International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language

Linking, developing and supporting English Language Teaching professionals worldwide




November 2017

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Please join us on 24-25 November for the 3rd IATEFL Web Conference and find out more about the professional development opportunities offered by our Special Interest Groups (SIGs). I’m sure you will find something to get excited about among the ten webinars on offer. I would also like to let you know that Judith Mader has just been elected to represent our sixteen SIGs on the Board of Trustees from April 2018. Congratulations Judith and I look forward to working with you!

With best wishes, 

Margit Szesztay, President and Chair Publications Committee

From Head Office

IATEFL Annual Conference 2018

Visit the IATEFL conference site for more information about the conference as well as how to book for this prestigious event in Brighton. Before you book, do check out our support page. You can view or download a Helpful Guide to help you through each step of the process.

If your friends or colleagues are not IATEFL members but are interested in joining, click on the following link for information on becoming a member of IATEFL. Please allow at least three working days for membership to be activated once payment has been received. Only then is it possible to book for the conference at the reduced members’ rate.

It can sometimes be difficult to convince your place of work that you should be allowed the time off or even secure some funding from them to be able to attend. Therefore, we have translated into a number of different languages a document about the professional development benefits our conference offers. Visit the IATEFL conference site to download a copy.

Membership details

Are your membership contact details up-to-date? Please ensure your contact details are correct on your membership. Head office has been receiving a lot of undelivered post recently, due to incomplete or incorrect address information. You can check this by logging into the Member Area and selecting 'Edit your personal information' under 'Your account'.


From the SIGs

From the Research SIG

26 November 2017: ReSIG and YLTSIG joint Webinar

On 26 November 2017 at 16.00 CET, Sandie Mourão will be leading a webinar entitled ‘Research in the primary English classroom: collecting informed consent from children’. The webinar will take place in ReSIG’s Adobe Connect room.

16 December 2017: Scott Thornbury Webinar

On 16 December 2017 at 16.00 CET, Scott Thornbury will be leading a ReSIG webinar entitled ‘Writing methodology texts: a bridge too far?’. This will take place in ReSIG’s Adobe Connect room.

24 January 2018: Emily Edwards Webinar

On 24 January 2018 at 10.00 CET, Emily Edwards will be leading a ReSIG webinar entitled ‘Getting started with action research’. This will take place in ReSIG’s Adobe Connect room.


At the IATEFL Conference in Brighton in April 2018, ReSIG and LASIG will be organizing a joint pre-conference event on researching autonomy.

Sarah Mercer and Daniel Xerri, Joint ReSIG Coordinators

From the Young Learners and Teenagers SIG

24-25 November 2017: IATEFL Annual Web Conference

The annual IATEFL Web Conference will be held on 24-25 November. Of particular interest to YLTSIG members are the following talks:

‘Values education for children: issues, challenges and solutions’ by Carol Read

‘Elvis is not dead: dealing with ethics and fake news in the lower secondary classroom’ by Bruno Andrade

Please visit the IATEFL website for further announcements.

26 November 2017: ReSIG and YLTSIG joint Webinar

We are collaborating with ReSIG to bring you another innovative webinar on 26 November at 16.00 CET. Sandie Mourão will focus on ‘Research in the primary English classroom: collecting informed consent from children’. Please check the IATEFL website and SIG social media for more details.

9 April 2018: Brighton PCE

The YLTSIG 2018 pre-conference event titled 'Children’s rights, children’s future: practical applications in TEYL' offers an exploration of ways to incorporate the United Nations Rights of the Child and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in YL ELT. Annamaria Pinter and Harry Kuchah Kuchah are our plenary speakers and will unpack children’s rights and the SDGs in YL ELT.

We will build on their plenaries using short TED style talks by speakers from early years, primary and secondary ELT contexts. We would like to announce the following speakers, each giving a talk:

Early Years: Gail Ellis and Jen Dobson

Primary: Nayr Ibrahim and Katherine Bilsborough

Lower Secondary: Carol Read and Laura McWilliams

Upper Secondary: Judy Boyle and Rachael Pooley

The pre-conference event will culminate with a debate around a ‘pedagogy-changing’ motion led by a specialist YL ELT panel. Please book here.

David Valente, YLTSIG Coordinator

From the Learner Autonomy SIG

24-25 November 2017: IATEFL Annual Web Conference

The LASIG panel at this year’s IATEFL web conference on Saturday, 25 November, from 12:00 to 13:00 GMT aims to combat some of the long-standing prejudices surrounding language learner autonomy in practice. Internationally acclaimed speakers from six countries will come together to share their opinions and experiences on the topic and discuss their successes and setbacks encountered when implementing (aspects of) language learner autonomy in their respective contexts. Our moderator will actively integrate the audience into the discussion by running live polls and collecting your comments and questions from the chat room which will be posed to the presenters. You can find out more about both the programme and our panel speakers on the IATEFL website.

26 January 2018: LASIG Webinar with Hayo Reinders

The next LASIG webinar with Hayo Reinders on 'Augmented reality for encouraging out-of-class learning' will take place on 26 January at 20.00 GMT. The webinar will illustrate recent developments in the area of augmented reality and give examples of activities which can be easily adopted for enhancing autonomous language learning. Find out more about Hayo on his website. Our webinars are open to members and non-members and are free of charge.

9 April 2018: Brighton PCE

Our 2018 pre-conference event in Brighton will bring together practice and research under the title 'Learner autonomy and practitioner research'. Please book now on the IATEFL website. Apart from our plenary speakers, Phil Benson of Macquarie University, Australia and Judith Hanks of the University of Leeds, UK, a number of interactive poster presentations by teachers/researchers will touch upon some of the key aspects regarding learner autonomy and practitioner research. During the pre-conference event, there will be ample time for participants to discuss projects and establish networks. We are looking forward to welcoming you in Brighton 2018 for an enriching day. You can find out more about the event as well as our plenary speakers online. Booking for the pre-conference event is open and places are limited.

LASIG Webinar Series

In a new combined Independence and webinar series, 'Autonomy in context: institutional experiences', LASIG will be featuring institutions around the world that are implementing learner autonomy programs. In you are interested in giving an interview and/or presenting a webinar about your experience within an institution, or would like to suggest an institution, contact Giovanna Tassinari with a short proposal.

Christian Ludwig, LASIG Coordinator

From the Learning Technologies SIG 

24-25 November 2017: IATEFL Annual Web Conference

Log on to attend the 3rd IATEFL Web Conference and in particular, we would like to invite our members to attend our forum with our invited speakers on the LT SIG slot. Nik Peachey, David Read and Shelly Sanchez Terrell will be presenting on Friday 24 November 18.30 - 19.45 GMT each one for about 15 minutes with a 15-minute Q & A slot at the end. The topics of the talks will be:

- Producing Language Creatively 

- Favourite Online tools to promote student autonomy

- Using Google Add-ons to support student success

We hope this new format will give a taste of the variety and range of expertise our Learning Technologies SIG can mobilise from amongst its members!!!  Please stay tuned through the IATEFL Web Conference link for news on the rest of the programme and the link to log into the online conference room.

9-10 February 2018: LTSIG strand at IH BCN ELT Conference

The IATEFL Learning Technologies SIG is pleased to announce its strand at the International House Barcelona ELT Conference to be held on 9-10 February 2018. Our expert line-up includes Gavin Dudeney, Sophia Mavridi, Shaun Wilden, Barbara Gardner and Valentina Dodge, who are to address key issues in the field of Learning Technologies. LTSIG members will receive a special 10% discount for this event. 

Roving reporter travel grant: we are delighted to offer a grant to an LTSIG member who wishes to be the 'LTSIG Roving Reporter' for our strand at the conference. The grant winner will be expected to attend all five sessions of our strand and write articles on them for LTSIG publication. To help capture the feel of the strand, it is expected that five write-ups will be produced within a week of the conference and a short review (or video) of the strand will be produced during the conference.

The award consists of:

- a total of 300 GBP for travel and accommodation

- waived registration fees for both days

Members can apply for the travel grant here.

9 April 2018: Brighton PCE - our PCE Theme and Speakers!

It's that time of the year when you may be making decisions about IATEFL! Our next pre-conference event in Brighton promises to give you new insights into Virtual & Augmented Reality projects. Our topic: 'Altered Reality Meets Language Learning’. Our LTSIG has a tradition of holding its pre-conference events in venues outside the main conference buildings, so do book early. Our pre-conference event promises to be one of the most exciting, but we have a smaller number of seats at next year’s venue.

Join now while you can still take advantage of the Early Bird Discount (available till Thursday 11 January 2018). You can book for our LTSIG pre-conference event here.

6th ELT Conference in Malta: LT SIG Strand reviews

The LTSIG strand at the 6th ELT Conference in Malta featured nine speakers. The location, hospitality but, above all, the quality of the presentations made this an outstanding event; our LTSIG member speakers received a warm welcome and forged a strong connection with the ELT Council organisers and delegates.

Speakers included our Travel Grant winner Grace Alchini (Mexico), Susana Galante (Argentina), Laura Portelli, Karen McRae & Kevin Spiteri (Malta), Sophia Mavridi, Marisa Constantinides, Jake Delatolas & Dimitris Primalis (Greece).

Our website editor, Sylvia Guinan, has put together a blog post with reports and videos of the various presentations and people at this conference. You can access it here but there are many posts with photos and videos on our Facebook page as well.

Write for us

Remember we are always looking for good content so do find some time to write for us!

There is always a call for new content on our blog – a new series of teachers sharing their favourite tools and apps has just been launched and we hope that members old and new will contribute their top tools and top tips!

Click here to let us know what you would like to write for us!

Join our Social Media Groups and Pages

Our Facebook Page for announcements and news

Our Facebook Group for discussions and postings by members 

Our Twitter timeline for lively conversations during events and throughout the year

Sophia Mavridi, LTSIG Coordinator

From the Business English SIG

Photos, videos and slides from some of the talks and proceedings at the 30th BESIG Annual Conference, held in cooperation with ReSIG in Malta from 10-12 November 2017, can be accessed via the BESIG website.

BESIG is back online early in 2018

BESIG's next online event will be a webinar early next year with Heather Hansen, a speech and communication specialist working internationally. Heather gave a exceptionally well-received presentation as part of the BESIG Day at the IATEFL Annual Conference in Glasgow earlier this year, and we're excited to bring her insights on business English training to our wider online audience in the new year. Please keep an eye on the BESIG website for a firm date and further details.

9 April 2018: BESIG-ESPSIG Joint PCE

Booking is open for our joint pre-conference event with ESP SIG at the IATEFL Conference in Brighton on 9 April 2018. The format is a World Café and the title is 'The ESP-BE World Café: Exploring and sharing best practices in English’. Please check the pre-conference event website for further details and how to book.

12 April 2018, BESIG Showcase, Brighton

Join us on Thursday, 12 April at the IATEFL Annual Conference in Brighton for a day full of talks with a business English focus. The day will end with our Open Forum, where you can find out more about the work of BESIG and how being a member can benefit you as a business English teacher. Further details of the Showcase talks will be available soon.

Dana Poklepovic and Evan Frendo, Joint BESIG Coordinators

From the Teacher Development SIG

3rd Annual TDSIG Web Carnival: call for proposals

TDSIG is currently working on a few different events for the Winter/Spring 2018!

Our 3rd Annual TDSIG Web Carnival aims to stitch together an informative and inspiring tapestry of TD: stories of success from teachers around the world which will weave a picture of how teacher development is often personalized, always empowering, and never exactly the same in different times and places. A call for proposals is open until December 15, 2017.

9 April 2018: TDSIG-LAMSIG Joint PCE

Of course, we’re excited about what’s happening with our joint pre-conference event with LAMSIG in April on 'Personalised Teacher Development: is it achievable’. You can add it to your IATEFL Conference registration package.

December eBulletin on Reflective TD

Beyond these delicious events (and a couple others still in very early stages…our excitement is palpable!), look for our December eBulletin on Reflective TD (members only), with accompanying podcast and TDLive meetups sometime around the new year!

For more info about these and other upcoming treats through TDSIG, please bookmark the Upcoming in TDSIG page.

Sinead Laffan and Tyson Seburn, Joint TDSIG Coordinators


From the English for Specific Purposes SIG

Committee update - joint Events Coordinator vacancy

We have had some changes in the ESP SIG committee and there is now a vacancy for a joint Events Coordinator. If you are interested in applying for this role, please get in touch:

ESP SIG Journal’s Golden Anniversary

This year marks the 50th Issue of the IATEFL ESP SIG Journal Professional and Academic English, concentrating on articles that look at developments in IATEFL ESP since the first issue in January 1994. We have a new deadline for articles: 5 January 2018. Keep an eye on your inboxes for the call for papers from IATEFL Head Office!

9 April 2018: Brighton PCE

Our pre-conference event at the 2018 IATEFL annual conference in Brighton, UK, will be held jointly with the BESIG. Our working title is ‘The ESP-BE World Café: Exploring and Sharing Best Practices in English’ – watch this space as the pre-conference event develops!

10 April 2018: Brighton ESP SIG Showcase

Thank you to all who submitted proposals for the ESP strand of the IATEFL conference in Brighton 2018. Head Office will be emailing successful speakers by the end of this month. We look forward to welcoming you to our ESP SIG Showcase!

Aysen Guven, ESPSIG Coordinator

From the Materials Writing SIG

24–25 November 2017: IATEFL online conference

IATEFL MaWSIG is curating a session as part of the IATEFL online conference in November. The MaWSIG session ‘Ways into Materials Writing’ is on Friday 24 November 17:10–18:10 GMT. There is no single route into writing for publication, but our expert panel will share tips that can help you along the way – and many of them are helpful for developing materials for your own classroom, too. Our panel includes Andrew Dilger (a managing editor at OUP), Deb Tricker (Group Publishing Director at Richmond-Santillana), plus MaWSIG committee member Lewis Lansford (freelance author and speaker). Join us to hear our panel share their answers to frequently asked questions about writing ELT materials. You’ll learn what makes for good materials in terms of content and design, what the latest trends are in ELT materials, what publishers look for in potential authors – and, of course, what MaWSIG can do for you as teachers and writers. For more information, visit the MaWSIG website Upcoming Events page. Register here for the IATEFL online conference.

14 December 2017: MaWSIG Christmas Party

If you’re based in the south-east of the UK, don’t miss this year’s Christmas Party. Join us for fun, food and drink from 6.30 pm in the upstairs function room of the Jericho Tavern: 56 Walton St, Oxford OX2 6AE – just a 10–15-minute walk from Oxford train station. Pit your wits against the best brains in ELT in our Christmas competition! Catch up with friends, and network with colleagues old and new! Tickets include a glass of bubbles on arrival and finger food. Buy your ticket here: MaWSIG members: £12 / Non-members: £15.

9–11 March 2018: IATEFL MaWSIG strand at TESOL Spain

MaWSIG has a special strand running all day on 10 March at TESOL Spain in Madrid. More information about the convention, and registration details, can be found on the TESOL Spain website.

9 April 2018: Brighton PCE

Next year the theme of the pre-conference event in Brighton is ‘Writing for the World’. You can read more about our plans on the MaWSIG website Upcoming Events page. Do you fancy attending the PCE for free? Are you a teacher or emerging writer who has not previously professionally published ELT materials? Have you created materials that fit this broad theme? Then enter our competition to be in with a chance of winning a free ticket to our PCE! We are looking for high-quality material that has not been published elsewhere, and we look forward to receiving entries from any ‘newbie’ writers. Open at all IATEFL members. Competition details are on our website here, and hurry – the competition ends 30 November.

Rachael Roberts, MaWSIG Joint Coordinator