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Current trends in elt around the globe
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Current trends in elt around the globe

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  • 1. Trends in ELT around the Globe
  • 2. Language learning and teaching is dynamic and fluid. There is nothing fixed about them (Larsen- Freeman, 2004: 186). Unlike the teaching of other subjects – Math, Physics, etc. which have by and large remained the same, the ELT tradition has been subject to tremendous change especially throughout the twentieth century. The whys and wherefores of the paradigm shifts in ELT
  • 3. Approximately, every decade a new approach or methodology comes into practice. Particularly, the period from the 1950s to 1980s has often been referred to as “The Age of Methods” during which a number of quite detailed prescriptions for language teaching were proposed. All the methods have had their glory days. As elements of Computer-Aided Language Learning (CALL) began to grow, the very need for human teachers came briefly into question.
  • 4. Many theorists, linguists, language researchers, educational psychologists and a sea of teachers have contributed to our knowledge and understanding of the language teaching and learning processes.
  • 5. i. Many new approaches are rediscoveries of old methods neglected but re- illuminated. • A few of the many major events, trends and theories which shaped ELT during the past decades include:
  • 6. ii. Gardner (1993) proposed a theory of Multiple Intelligences in general education but was later applied to language teaching . This opened the way to more diversity of activities focused on the students themselves and their innate skills, preferences and abilities. This consequently led to the concept of learner centeredness realizing the individual differences. Student-centered teaching and learning-based courses, texts and programs developed at an increased rate.
  • 7. iii. Noam Chomsky’s theory of Transformational Generative Grammar (1957) gave us greater insights into language learning vs. language acquisition. His criticism on B.F. Skinner’s theory of learning truly brought a revolution in the arena of general learning as well as in language acquisition.
  • 8. iv. Krashen’s theory of Second Language Acquisition deepened our insights into language acquisition and learning. v. Asher’s Total Physical Response claimed a successful adult second language learning as a parallel process to child’s first language acquisition. vi. Crossovers from the general educational trends such as Cooperative Learning, Whole Language Approach, and Neuro-linguistic Programming have influenced language teaching and learning considerably.
  • 9. vii. Content-based, task based, problem-based learning and genre-based emphasized teaching language through meaning making.
  • 10. Key trends in ELT today
  • 11. With the facility of e-communication, it has been possible for the English language teachers/ practitioners to network and enrich their teaching. This has enabled the teachers to share their experiences and develop their profession. The Special Interest Group (SIG), Support Groups, discussion, chat room, etc. have contributed to the enhancement of teachers’ careers. Networking
  • 12. Networking has also enabled teachers not to depend upon theories and methods prescribed by the methodologists and to try out as have been practiced by others. Online ELT resources are growing rapidly, newsletters on ELT are being used more by both the teachers and students.
  • 13. Method synergetics or eclecticism It is crossbreeding of ‘elements of various methods to find those practices which best support effective learning’. If we view classroom practices, we find teachers not blindly depending on a particular method of teaching prescribed but the ELT practitioners often practice the hybrid of more than one method of teaching.
  • 14. Strategopedia Give a man a fish He eats for a day Teach him to fish He eats for the whole life. A trend in ELT today has been to make the students independent learners. Today, a school of thought has developed with the purpose of equipping learners with appropriate learning strategies to take the responsibility for self-direction.
  • 15. The students are trained in the use of learning strategies in order to improve their learning effectiveness. Learners learn how to learn. Cooperative Learning Methodologies and Multiple Intelligences Theory teach learners different learning strategies to apply while learning a language.
  • 16. Student centredness English language teachers all over the globe seem to have realized that gone are the days when teachers deliver lectures in front of their pupils who just sit as passive listeners. Learner centeredness is the demand of the time. That is why language teachers have to play the role of facilitators in the classroom, not authorities. As a matter of fact, pupils learn by doing in pairs and groups.
  • 17. Reflective practice This is about teachers’ questioning and exploring their own practice of teaching. It is a sort of systematic curiosity about going beyond the edges of what we know and do, to find out how we could do things differently or better (Underhill, 2007). Reflecting upon our own way of teaching tremendously helps the teachers improve the practice.
  • 18. Rethinking aim One key trend in English teaching profession linked to the growing interest in global education is rethinking of basic educational goals, the way of English education. A growing number of educators are now starting to discuss what the aims of English language teaching should be.
  • 19. Educators have argued that there is a need for an approach to language education that aims at fostering a sense of social responsibility in students. A growing number of educators are now beginning to discuss global issues and concerns in relation to language teaching and learning.
  • 20. What are we doing for the earth? Global peace and environmental issues intrinsically affect every human being on earth. We, as English language teachers have a mission of helping everyone in this world to communicate with each other to prevent the global disaster ahead.
  • 21. Conferencing Today, English language teachers seem to have realized that conferencing is one of the best means of enhancing ELT. English language teachers in almost all countries have established their professional organizations; and they organize and participate in different kinds of seminars, workshops, training, and conventions in order to grow academically and professionally.
  • 22. Grammaring Gone are the days when English language teachers make the students parrot the rules of the language and use them in making sentences either in speech or writing. Instead, recently the teachers of English have begun to involve their pupils in grammaring rather than teaching grammar.
  • 23. Larsen-Freeman (2007) claims it to be the fifth skill of language that incorporates the ability to use grammar structures accurately, meaningfully and appropriately for one’s communicative purposes. Here grammar is seen as more of a process than a product. Grammar lessons are no longer about knowing language systems (declarative knowledge), but about knowing how to use language (procedural knowledge).
  • 24. Updating ELT practitioners today update their knowledge of the language as well as the methodology in various ways such as reading journal, participating in training, seminar workshops, enrolling in graduate programs, etc. Surfing ELT websites also enables the teachers to update their knowledge of trends and techniques around the world.
  • 25. Academic qualifications once acquired are not enough for the teachers in anyway to teach language effectively forever. They need to go along the demand of the time and current practices.
  • 26. Locally produced materials Today, countries around the globe have realized that instructional materials produced in one country may not be effective in other countries. Teaching materials in the form of textbooks work texts and other reference materials should suit the users’ soil, culture, and values.
  • 27. Imported language teaching materials are in no way practicable in the context where they are not produced keeping into consideration the local needs.
  • 28. Sharing with a colleague Informal discussions with a colleague with whom the teachers feel easy can add a lot to one’s professional development as well as heighten his/her morale. The teacher who wishes to find a solution to a teaching problem, speaks in confidence about a failure, get an idea as to how to teach a language item effectively.
  • 29. Anti-method era The methodologists have ever been in search of more effective method of teaching foreign languages or second languages. One method is embraced as an improvement over the other. Nevertheless, no method has been a panacea for the solution of ELT problems.
  • 30. This is why, a pessimistic view has been developed among the methodologists themselves. Methods do not matter because they do not exist. Thee era of method is over. ELT, therefore, is now in ‘post method thinking’.
  • 31. Frustration Whereas on the one hand, the ELT practitioners have been keeping update their profession going in line with the current trends in ELT, a large mass of English language teachers have not been able to follow the trends due to lack of resources available to them, which in turn have developed a sense of frustration in them.
  • 32. Particularly, the teachers working in the hinterlands have been deprived of the online resources, conferencing and unaware of the emerging trends in the field and consider themselves to be underprivileged.
  • 33. Future trend The future is quite uncertain. Nevertheless, no one can stop us from predicting the future. Pondering on the existing trends and a wave of change, we can make a sensible guess that we are moving from simplicity to complexity, from uniformity to diversity, from prescriptivism to eclecticism, from oneness to pluralism, from customary to embryonic ways of doing things, more towards flexibility, practicality and towards refinement of current practices in order to make a difference.
  • 34. Conclusion There is no single most excellent way of teaching languages. The successful language teacher will not confine himself/herself to only a single method.
  • 35. Nonetheless, ELT practitioners have not remained reliant on fixed prescribed and imposed practices. Instead, ELT practitioners around the globe put into practice a great deal of diverse activities to keep themselves up-to-date and enhance their practices which have been dealt above.