Pedagogical lessons for remote/blended online classrooms

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Abstract
An English for Academic Purposes (EAP) Pathway Program of a major Canadian university suddenly pivoted to remote teaching and learning, as did so many other university programs across the country in the 2020–2021 academic year. The Pathway Program, took the opportunity of this “pivot” to research how students and instructors fared with the new technology-mediated curriculum and found key practices as useful for instructors. In this article, we describe the Community of Inquiry framework that underpins our study and the insights gained for instructors who retain at least some remote teaching activities in their classrooms. Implications of this study indicate that there are five ways in which instructors can potentially alter their pedagogy to further student satisfaction for online study.  Continue Reading →

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An anthropological approach to diversity in ELT

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Abstract
This paper presents a discussion of the racial barrier to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the context of English Language Teaching. Although diversity is welcomed in ESL classrooms, giving all the students and teachers equal opportunities to participate and keeping all of them equally engaged is not necessarily an easy task when it comes to a formidable barrier called race. To achieve this aim, one perspective ESL employers, teachers, and students can adopt to reduce racial bias is an anthropological approach, which this paper is attempting to promote.

 

Survival of the fittest
When the sociologist Herbert Spencer coined the phrase survival of the fittest in 1864, he had no idea how his misconception of Charles Darwin’s Theory of Evolution would arouse such a bitter controversy in the 20th century with dire repercussions in our present day.  Continue Reading →

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culture, ESL, Uncategorised
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Facebook as a tool for enhancing students’ argumentative writing

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For images, refer to the PDF of the article.

Argumentative writing is one of the most difficult written genres in higher education for both English as a second language (ESL) and English as foreign language (EFL) learners. These learners often face difficulties using complex syntactic forms and appropriate elements of argumentation (Ka-kan-dee & Kaur, 2014). Hence, there is an imperative need to explore the use of effective strategies to improve ESL/EFL students’ argumentative writing ability at the tertiary level.
Corrective feedback, referred to as utterances that indicate to a learner that their output is erroneous in some way (Nassaji & Kartchava, 2017), may be a particularly effective method of giving individual and specific guidance for the improvement of argumentation.  Continue Reading →

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Thou shalt not speak English at home

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Abstract
In this paper, I will explore various reasons why English may be endorsed to be spoken at home by English language learners. There is a strong consensus by second language teachers that learners of a second language (L2) should focus on developing their first language (L1) in a more academic means, adding that solidifying their foundation in their first language, would also support second language learning. Furthermore, language skills are interchangeable from one language (L1) to another (L2). However, the point of this article is to entertain and even to support a continuation of learning the L2 at the student’s home for reasons explained in further detail. In addition, the notion is not to weaken the argument that speaks of the continual development of the L1,  Continue Reading →

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Identity in undergraduate L2 writing: A juxtapositionof academic voice and internal voices

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Abstract
Despite mounting research on the potential that cultivating self-identity affords students, it is often forgotten in most academic contexts, whether in instruction or assessment, that L2 writers have an L1 identity. In all avenues of higher education, researchers agree that multiple, complex, and simultaneous identities of students are advantageous for their advancement in academic writing (Cohen, 2011; Cummins, 2001; Leki, 2008); however, institutional practices, persisting social conventions, and student-teacher relationships (or lack thereof) place a greater pressure for L2 undergraduate students specifically. International and immigrant/generation 1.5 undergraduate students arrive in their new settings with their L1 knowledge base and are often expected to forego rhetorical strategies of their L1, as well as their linguistic and cultural repertoire,  Continue Reading →

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English as a lingua franca: Reverting the school system back to a monolingual ideology—Why it’s dangerous and how to move toward a plurilingual ideology

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Introduction
English is the most widely spoken language in the world. It is the most commonly taught, learned, and used L2 worldwide. English is sought out as a valuable commodity. Parents want their children to learn it because of potential job and personal gains, and people worldwide seek to learn it for these exact reasons. It reigns supreme within the seemingly invisible pyramid of languages. English is king. As a lingua franca, it is the dominant language of international business, science, and technology (Lüdi et al., 2010, p. 57). Whatever the context, the rule of thumb seems to be, “When in doubt or when in a communicative bind, resort to speaking English.” Tourists who visit foreign countries can rest assured that they will be understood if they have knowledge of English.  Continue Reading →

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Incorporating CALL in the ESL classroom: Focusing on animation, movies, Netflix, TED, VOA, Arirang News, NPR, and YouTube

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Abstract
This study examines the application of CALL in English classes for university-level or EAP students. Multimedia is significant in the digital era and should be applied in the ESL classroom. However, few studies explore how to apply a variety of multimedia resources in the ESL classroom. This study explores students’ opinions on the use of multimedia from a class conducted for one semester. The class dealt with one theme each week using various media. Over the semester, eight multimedia resources were used: animations, movies, Netflix, TED, VOA, NPR, Arirang News (a Korean English-language network), and YouTube. At the end of the semester, a student survey was conducted to examine students’ motivation, preference, and improvement in English proficiency when using multimedia.  Continue Reading →

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Quick tips for teaching literacy

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These tips and guidelines are meant for instructors and volunteers who are new to the field of literacy and intend to work with adult literacy learners. I have come up with these tips based on my experience with literacy students, other teachers’ experiences and observations, and also my learners’ feedback that I always consider when planning my lessons. This is based on experience teaching literacy students from diverse backgrounds and various levels of literacy.

Background
Understanding the background of literacy learners and their needs is the first step to a fruitful learning experience. Many of our literacy learners are individuals who have never been to school before, have had limited education (one to two years of schooling) in their home countries,  Continue Reading →

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How to manage expectations in online classes: Guidelines and requirements

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Abstract
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become incumbent upon teachers to transfer courses to an online environment. However, because of the abrupt transition, many in-service teachers might feel poorly prepared for this change of modality, and therefore need to have a better grasp of the expectations and requirements of an online class. This paper attempts to (1) present certain challenges students and teachers may encounter in an online environment as opposed to face-to-face classes, (2) provide relevant guidelines as well as strategies informed by the findings of previous research studies to address the issues, and (3) present a reflection checklist.

Introduction
Before the strike of the COVID-19 pandemic, online learning was considered optional,  Continue Reading →

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Teaching the pronunciation of consonsants to ESL students

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Abstract
In this article, an experienced ESL pronunciation teacher explains the typical pronunciation problems many ESL students have with selected consonants. The author explains how these consonants are pronounced, and there are video links to demonstrate the pronunciation of these consonants. In addition, for each of the selected consonants within the article, the author gives practical suggestions as to how these consonants may be taught within the context of task-based and communicative lessons. This is important as such meaningful activities allow the students to apply their pronunciation of these consonants within classroom situations that mimic real life. The demonstrations of the pronunciation of the target consonants and the classroom practice activities are applicable for ESL lessons conducted on an online video-based synchronous platform,  Continue Reading →

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The role of grammar in ESL and EFL courses

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Abstract
The teaching of grammar has been a controversial issue in second and foreign languages. On the one side, one can find those who oppose teaching grammar in language courses, and on the other side, one can also find many language teachers and applied linguists who favor teaching grammar in the same said courses. This paper deals with some issues related to the teaching of grammar, how teachers should teach, and when is the best time to introduce it in second and foreign language courses. While many language courses focus on grammatical forms, other courses, such as those adhering to the communicative language teaching approach, try to exclude the explicit treatment of form from the syllabi. It is known that native speakers of any language acquire their native language without grammar explanations;  Continue Reading →

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Individualized program plans for adult ESL literacy learners

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*For all footnotes, refer to the PDF version of the article.

Abstract
Adult ESL literacy teachers are often perplexed when instructing pre-, non-, and semi-literate adult ESL learners due to their L1 literacy level, age, and possibly traumatic experiences. Classroom instruction and assessment should be carefully planned and strategically implemented because of the underlying financial and social ties connecting literacy to socio-economic status. How might instructional practices be modified to better meet the needs of adult L2 emergent readers? This paper examines the use of Response to Intervention (RTI) tier 3 plans in adult English learning in an L2 context. For twelve weeks, several evidence-based reading diagnostics assessments were administered to help develop individualized program plans for a group of emergent readers.  Continue Reading →

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