ELT Conference 2021 recordings
28 April 2021

ELT Conference 2021 session recordings

The ELT Conference 2021 took place on Wednesday 21 - Thursday 22 April, covering topics from sustainability, new teaching methodology, staff and student wellbeing, the future of the ELT classroom and inclusivity.

Below are all the links to recordings, presentations and references we are able to share.

Managers day

Welcome from English UK and Trinity College London

Jodie Gray, chief executive of English UK, opens up the 2021 ELT Conference with inspiring words, encouraging us to come together and improve the UK ELT industry as we rebuild. Alison Castle-Kane from sponsors Trinity College London welcomes delegates and gives a short presentation.

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Closing plenary: Spoon, fork, hand, chopsticks

Perhaps within the next ten years there might be another dawn of a post-colonial world order and English language and culture will have to adjust. Noreen Caplen-Spence discusses her lived experience as a black woman in UK ELT.

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Project-based approaches in staff and organisation development

Since October 2020, English UK, British Council, NILE and IATEFL have coordinated a Partnered Remote Language Improvement Project (PRELIM), supporting remote learning partnerships between English UK centres and Teacher Association members from ODA countries all over the world, and in doing so, to help increase the range of English UK member centres getting involved in tendering processes and project work.

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Teachers day

Approaches to inclusive, global materials for learning at all levels

Stimulating, real-world news videos embedding positive representations and inclusive values integrate equality, provoke critical thinking and encourage intersectional approaches. Sadly, text complexity often limits use to higher levels. Participants will explore ways all learners can develop using diverse, inclusive content, with examples from Sensations English multi-level news videos. 

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The classroom in 2021: considering hybrid, blending and socially distancing

This session will focus on some practical considerations for the classroom in 2021, with a particular focus on the implications of hybrid learning, blended learning, and the socially distanced classroom. We will look at what some of these changes to our 'traditional' classroom mean in terms of material use, the staging of communicative activities, and assessment of success throughout the lesson. We will focus on these changes from the perspective of the teacher and what competencies might be considered more relevant in these new classroom contexts. 

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Practical ways of including sustainability in your language classroom

In this session the panel will look at why teaching centres should make sustainability part of the topic of language lessons and will demonstrate some practical ideas on how this can be done in a variety of contexts and with different types of learners. Three teachers working in very different settings will present their ideas. 

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IELTS writing made easy

Writing for exams is not only about the language. When it comes to IELTS, language (grammar and vocabulary) is only half of the final mark. The other half is all about structure and task achievement/response. Using experience from working with IELTS students for several years, focussing specifically on writing, this session will demonstrate a comprehensive classification of writing tasks with an easy-to-follow structure that makes not only students', but teachers' lives easier.

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> Download the presentation

Investigating the impact of online eacher development courses

After five years of running online teacher development courses at NILE, they were keen to find out what impact they had had on participants themselves, their institutions and their students. Responses to their questionnaire to former participants suggests a significant impact on all three parties and in this talk NILE will share these findings for the benefit of other online providers.

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Helping neurodiverse learners prepare for exams 

Exams are daunting for everybody, but for neurodiverse learners (e.g. with dyslexia, ADHD, etc) there are extra layers of challenge that we need to help them overcome so that they can demonstrate their learning. This session considers exam access arrangements, and exam techniques that make the most of them. Participants will consider what is appropriate in their own contexts, and how they can best prepare their learners to succeed in formal assessments.

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Paperless teaching – good for your students, good for the environment 

From heads-up learning to collaborative tasks, it has been shown time and again that relying on paper handouts or coursebooks is not the key to successful learning (although of course they can have their place). In this talk, Jo will give you five pedagogical reasons why you should go paperless, and 10 tips on how to do it. 

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Latest assessment solutions from LanguageCert: the perfect fit

During a constantly changing and challenging global environment, LanguageCert has continued to fully support test centres and test takers, offering enhanced services as well as adding exciting and innovative exams to their existing portfolio. Join LanguageCert to discover more about how they can transform your assessment experience, offering a perfect fit for teachers and learners. 

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From syntax to syringes: how to get started teaching English for healthcare

Don't know your article from your clavicle or your pancreas from your passive? Don't worry. In this seminar, Rebecca will talk about how to get into teaching English to healthcare professionals. She'll tell you how to get started, what healthcare professionals tend to want and need, give an overview of the (free) OET preparation provider programme and share tips and materials.  

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The native factor and the last five years

Five years ago Silvana Richardson gave one of the greatest plenary sessions at IATEFL 2016. Meticulously researched, excellently delivered and grounded in real experience, Silvana effectively dismantled many of the surviving myths supporting the idea of native English speaker teachers and made sure the discussion was put under the glare of the ELT spotlight.

Now we are five years on. With discussions in society around equality, diversity and fairness gathering pace and ever more visible in society, Silvana considers our industry and what, if anything, has changed since 2016 and how we might think about moving forwards to have a more equitable post-pandemic ELT industry.

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Virtual Reality: gimmick or effective learning tool?

In this talk the speakers will take you through their journey from sceptics to believers, outlining how they identified the real benefits of VR, through research and trial, for developing communication skills, and how they used these as a base to create engaging lessons that deliver real learning outcomes. They will discuss what further research is planned through observation, feedback and action research.

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Creating more inclusive learning experiences

The global pandemic of 2020 led to an unprecedented rush to move courses online, which both highlighted and potentially exacerbated problems of access, equality and inclusion for many learners worldwide. In this session, we'll share some of the insights, tips and surprises we've encountered as we've been learning about how teachers and course designers can not only 'build back better' after COVID-19 – but build back fairer.

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> Download the presentation

"Oh crumbs, how do I deal with that?!" Diversity and inclusion in an ever-changing world

Teaching in any classroom full of global, diverse individuals will always bring up a level of challenge. Ensuring that everyone is included, and no one experiences prejudice of any kind is what we all strive for. We also know that achieving such a utopian space can be very challenging. This session will focus on how to create inclusive spaces that are safe and enriching for students and teachers alike.

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How to integrate soft skills into exam classes

Students often find exam preparation difficult, especially Cambridge Main Suite exams and IELTS, and likewise, teachers can find them challenging, too. This workshop will explore ways to help teachers focus on their students' soft skills such as group work, time management, critical thinking etc. and how to prepare them for their exams mentally, highlighting how they can overcome their mental blocks.

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 What does it mean to teach culture in the English classroom?

Traditionally, teaching students English meant helping them to understand British or American ways of thinking and doing things. However, if most students are using English for international communication, how relevant or necessary is it for us to focus on the culture of 'native speaker' communities? What can we do to help them become more aware and adaptable to the different cultures they'll be interacting with?

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The landscape of Green ELT

This session aims to provide a complete overview of Green ELT. The general climate and ecological background that ELT is facing and some of the problems, solutions and opportunities that are emerging will be discussed. Chris will describe actions that are available to ELT organisations and what individuals can do to play their part in addressing the crisis. He will consider psychological reactions to the emergency and advise on ways of overcoming denial, avoiding overwhelm and providing effective leadership. He will invite you to join ELT Footprint UK in helping our profession to emerge from Covid-19 on the right side of history, ready to play its part in a regenerative future.

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Closing plenary: Climate action in language education: Impactful ways to integrate environmental issues in English language teaching

This session will be centred around the research strand of the British Council's new 'Climate Action in Language Education' project. The first section will be led by Christopher Graham who will briefly outline some of the headline findings in the research, and their possible classroom and institutional implications. Colm Downes will lead the second section and drawing on case studies of good practice from around the world, this session will focus on practical ways English language teachers can develop and deliver lessons with a sustainability focus, moving beyond traditional coursebook environment units. The third element will be led by Dianna Torosyan who will outline the project that led to the development, writing and publication of her 20-hour supplementary coursebook 'Our Planet' for students aged 10-14. 

> Watch the recording

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