BESIG Workshop on Learning Technologies – Dubrovnik, Croatia

Learning technologies in language teaching – where are we? Where do we go from here?

[Pete Sharma & Kevin Westbrook]

Our session was scheduled for 9.30 on Sunday morning. Given this deliciously wicked time-slot, we were delighted at the number of attendees.

Pete set the scene by suggesting that the scope of business English is wide, in terms of course types, contexts and content. He presented a mind-map of new technology, similarly wide.

You can download the introductory PPT here. croatia2

Participants assembled into seven groups, by topic:

Is blended best? (two groups)

Teaching on-line (two groups)

M-learning

Interactive whiteboards

Learning Technologies

Groups appointed note-takers; the notes are being collated and will form the basis of the post-report, currently being written by Kevin Westbrook.

The report back from each group was crisp and touched on a number of issues such as: the need to define concepts such as Blended Learning; the confusion arising from the plethora of choices available in terms of programmes.

The open forum started in a positive way, with one participant saying she was made aware of the range of tools around, and felt motivated to learn more.

The workshop was a success. One of the reasons behind the success was the fact that participants were given the opportunity to discuss their ideas, and learn from each other. Networking was optimal. We were absolutely delighted to receive post-workshop praise from Valentina Dodge, doyenne of the Social Media circuit, digital scribe and one of the attendees: thanks, Vale! Thanks also to Duncan Baker for his flow of tweets during the workshop.

We are looking forward to studying the group summaries and writing these up in an article. This should appear in a future edition of BESIG Issues.

Thanks again to everyone who came. This was a participant-led workshop, and we felt inspired.