Advanced Business English

Course Leader: Dr Sabina Osmanovic

Home Institution: University of New York Tirana, Albania

Course Overview
This course presents and reinforces business terminology and usage by providing an introduction to various business situations and business categories. The focus will be on the development of relevant written and verbal skills, as well as on their application in a variety of business documents written for specific audiences and professional situations. The course also presents students with relevant readings that will enhance their understanding of important historical and cultural developments in the world of business and work relations.
Although the skills learned through other academic English courses will be valuable for this class, the curriculum of this course makes a fine distinction between college writing and technical writing and speaking, which is the main kind of communication taking place in the workplace today. The written homework included in this course will aim at the development of technical language skills with a focus on business and technical ‘documents,’ rather than ‘papers’. The class will include several short assignments designed to develop skills needed to compose such business documents.

Learning Outcomes
By the end of this course students should be able to:

  • Master technical business and economic terminology;
  • Refine writing style, with an emphasis on clarity and brevity, with correct usage of all forms of grammar and vocabulary. Also, develop the ability to adapt writing style as appropriate for CVs, cover letters, business emails, proposals and reports etc.;
  • Expand business vocabulary;
  • Practice spoken English in a business context;
  • Analyze audiences and adapt writing and documentation (style, format, graphics, page design) for specific audiences;
  • Deepen the understanding of broad cultural issues related to work, capital, management, social class structures and so on 

Course Content



                                                      Course schedule

Day 1


Introduction, Syllabus Review, Welcome to Business English and Technical Writing,
Careers moves; Work and Motivation;
Writing Correspondence; Writing a Letter; Writing a professional E-mail

Day 2

Chairing Meetings; Writing a Memo, Writing Minutes of a Meeting

Day 3

Woman in Business; Writing a Summary; Reading: Sheryl Sandberg “Lean In”

Day 4


Recruitment; Planning a job search, Writing resumes and cover letters; Job interviews

Job-Application Materials

Day 5


Exam (of the first half of the course)

Day 6


Managing across cultures; International Trade; Saying ‘No’ politely; Writing Arguments pro/cons
Oral presentations; Deliver a group presentation

Day  7

Banking; Venture Capitalist; Presenting a Business Plan;
Reading: Adam Smith “The Wealth of Nations”

Day 8


Marketing and Advertising; Planning a marketing strategy;

Accounting and financial statements; Government and Taxation; Writing a progress/recommendation report

Day 9


Corporate Ethics and Responsibility; Writing a report; Outlining a meeting;
Connecting with the Public; Writing Newsletters, Brochures; Social Media

Day 10


Final Exam


* This schedule is subject to change. Changes will be announced in class.

Instructional Method
This course is built in workshop form, which entails vigorous discussions and active participation on the part of the students. While the instruction will include lectures where core concepts, business practice, and language will be explained, it is the continuous and consistent exercising of students, both in class and through written homework, that guarantees the proper functioning of the course.

Required Course Materials

There will be a one-course packet for this course and it will be comprised of selected chapters from the following sources:

  • Camp, S. & Satterwhite, M. (2015). College English and business communication. (10th edition). New York: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
  • Markel, M. (2012). Technical Communication. (10thedition). Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s.
  • Dubicka, I./O’Keeffe, M. (2011). Market Leader Advanced. (3rd edition). Pearson.
  • Emmerson, P. (2007). Business English handbook advanced. Oxford: Macmillan ELT.
  • Brook-Hart, G. (2007). Business Benchmark advanced. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Smith, Adam. (1976). An inquiry into the nature and causes of the wealth of nations. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
  • Sandberg, Sheryl. (2013). Lean In. Woman, Work, and the Power to Lead. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.

Participation (10%): In a business environment attendance and punctuality are essential for success. As this course is preparation for your future career, your attendance, punctuality, and active participation will be treated as in a professional environment. Classes begin at the scheduled hour in the room assigned. 

Homework (20%): Homework is essential to maximizing the benefits of this class. Students are expected to have done their reading assignments and completed any associated comprehension and vocabulary exercises in preparation for each class. All written homework when assigned must be submitted on time.  All homework must be typed, single-spaced with 1-inch margins, using Times New Roman 12 point font, with the name, date and title of the assignment clearly written in the heading.  Each homework assignment must make a note of all materials used in the preparation of the assignment, including books, websites or people consulted.

A review essay (20%): You will write a short review essay (1000 words minimum) for two pieces of reading materials assigned in class. More specific guidelines on essay writing and formatting will be provided in class. 

Examinations (50%): 

There will be 2 examinations during the course:

  • Midterm Examination          (25%)
  • Final Examination                  (25%)