EAP teachers working in, with and through the creative arts: Reflections on a conference workshop aimed at exploring current practices

Clare Carr, Clare Maxwell, Ania Rolinska and Jennifer Sizer


While ‘English for Business’, English for Law’ and ‘English for STEM’ are widely accepted and familiar terms in EAP, less attention seems to have been paid to ‘English for the Creative Arts’. It seems that a limited range of literature and published resources are available and yet EAP practitioners are increasingly required to design courses and materials to develop academic language and literacies in the creative arts, as students engaging with these disciplines diversify. Following a brief review of the literature, this paper reflects on discussions started during a collaborative workshop held at the BALEAP 2019 Conference, which explored to what extent EAP in the creative arts differs from EAP in other disciplinary areas, and whether it needs its own disciplinary space. The discussions touched on themes including genre, criticality, specificity and studio-based learning, and it emerged that varied and often opaque expectations of student writing practices, and a prevalence of ‘fuzzy’ genres, can make EAP in these disciplines challenging. The paper expands on these themes to consider implications for teaching EAP in such creative contexts as Art, Design, Architecture and Music.