We asked George Pickering, the academic director of the DELTM, to give us some information about it and why managers might want to consider it as a learning option.
What does DELTM stand for?
The DELTM stands for the Diploma in English Language Teaching Management. The course has been running since 1998, is managed by English UK and is externally validated by LanguageCert.
What does the course offer?
It runs in London from September to June, with ten monthly face-to face sessions. Participants receive ten written course modules and complete six assignments. The assignments are theoretically grounded and at the same time very practical, and there is no final examination.
The course equates to 635 hours - around 8 hours a week - of which 65 hours are allocated to training sessions, 380 hours to self-study, including completion of mini-tasks, and 200 hours on the assignments.
Who is it for?
Anyone who is a practising ELT manager in the UK, no matter what area of management they specialise in. Course participants have included principals, academic managers (from both the private and state sectors), social organisers, accommodation officers and senior teachers.
In the past 18 years over 300 UK based language teaching managers have completed the course, and we have started to deliver the course outside the UK, so far twice in Shanghai.
What are its strengths?
The course allows participants to engage in triple learning.
Firstly, they read the written course modules and do the mini-tasks before the F2F sessions. Then in the F2F sessions participants discuss issues related to the module topic and, finally, the managers complete practical assignments related to their organisations to reinforce their learning.
Secondly, the DELTM gives you an overview of the role of an ELT manager. Jake Castaldi, English in Margate, commented: 'It has given me the opportunity to look at areas of an ELT operation that I had not been heavily involved with and helped me understand "the bigger picture". Moreover, it has been an incredible source of information regarding systems and procedures that are implemented in other centres and that could be adapted to suit our organisation'.
The quality of the tutoring scores highly in the formal course feedback from participants. The tutors (Terry Phillips, Keith Harding and I) seek to make the sessions informative and interactive. Nancy Card, Hilderstone College, wrote: 'I particularly liked the learning environment the trainers created. Participants were encouraged to be open and share experiences, which helped build relationships and stimulated learning'.
The course is well managed and ably supported by English UK. As the course is externally validated it provides participants with a recognised qualification.
The course tutors and English UK strive to keep the course as up to date as possible both in terms of content and mode of delivery, but it is a struggle!
Managers are busy people and so helping them to complete all of the course assignments on time can be challenging for all concerned. The course is definitely for those who want to make a genuine commitment to their professional development.
In sessions, it's sometimes hard to draw to a close animated pair and group work!
How effective is the course?
It's hard to quantify the return on investment of any training course. What we can say is that, firstly, feedback from participants has always been extremely positive. John Endean, Bede's English Experience, wrote to us: 'I would unequivocally recommend the DELTM course to anyone in a position of management or to anyone with the desire to be part of a management team'.
Secondly, the course has run consecutively for 20 years and many of the participants hear about it through positive word of mouth. We also have a lot of repeat business. Many sector leaders such as Wimbledon School of English, Kaplan and LSI Portsmouth, have put different people on the course. Feedback from participants consistently states that it has helped them become better managers.
How has the course developed?
A few years ago we made the final assignment a project based one on a topic that the participant chooses.
Four years ago we introduced a course Moodle to facilitate discussion between participants themselves and with tutors.
We want to disseminate the project assignments and the great work that managers are doing. At a recent English UK conference four DELTM alumni gave presentations based on their DELTM projects.
Several articles based on DELTM projects have appeared in the IATEFL LAM SIG Newsletter, ETP and MET.
What future course developments are planned?
We would like to extend the use of the course Moodle and engage in more flipped learning.
We are looking at ways of strengthening the links and points of contact between DELTM Alumni.
We have run the course twice now in Shanghai and English UK has also been approached to run the course in a number of other countries including Italy, Mexico and Russia. With some customisation to localise some of the texts and to parts of the F2F sessions, we are ready to take the show on the road to other parts of the globe!
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