The Future of Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

Development of Transversal Competencies and Skills in EFL Classrooms

Sviatlana Karpava, University of Cyprus (Cyprus)


Transversal competencies (TCs) are interdisciplinary skills that are essential to be developed by students in any area of education. Soft skills or 21st century skills are indispensable for success in their personal and professional lives, to be responsible citizens and face various challenges in our modern globalized word (Doghonadze and Zoranyan, 2021). According to Common European Framework for Languages and the Framework of Reference for Pluralistic Approaches to Languages and Cultures (Council of Europe, 2021), TCs should be addressed in teaching and learning of foreign languages, with a special focus on language and communication, multilingualism and multiculturalism, critical and innovative thinking, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills, global citizenship, media and information literacy (Pachauri and Yadav, 2014; Rani, 2017; Rao, 2019). This study examined the views of future EFL teachers in Cyprus regarding TCs and whether EFL teachers should focus on transversal skills while teaching in EFL classes. The participants of the study were 56 undergraduate university students, future EFL teachers. Their age ranges from 19 to 26 years old, 10 males and 46 females. The data was collected via focus group discussions and blog entries during the EFL methodology course at university. The analysis of the data showed that most of the students agreed that TCs are important and should be developed in EFL classrooms. However, more training and guidance are needed as not all teachers and educators know the concepts and are ready to teach soft skills along with the language. The students suggested to have a stratified approach to teaching TCs starting with the basic ones, mastering them and only then proceeding to complex ones. Among the most vital TCs are critical thinking, creativity, communicative skills, ability to learn independently or critically evaluate information and media content. Such activities as presentations, taking discussions, debates and role plays can be useful in TCs development.




Transversal competencies and skills, EFL classrooms, teacher training



[1] Doghonadze, N., and Zoranyan, M. (2021). Development of Soft Skills While Teaching English to Master’s Students. Journal of Education in Black Sea Region, 6(2), 137-147.

[2] Council of Europe (European Centre for Modern Languages) (Ed) (2021), Transversal competences in language education, Background paper, Graz, Austria.

[3] Pachauri, D., & Yadav, A. (2014). Importance of soft skills in teacher education program. International Journal of Educational Research and Technology, 5 (1), 22-25.

[4] Rani, S. (2017). Soft skills: Need of modern era. International Journal of Applied Research, 3(3), 363-365.


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