The Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication was formed in 2006. Today the chair’s staff consists of 11 people, including 9 associate professors, candidates of sciences, one lector, a candidate of sciences, and 1 tutor. N.V. Gurova is the corresponding member of the Academy of Pedagogic and Social Sciences. The average age of the staff is 42 years.
The development as an integrated unit of Pyatigorsk State University with the main objective to form a progressive culture along with professional knowledge production has been the main direction of the chair since its formation. In this connection, training of competitive high-qualified professional and social competent graduates, who would be able to become transformational leaders in their field and who have a progressive transformation-oriented methodology and innovational competency is the basic aim of the chair. This aim’s achievement is made possible by the chair’s staff through direct participation in the formation of an integrated university transformation-oriented, worldview, methodological, and technological environment based on the improvement of innovational educational technologies, broadening of scientific potential, development of social and humanitarian innovations.
The Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communications is a graduating chair on four professional educational programs of bachelor’s, master’s, and postgraduate studies: 45.06.01 Linguistics and Literature Studies (Romance Languages (Spanish Language)); 45.04.02 Linguistics (Contrastive Linguistics and Cultures, and Innovational Strategies of Oral Speech); 45.03.02 Linguistics (Theory and Practice of Intercultural Communication); 45.03.02 Linguistics (Theory and Methods of Foreign Languages and Cultures Teaching), and implements a multi-level training in two forms of education. In addition, the chair’s lectors implement 2 educational programs of higher education and 3 programs of secondary vocational education.
The chair works actively on the development of the education network. This is a relatively new paradigm of educational activity, based on the idea of mass cooperation, an ideology of open educational resources in combination with the network organization of participants’ interaction. The chair has agreements that allow providing the network principle of educational program implementation. Validation of programs, when one institution acknowledges an equivalency of another institution’s program to its own educational programs with transfer credit and disciplines’ cycle is one of the forms of network educational programs implementation in which the Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication participate on a basis of the agreement with Autonomous University of Barcelona. Apart from this long-term partner the chair signed agreements with the following organizations: Institute of Latin America Countries of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Spanish and Russian Center of Language and Culture at Southern Federal University, GOBUS tourism agency, School #29 (Pyatigorsk), Gymnasium #103 (Mineralnye Vody) in order to introduce foreign language practice into an educational process.
The chair organizes a regional scientific and practice seminar with the participation of Spanish language teachers from Stavropol Krai schools in order to discuss the problems of Spanish language teaching methods on different stages of the education.
The tutors of the Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication continue the search for innovational methods and technologies, which would correspond to the demands of higher professional education and provide direct practice-oriented, innovational and technological and/or entrepreneurial direction. Practice-oriented, innovational and project activity was introduced as an obligatory constituent into the new educational programs, work programs, academic aids, programs of year and graduation works. The following methods are among the most efficient tested innovational methods and ways of education, active educational forms, including mini-projects, project activity, applied by the chair’s tutors:
LinguaArt method (revision of the learned material by means of art-technologies) – Associate Professor M.O. Kalintseva;
Clic-method (work with online resources) Associate Professor E.A. Vishnyakova, I.A. Kobyakova, N.I. Filatova and others;
Link-method (summarizing of theoretic material) – Associate Professor N.I. Filatova, Associate Professor M.O. Kalintseva, A.F. Kazancheva;
Hispa-studio method (simulation games, business games, and situations) M.O. Kalintseva, A.F. Kazancheva;
PRISE-method (research problems solution practice) - Associate Professor N.V. Gurova, I.A. Kobyakova, S.V. Sviontkovskaya;
Brainwriting (three-phase model “challenge – content understanding – reflection”, which is terminated by the critical reasoned essay) Associate Professor S.V. Sviontkovskaya;
Profitur portfolio (formation of the electronic portfolio of a student in profession-oriented disciplines) Associate Professor N.I. Filatova;
Flash Studio – project and practice-oriented method (creation of an electronic product in a form of interactive flash animations in given themes) Associate Professor A.F. Kazancheva.
Simulation games (Associate Professor N.I. Filatova, N.V. Gurova, A.F. Kazancheva)
Mental maps building created in software like Photoshop, CorelDraw, as well as using FreeMind - special software for making conceptual maps (Associate Professor N.V. Gurova, I.A. Kobyakova).
The tutors of the Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication actively participate in the educational problems solution and provide extra-mural events or take part in the events, organized at the university. This activity is oriented on the harmonic development of a person, formation of an environment which would provide for the comprehensive development and demonstration of the students’ best qualities, the formation of crucial social competencies. Educational work of the chair is built in accordance with the educational system of PSU in the following directions:
- Patriotic education, political culture, training of a poly-cultural person (We are Russians quiz, devoted to the Day of Constitution; roundtables and meetings with different nationalities students in order to exchange opinions on the cultures, customs, and traditions; student conference “About the Terrorist Threat”; participation in St. George Ribbon event, visits to PSU museum, participation in the quiz, devoted to the history of PSU, materials collection for the PSU museum);
- Education of conscious attitude to labor, necessity and an ability to work (attraction of students to volunteer clean-ups, educational project “Efficient Strategies of Recruitment”, Strategies and Tactics at the Job Interview training, Curriculum Vitae training);
- Ethic and law education, charity work (roundtable on the topic “What Modern Young People Think?” student conference about all the types of addictions Soy adicto y tú?, Los jóvenes contra las drogas (The Youngsters Against Drugs), Swearing Virus event, Rich Out! project, Politeness Day, Donor Day organization);
- Development of an interest to the chosen profession, strengthening of the department’s traditions, professional orientation (Days of Professions, Tourism Week, events, devoted to the outstanding people of Spain and Latin America, competition of the profession-oriented projects like “Routes of the Conscious Tourism in the North Caucasus, Touristic Russia quiz, Tourism Chart).
- Spiritual and aesthetic education (annual festival Roman and German Extravaganza, Spanish language and Culture festival, Literature readings, Contemporary Young People’s Attitude to Ethics, Loyalty and Love, theater studio, literature exhibition 100 Best Modern Spanish Novels, the evening of the outstanding persons, etc);
- A work with I years students (meetings with the students and their parents, work in the student council, and scientific council of the institute, organization of seminars of active students school).
Broadening of the work scales of innovations commercialization, knowledge and technologies transfer, which means their development and promotion from one subject to another, from the university to the real economy sector, may be measured by the indicators such as number of registered intellectual property projects, number of signed license agreements, amount of finance from the knowledge transfer, number of signed agreements on researches and working-outs.
The tutors of the chair together with students created the following intellectual property objects with relative documentation:
Educating computer program “The Adventures of the Little Bird” (Las aventuras del pajarito) – certificate of state registration of software no. 2013616148 dated July 27, 2013.
Electronic academic aid on Japanese hieroglyphics “Around Japan in 80 Hieroglyphs” – certificate of state registration of the database no. 2014620654 dated May 7, 2014.
Mobile application in foreign languages “Walking around Pyatigorsk” – certificate of state registration of the software no. 2015612812 dated February 26, 2015.
Electronic E-menu – certificate of state registration of the software no. 2016660172 dated September 8, 2016.
Aprendemos español – Spanish language textbook – certificate of state registration of the database no. 2017620036 January 11, 2017.
The Chair of Spanish Language and Intercultural Communication actively works on the implementation of such crucial direction as an internationalization of all the activity aspects.
The chair actively collaborates with the Spanish Association of International Collaboration and Development at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Spain, therefore every year the chair invites foreign tutors: 2012 – Eloy Fontan, Pedro Campos; 2013 – Jose Rubio; 2014 – Jose Rubio, Sara Pau Molina, 2015 till now Sara Pau Molina.
A program of exchange education of the IRGLIaHT students in the Autonomous University of Barcelona continues to be developed. Long-time collaboration with the most prestigious Catalonian institution led to the possibility of participation of PSU students who study UAB in 2015-2016 in Erasmus + KA107 Scholarship [A4U] Russia.
A participation in EGPS Project (European Graduate Placement Scheme / prácticas de traducción remuneradas) was made possible due to the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Negotiations with Helen Astley, EGPS Project Manager resulted in the registration of PSU in a Register of Associate Partners of the project.
A program of an intensive course of the foreign language for university groups with rich cultural part was worked out together with Academia Mester (Salamanca) educational center, as a part of the signed collaboration agreement between PSU and Academia Mester.
Every year, based on the agreement with Cervantes Institute, the university provides exams for a Diploma of Spanish Language as Foreign Language (DELE).
The chair continues collaboration with language schools: Internacional House Barcelona, Enforex Barcelona, Delengua, Españolé Internacional House.
The chair also continues work with the following universities in the field of scientific and educational collaboration for the formation of joint programs of double diplomas:
University of La Coruna (La Universidad de La Coruña),
Antonio de Nebrija University (La Universidad Antonio de Nebrija),
University of Barcelona (Universitat de Barcelona).
The Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication together with the Chair of French Philology and Intercultural Communication organized sessions of an international scientific and practice conference UNIVERSUM ROMANUM in 2012, 2014, 2016.
Linguacontent Academic laboratory works at the chair.
Linguocultural and pragmatic aspects of Spanish speaking society communication is the principal theme of the chair’s scientific and research work.
Within this theme, every lecturer is occupied with the working-outs according to his personal interests and professional specialization.
Professor E.N. Pronchenko Peculiarities of the Lexical Part of Oral Speech.
Associate Professor I.A. Kobyakova, Problems of Oral and Non-Verbal Communication of Spanish Speaking Society.
Associate Professor S.V. Sviontkosvskaya, Different-level Characteristics of Different Types of Modern Spanish Discourse.
Associate Professor N.V. Sementsova Phraseology of Spanish Language.
Associate Professor A.S. Potapenko Contrastive Semantic and Pragamatic Studies.
Associate Professor N.I. Filatova Teaching of Spanish for Professional Purposes.
The content of scientific studies carried out at the chair, coincide with the graduates’ majors, their results are broadly used in an educational process, making a base for the textbooks, academic aids, and recommendations, issued by the chair. Theory and Practice of Intercultural Communication is a principal scientific and methodic area of the chair’s academic and methodologic complexes. Apart from that, the chair works out the communicative and cognitive method of more efficient approaches to the students’ linguistic competence development in a process of Spanish language learning. In order to achieve this goal, the chair’s lecturers solves the following issues: communicative and cognitive approach at the formation and development of stylistic competence – Associate Professor N.I. Filatova, cognitive approach in a work with Spanish newspaper text (on materials of contemporary media of Spain) – Associate Professor N.V. Gurova.
The Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication was formed at the Department of Spanish and English Languages as the result of Spanish Language Chair transformation in 2006, initiated by the Dean of Department Elena Nikolaevna Pronchenko for the training of specialists with a qualification of “linguist, specialist of intercultural communication in tourism”. In September 2021 the Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication was added with the Chair of Spanish Language, which worked at the department since 1963 when the question of Spanish language teaching in schools was considered under the Decree of the Council of Ministers of the RSFSR. It was necessary to provide schools with Spanish language teachers in the first place, and a whole range of pedagogic institutes, including Pyatigorsk State Pedagogic Institute of Foreign Languages, started teaching Spanish. The Spaniards, “children of civil war” (Alfonso Moran, Jesus Montes, Echiveria Lirola Alvares), and graduates of Leningrad Pedagogic School (L.A. Lenskaya, Y.A. Sitnov, N.P. Turchenko) were invited to work in the institute. The chair’s lectors began a comprehensive methodologic work. After the Spanish language introduction, the chair’s officers published Spanish language textbooks, necessary for schools. For the period of 1967-1972 three textbooks for middle schools were published by chair’s lecturers K.S. Krichevskaya, Echiveria Lirola Alvares, L.A. Lenskaya, Alfonso Moran Lorenso.
At present, the Chair of Spanish Studies and Intercultural Communication possesses a significant scientific and pedagogic potential. Eight people work here, including 7 associate professors, candidates of sciences and 1 lecturer. The Chair’s staff combines experience and youth uniting lecturers with more than 20-year experience – I.A. Kobyakova, A.S. Potapenko, E.N. Pronchenk, S.V. Sviontkovskaya, N.I. Filatova, and young but very perspective human resources. The average age of the chair equals 42 years.