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Current International Developments in English Language Teaching (ELT) and Implications for Tertiary Institutions in Sudan
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Current International Developments in English Language Teaching (ELT) and Implications for Tertiary Institutions in Sudan

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Plenary speech by Mark Krzanowski (University of Westminster) at the ELT Conference in Sudan /March 1-3.

Plenary speech by Mark Krzanowski (University of Westminster) at the ELT Conference in Sudan /March 1-3.

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Current International Developments in English Language Teaching (ELT) and Implications for Tertiary Institutions in Sudan Current International Developments in English Language Teaching (ELT) and Implications for Tertiary Institutions in Sudan Presentation Transcript

  • Plenary Talk: Day 2 Current International Developments in English Language Teaching (ELT) and Implications for Tertiary Institutions in Sudan Mark Krzanowski Dept of English and Linguistics University of Westminster London ELT Conference: 1-3 March 2003 University of Khartoum and British Council ‘ Time for Change: Developing English Language Teaching at Tertiary Level in Sudan’
  •  
  • Organisation of the talk
    • Introduction
    • 1. Developments and Innovations in General English
    • 2. Developments and Innovations in English for Academic and Specific Purposes (EAP and ESP)
    • 3. Developments in English for Work (E4W)
    • 4. Teacher training, teacher education and continuous professional development
    • 5. Impact of key new learning technologies on ELT
    • 6. Breakthroughs in assessment and testing
    • 7. Current key issues in international and British HE impacting on ELT in the tertiary sector
    • 8. The status of English in Sudan
    • 9. Framework for assessing current state of play and effecting future change
    • 10. Reasons for Presenting Plenary 2 on Day 2
    • Brief conclusions
    View slide
  • 1. Developments and Innovations in General English
    • clearer identification of a language learner (learner type and where they study)
    • EFL student (characteristics) – cf classic EFL books (often considered Euro/Western-centric)
    • ESOL student (characteristics) – cf classic ESOL books
    • student studying general English in their home country (characteristics) [e.g. in a developing country like Sudan] – cf books adapted to suit local / geographical / cultural needs
    • - ELT materials available for teaching such learners (examples)
    View slide
  • Developments and Innovations in General English- cntnd
    • concept of a ‘spiky profile’: challenge to teachers and exam providers
    • ability of language teachers to handle different learner types (qualifications, level of training and experience)
    • Changes in the demography of an English learner: relatively few beginners to cater for
    • current teaching methodologies: ‘enlightened eclecticism’
    • Tougher rules for foreign students
    • 10 February 2010
    • Foreign students from outside Europe wanting to come to the UK to study will be required to meet stricter entry criteria, the Home Secretary announced today.
    • The new regulations will ensure that students studying below degree level have a limited ability to work in the UK, and that their dependants cannot work here at all.
    • It will be even harder for bogus students, whose only aim is to work in the UK, to come into the country. http://www.bia.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/newsarticles/2010/February/tougher-rules-for-foreign-stud
    • The new measures for students include:
    • a good standard of English (equivalent of holding just below a GCSE in a foreign language) will be needed to come to the UK and study to improve English language competency further;
    • a good standard of English (again equivalent of holding just below a GCSE in a foreign language) will need to be demonstrated in order to study any other course below degree level;
    • restricting the lowest-level courses (A levels and equivalent) to only the most trusted institutions;
    • halving the amount of time a student studying below first degree level or on a foundation degree course will be able to work, to just 10 hours during term time;
    • a ban on bringing in dependants for anyone studying a course for less than six months; and
    • a ban on dependants of anyone studying a course lower than foundation or undergraduate degree level from working - they will face removal from the UK if found doing so.
  • Developments and Innovations in General English - cntnd
    • - implications for Sudan : Which ELT learner type is a Sudanese student in Higher Education? Who teaches English in Sudan? What quals do they hold? Which methods do they use? Are all English language students homogenous or heterogeneous? Do they all have reasonably high academic literacy skills when they enter university or are they any divides (e.g. urban-rural; rich-poor) Any need for change?
  • 2. Developments and Innovations in English for Academic and Specific Purposes (EAP and ESP)
    • Clarification of concepts with some examples
    • traditionally EAP and ESP - separated
    • new trend: ESAP – English for Specific Academic Purposes (examples)
    • traditional debates:
    • (a) how to teach EAP / ESAP : combined-skills or separated-skills approach?
  • Developments and Innovations in English for Academic and Specific Purposes (EAP and ESP) - cntnd
    • (b) looking for the best model for EAP courses – Foundation, Bridging, presessional or insessional models?
    • (c) EAP in the university sector – a mainstream current or peripheral flow ?
    • (d) who teaches EAP & what are their qualifications and background ?
    • (e) promotion of learner autonomy, learner independence and self-directed learning
  • Developments and Innovations in English for Academic and Specific Purposes (EAP and ESP) - continued
    • (f) materials design – EAP practitioner expected to go beyond commercially available mats and resources
    • curriculum/syllabus design – concept of process syllabus
    • (h) lack of EAP materials for students representing non-text based disciplines (esp. Art and Design)
    • lack of EAP resources in poor low-tech countries (teaching ‘on a shoe-string’)
    • (j) difficulty in promoting or teaching certain concepts in certain cultures, e.g. critical thinking or avoiding plagiarism
  • Developments and Innovations in English for Academic and Specific Purposes (EAP and ESP) - continued
    • implications for Sudan: where does Sudanese Higher Education, as well as its ELT teachers, stand in relation to these points? [what is taught: GE or EAP? Or both?] Do Sudanese English language teacher have enough experience or expertise to teach EAP or ESAP? Would they manage syllabus design, materials design and preparation of schemes of work for diverse learner types?
  • http://www.baleap.org.uk/teap/teap-competency-framework.pdf
  • 3. Developments in English for Work (E4W)
    • explosion of interest in E4W
    • curricula/syllabi at English-speaking and international universities: how well are graduates prepared for the World of Work on exit?
    • concept of ‘soft’ skills
    • mission of higher education: idealistic – pursuit of knowledge? or: strongly embedded employability agenda and employability skills ?
    • importance of language competence for professional career (esp. in international contexts)
    • existence (or absence) of English language or communication skills modules in undergraduate or postgraduate modules
  • Developments in English for Work (E4W) - continued
    • implications for Sudan:
    • Do young Sudanese university graduates need English for their professional careers? Do employers value prospective employees with a good command of English for general and Specific Academic Purposes? Do such employees get better jobs or earn more money?
  • 4 . Teacher training, teacher education and continuous professional development
    • TT framework of development of ELT practitioner
    • Certificate TESOL / TEFL / ELT  Diploma TESOL / TEFL / ELT  MA TESOL / TEFL / ELT or Applied Linguistics  PhD or EdD
    • Question for debate: is it justifiable for an ELT professional in 21st century to ‘skip’ the vocational link (i.e. Certificate and Diploma ) in one’s professional development?
    • training for teaching EAP or ESP : any specialist certified courses available?
    • Continuous Professional Development for ELT practitioner in HE – one’s willingness to do so vs attitudes of employer
  • Teacher training, teacher education and continuous professional development - cntd
    • how teachers can be helped to become reflective practitioners
    • how to move speedily on the continuum: experience – expertise
    • a need for a document describing set standards for the profession locally and regionally with a reference to international standards (e.g. QuiTE)
  • http://www.quality-tesol-ed.org.uk/downloads/Choosing_Your_First_TESOL_course.pdf
  • Teacher training, teacher education and continuous professional development - cntd
    • implications for Sudan:
    • Are all Sudanese tertiary-sector English language teachers suitably trained and qualified? Have they all gone through the teaching observation practicum? Do they hold a QTS (Qualified Teacher Status?) Do they hold both professional/vocation AND academic qualifications? Is there a need for any reform? If there is any anomaly, how can the problems be resolved?
  • 5. Impact of key new learning technologies on ELT
    • students wordprocessing all essays (no handwritten essays accepted any more)
    • predominant use of PowerPoint for presentations (OHP becoming obsolete)
    • experiments with teaching academic writing in the classroom: collaborative writing in computer rooms, including peer practice with editing and proof-reading skills
    • recording lectures in lecture halls or classrooms or re-accessing them in the Library
    • tutors experimenting with feedback given to students (some opting for recording oral feedback as an mp3 recording rather than producing lengthy written feedback)
    • SKYPE tutorials
  • Impact of key new learning technologies on ELT - cntnd
    • the Blackboard / Virtual Learning Environment: managing core documents and notes electronically
    • online journals, periodicals and articles as an additional source for researched synthesis essays
    • anti-plagiarism software (e.g. Turnitin ) to detect students’ plagiarism in written work
    • interactive whiteboards
    • creation and use of learning objects in open learning
    • sharing academic presentations across the world on www.slideshare.net , e.g. http://www.slideshare.net/markkski1/teaching-communication-skills-to-large-classes
  •  
  • Impact of key new learning technologies on ELT - cntnd
    • advances in online learning: e.g. video-conferencing (e.g. a customised teacher training course for Al-Quds Open University): http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=192947
    • importance of open and distance learning (e.g. UNISA in South Africa or the Open University in the UK)
    • www.youtube EDU - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KU-LaJh2qo
  •  
  • Impact of key new learning technologies on ELT - cntnd
    • implications for Sudan:
    • Are new learning technologies being used in Sudanese tertiary education – if so, is it a common feature at all universities and colleges? Are there any variations or gaps? What is missing? What will be implemented very soon? What seems impossible to implement? What is Sudan-specific and how is it being addressed by the local sector?
  • 6. Breakthroughs in assessment and testing
    • diagnostic, progress and achievement testing
    • international trends in ELT: IELTS, TOEFL, ELSA, the PTE Academic: http://www.independent.co.uk/student/postgraduate/mbas-guide/why-arent-students-learning-chinese-1795515.html
    • localised testing and assessment in ELT (example from UH)
  • Pearson PTE Academic
    • The key features and benefits of the test can be summarised as follows:
    •  
    • Very quick results turnaround - results in 5 working days or less
    • Online registration - allowing short notice registration and credit / debit card payment
    • Automated scoring - providing very reliable results (even speaking and writing)
    • Authentic test content - providing valid, real life measure of academic English
    • Innovative and integrated (skills) items - again ensuring valid measurement of proficiency
    • High levels of security - including biometrics (finger print / palm vein scanning), test taker photographs, high security test centres, and paperless results (score reports are electronically allocated to the candidates chosen recognising institutions (e.g Universities) and organisations  (e.g. the UKBA)
  • Breakthroughs in assessment and testing - cntnd
    • implications for Sudan:
    • Do Sudanese universities and colleges use an international or local (or a combination) English language testing system? Are results directly comparable? Are there any variations? What is needed at present and in the imminent future?
  • 7. Current key issues in international and British HE impacting on ELT in the tertiary sector
    • continuous assessment – summative assessment – circa 70% - 30%
    • all HE lecturers expected to have an official teaching qualification (e.g. HE Cert in Teaching and Learning)
    • promotion of teaching AND/OR research for promotion, not just research
    • blended learning and paucity of contact time
    • length of an academic year
  • Current key issues in international and British HE impacting on ELT in the tertiary sector - cntnd
    • large classes (in international perspective): http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/02/04/news-in-pictures-up-los-banos-students-unite-against-large-class-policy/
    • the Bologna process
    • internationalisation and globalisation – readiness of Sudanese students to go and study abroad (+ potential problems): http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?storycode=410274
  •  
  •  
  • Current key issues in international and British HE impacting on ELT in the tertiary sector - cntnd
    • language planning (e.g. change of policy): awareness raising, lobbying, and effecting change
    • shifting from EFL to ESL : implications for policy and practice (case studies from elsewhere, e.g. Iceland or the University of Central Asia)
  • Current key issues in international and British HE impacting on ELT in the tertiary sector - cntnd
    • implications for Sudan:
    • Is Sudan ready for a paradigm shift in the delivery of subject-specific courses via a / the medium of English? Is it taking place at present? Who is responsible for these decisions? Is it easy to effect and institutionalise change in tertiary education in Sudan?
    • 8. The status of English in Sudan: past, present and future
    • implications for Sudan:
    • What was, has been, is and probably will be the role of English for Sudanese society?
    • 9. Framework for assessing current state of play and effecting future change: S-P-S-E (Situation-Problem-Solution-Evaluation)
    • 10. Reasons for Presenting Plenary 2 on Day 2
  • Brief conclusions
    • It seems that this is the right time to aim at effecting change in Sudanese tertiary education in relation to the role of English in higher education courses. It is hoped that the Conference provides a unique insight into current developments in tertiary ELT in Sudan , other African countries and internationally so that a new language policy can be reformulated .
    • This can also be done through an informed decision reached via discussions of senior policy makers in the MoHE, university vice-chancellors, heads of departments, recognised teaching associations, and advisory bodies (e.g. the British Council).
    • It appears that Sudanese tertiary education is ready for a paradigm shift in relation to English Language in HE curriculum, and all the participants of this Conference have a unique role to play in the process .
  •  
  • Thank you for your attention!
    • Questions and answers
    • Mark Krzanowski
    • Dept of English and Linguistics
    • University of Westminster London
    • Email: [email_address]
    • IATEFL ESP SIG Co-ordinator: http://espsig.iatefl.org/