeva B., Nurmukhanbetova A.A.), “English for astronomers” (Ilakhunova D.D., Sabyrbaeva N.K., Makhmetova D.M.), English for specific purposes for masters of chemical specialties (Makhmetova D. M., Lugovskaya E.I., Nessipbaeva Z.S., Gumarova Sh.B.), Zhirenshina K.A. ("Deutsch". A textbook on the German language for students of the Faculty of Geography. "), Zhirenshina K.A. (Russian-Kazakh-German Dictionary of Geogrpahical Terms which was recognized as one of the best teaching aids at the university). The publishing house of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University organized a conference on the presentation of this dictionary. For many years, the teachers were members of the Commission for considering appeals against the results of entrance examinations to master and PhD program (Lugovskaya I.V., Zhirenshina K.A., B.N. Orazaeva G.A., Blavachinskaya I.V., Tuleubaeva B. B., Lomachenko N.). The teachers of the department participate in organizing and conducting the annual subject Olympiad of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University for schoolchildren. Test assignments in English and German are prepared. (Atabaeva G.K., Tleugabylova Z.A., Aisultanova K.A., Zhirenshina K.A.).
In April 2018, by the invitation of the Department, Professor of the University of Leicester Agnetta Svalberg delivered two-week seminar: "New technologies in teaching English for university teachers.
The Department always has paid and pays a special attention to educational activities. All educational activities were aimed at the implementation of complex problem solving. All the events are conducted in English and German. By participating in educational events, students received an excellent opportunity to develop their speaking skills and gained the confiedence in their knowledge. The plan of educational work is usually made based on the professional orientation of the faculties where student are trained. Historical dates, official holidays, national customs, outstanding people of a particular country are also included in the plan of the events organized by the Department. The Clubs of the Department have begun their active work recently. There are 16 English clubs at the department: “English Club”, “LINGUA”, “Club of English song lovers”, “Yes I can”, etc. The department also has a German Club ":" Deutsch im Herzen " headed by the senior teacher Zhirenshina K.A. She is a member of the Association of German Teachers of Kazakhstan and has been actively cooperating with Goethe Institute in Almaty for many years. Her students are actively involved in the events organized by the Goethe-Institute. So, the students of the Faculty of Geography and Nature Management took the 2nd place participating in the City Competition of German songs!
In recent years, the clubs have strated working at the international and Republican levels, with students from other universities of Kazakhstan. The students from Uralsk , Semipalatinsk, Chimkent, Pavlodar actively participate in the club meetings. Events are conducted remotely in the form of a teleconference. For many years, the Department of Foreign Languages has been carrying out events within the framework of the university projects: "100 books", "Brighten the corner where you are" "Healthy lifestyle", "Green campus", "Virtous City". The department had been responsible for holding events within the framework of the project "Brighten the corner where you are" for 10 years and the teachers were awarded "Letter of Thanks" for the successful implementation of this project many times. Events dedicated to the anniversaries of outstanding personalities, for example, Abay’s 175th anniversary and Al-Farabi’s 1150th anniversary, the 30th anniversary of the Independence of Kazakhstan, the anniversaries of prominent personalities of Kazakhstan: A. Bukeikhanov, M. Makatayev, D. Dzhabayev, etc., were successfully held in the form of round tables, conferences, discussions, etc.
The teachers conducted these significant events at the international level with students from China, the USA, the Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Indonesia. Every year, the department has held and continues conducting the conference "Advancing skills towards professional skills" for master's degree students where master students make speeches in English on the topics of their dissertations. The ultimate goal of this conference is to develop master students’ public-speaking, listening and writing skills. An enmours work is done by the teachers and master students to prepare a good presentation in a foreign language and report it before a large audience. The topics of the conference reports are chosen by the master students themselves. As a rule, they prepare a report on the topic of their dissertations or on topics which is of an interest to them. The value of this conference is the moral satisfaction received by master students from the results of their work.
The eagerness of our students to learn foreign languages has increased because of high motivation. Our students actively take part in all the events organized by our department: they prepare scenes in English and German, sing songs, read poems, make presentations, and prepare posters. It should be especially noted that the interest of modern Kazakhstani youth in learning a foreign language has risen significantly. The knowledge of a foreign language is a vital factor that increases their competitiveness and help them to achieve personal goals and success. The staff of the department actively cooperates with the Institute for Advanced Studies of the University. Together with the Institute for Advanced Studies, the teaching staff of the Department took an active part in the project initiated by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan within the framework of the Government Assignment to implement Program 224 "Advanced training and retraining of personnel of state organizations of higher and postgraduate education" in the specialties "5B011000 - Physics" and "5B011300 - Biology". 400 university teachers from different regions of Kazakhstan were trained by this program at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University. To make the training of the university teachers more efficient the course participants were trained both offline and online. Online traning was 260 academic hours. The experience of the universities which train specialists within the framework of the State Program of Innovative and Industrial Development was taken into account during the traning of the university teaching staff delivering courses on Physics and Biology in English. The teachers of the department prepared a curriculum, teaching aids, an on-line training course and progress tests for the evaluations of skills received by the course participants. They also conducted practical classes in English for the teachers of physics, chemistry and biology. In addition, the textbooks for teaching English for teachers and students of physics and biology were republished. The authors of these textbooks were the teachers of the Department: L.E. Strautman. (in physics) and Blavachinskaya I.V. and Tuleubaeva B.B. (in biology). Each textbook was published in 400 copies and they are still successfully employed in the educational process. At the end of the course, the teachers of the department went to different regions of the Republic to take the final exam from the course participants . Based on the results of the final exam, all teachers who completed English language courses at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University were given certificates in two languages. The certificates indicated the level of English.
Together with the Institute of the Advanced Studies of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, English and German language courses are also conducted for teachers of Kazakhstani schools and universities. So, in January 2020 English language courses were held for the teachers of Z. Aldamzhar Kostanay Social and Technical University (Muldagalieva A.A., Mikhalchenko E.N.) and German courses were held for the teachers of the German-Kazakhstan University in November 2020 (Zhirenshina K.A.). For more than 10 years, iLC KazNU language center has been operating at the Department. The center was organized by Associate Professor A.A. Muldagalieva. English language courses are held for teachers of schools and higher educational institutions of the Republic, students, master students, PhD students and employees of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University. In 2019 at the Department KazNUTOEFL Center was established which was accredited by the International Company ETS GLOBLE. The Center purpose is to provide everyone with an opportunity to officially confirm their level of English for further study at foreign universities, to participate in international educational programs in English, to determine the level of proficiency in English as a foreign language. KazNUTOEFL Center conducted courses for preparing master students for international exams and an intensive course in English for applicants for master and PhD programs. For several years, the teachers of the Department were the members the commission which monitors the quality of delivering the courses on specialty in English at Natural Science and Humanitarian Faculties. The commission was created by the initiative of the Department of Academic Affairs. Muldagalieva A.A., Okusheva G.T., Blavachinskaya I.V., Omarova Sh.B., Madieva Z.K., Makhmetova Zh.M., Strautman L.E. were the members of this commission. For many years, the teachers of the Department have been engaged in translation activities. By the assignment of the University Departments and Administration, we translated documents, reports, speeches and articles into English, Kazakh, Russian. The teachers of the Department also edited the English version of the website of the University and all Departments of the Natural Science and Humanitarian Faculties. All these years, the teachers, A.A. Muldagalieva, G.T. Okusheva, Z.K. Madieva, I.V. Blavachinskaya, K.A. Zhirenshina. , Gumarova Sh.B. were the experts and took part in the preparation of the test tasks for the External Evaluation of Academic Achievements of students.
Teachers write about their work in international, regional, Republican mass media materials: "Turki Alemi", "Deutsche Allegemeine Zeitung", Ontustik Rabat, "Kazyurt Tynysy", "Jetisu" , “Sken өңir” (Shardara audandyk, қoғamdyk sayasi akparatttyk zharnamalyk gazeti), “Otyrar alқaby” (Audandyk қoғamdyk-sayasi aptalyk newspapers), “Zhaңa zhetisay,” Zharqyn Bolashaq "Republican scientific and methodological journal, as well as in the University newspaper" Kazakh University ". Muldagalieva A.A. is responsible for collecting, editing and preparing material in English for "Kazakh University" newspaper. For excellent and good pedagogical work, A.A. Muldagalieva and her team were awarded the Honorary Diploma by N.A. Nazarbayev., the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan.