The World Wide Web offers opportunities for professional development, such as taking a higher qualification through doing an online course; having access to a range of free articles, and practical teaching tips. The “global village” has been wonderful for teachers in remoter areas, enabling them to feel part of the ELT community. It offers a chance to find out what other teachers are doing, and a way of sharing practical ideas with colleagues. Here are a number a range of web sites where you can access ideas on teacher development.
Teacher Development SIG
The Teacher Development SIG web site contains links, articles and a bibliography.
This aim of this website is to shows how teachers in schools can initiate and sustain educational research projects at work.
This site is jointly run by the British Council and the BBC. It provides a forum, plus ideas and a regular newsletter on technology-enhanced language learning.
Teacher Trainers and Educators SIG
This SIG, of particular interest to anyone involved in the training of ELT teachers, include article on professional development.
Forums allow you to post your views on a topic and engage in a professional debate with teachers across the world. It is easy to join a forum of your choice – often it takes seconds to register. Forums are usually moderated, to ensure that only sensible posts are displayed and spam is removed. Common messages include requests for help about some area of language teaching.
Part of the OUP site. Described as a place for teachers to discuss current issues in ESOL
Organises live chat sessions. Transcripts of previous discussions available
Includes various discussion groups
Posts asking for information about ELT exams
All ELT organisations have a web presence. ELT organisations range from large International charities such as IATEFL (International Association of Teachers of a Foreign Language) to small, local teacher support groups. There is a range of benefits from visiting such sites, especially the possibility of accessing information about local and international events.
IATEFL (International Association of English as a Foreign Language)
Contains links to SIGs (Special Interest groups) including the Teacher Trainers SIG.
TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other languages)
US equivalent of IATEFL
ELTAF (English Language Teachers Association, Frankfurt)
Includes links to all the other groups in Germany and Austria such as ELTAS (English Language Teachers Association, Stuttgart), MELTA(Munich English Language Teachers Association), TEA (Teachers of English in Austria)
The Internet is a good source of up-to-date information about ELT conferences. Try:
Magazines and Journals
Magazines are useful as they offer a different perspective to your own. The reviews can be helpful for a DOS choosing methodology books. One reason that you should subscribe is access to the online archives. You can browse the archives by author, issue, title or subject area. Some journals only exist in an on-line version. Others have websites that provide support for the printed magazine.
This is an electronic academic journal. It is refereed, so articles are reviewed by knowledgeable peers. Being online, it aims (successfully) to have a shorter lead-time than print versions of academic journals.
Modern English Teacher
A quarterly magazine aimed at language teachers. Includes reviews, practical ideas and a focus on technology section, the Webwatch column.
The Internet TESL Journal
A well established online journal for ELT. Includes more academic articles as well as useful ideas, teaching plans etc. Also has a comprehensive, searchable database of useful links.
English Teaching professional
Offers additional materials such as lesson plans, suggestions and tips. There are downloadable articles from previous issues, and also useful links to ELT sites on the web.
English Language Teaching Journal
ELT Journal is a quarterly publication for all those involved in the field of teaching English as a second or foreign language. Articles are available through ATHENS password or subscription. Athens is an Access Management system for controlling secure access to web based services. An ATHENS password is available to those studying full time at a university, or another institution, and gives access to a range articles and journals.
Humanising language teaching magazine
Online magazine in association with Pilgrims.
ELT publishers and other organisations send out regular newsletters by e-mail. It is often free to subscribe, or such newsletters are available online as a pdf. Publishers often have newsletters. Many newsletters of course contain product and service information, and are a way of developing a client base.
Internet TESL Journal
Contains a useful list of ELT newsletters
The EL Gazette sends out a bi-monthly newsletter
Online training may form a part of a Distance courses. It seems appropriate to train as an on-line teacher by doing a training course on-line. However, it would be difficult to take an ELT teaching certificates entirely on-line since there can be no face-to-face teaching practice. Doing an online teaching certificate may be a solution for some candidates, as they can obtain input at a distance. Taking a course which they need to attend could be an advisable next step, in order to participate in teaching practice element.
Runs courses on online tutoring, e-moderation and how to use Moodle.
Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages Worldwide. Tuition is by computer conferencing. The course is part of our masters’ programme in education – MA or MEd (Applied Linguistics) but can also be studied on its own.
University of Manchester – postgraduate courses
Masters courses, such as the M.ED in Technology and ELT, can be taken largely or wholly online.
The Internet has enabled professionals to attend conferences remotely. These are especially common in the area of TELL (Technology-enhanced language learning). One advantage of these online events is that presentations can be archived and visited by those who did not “attend”. Also popular are “webcasts” where an ELT professional gives an online paper at a specific time, enabling the speaker to reach a global audience. Information on webcasts can be found on: http://webheadsinaction.org