International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language

Linking, developing and supporting English Language Teaching professionals worldwide




July 2017

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Welcome to the July-August issue of our eBulletin. As you will see, there is a lot going on in the months to come in terms of webinars, online events, as well as face-to-face professional development opportunities.

Among other things, you will also find the link to an open-access publication on teacher research, and a call for a competition inviting you to share an innovative classroom idea with fellow teachers.

Hoping that you will find something that gets you excited and involved, 

With best wishes, 

Margit Szesztay, President and Chair Publications Committee

From Head Office

IATEFL Conference 2018 in Brighton

Whether you've been to more IATEFL Conferences than you can remember or this is your very first time, we recommend that you take a few moments to read through one of our Helpful Guides before starting your online registration or submitting your speaker proposal. They will guide you through each step of the process, and can be found here. Remember, the speaker proposal deadline is 15.00 GMT (16.00 BST) on Thursday 14 September 2017. Early submissions are welcome.


The annual conference in Brighton 2018 is gearing up to be a really memorable event. At Head Office we have begun planning the event with lots of fresh ideas, including new and exciting sponsorship packages. These opportunities are created for companies to gain maximum exposure before, during and after the conference and exhibition, and to give your company the ability to interact with the ELT community and learn about their interests and needs. 

If you are interested in finding out more, please do not hesitate to contact IATEFL.

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IATEFL would like to extend a huge thank you to Pilgrims, the first sponsors of the Brighton conference and exhibition in 2018. For more information about Pilgrims, and what they can offer, please go the Pilgrims website.


Following the success of the IATEFL Exhibition in Glasgow, we are busy preparing for Brighton in 2018. We will launch the exhibition to clients on 9 October 2017. If you would like to be added to the mailing list for the exhibition, to keep up to dates with the planning please email us at:

IATEFL monthly webinars

The IATEFL monthly webinar for July was with Fabiana Casella. Her session entitled ‘Once you go global, there is no coming back’, was recorded and is now available for members to watch by logging in to the members area on the IATEFL website and selecting ‘webinars’.

You will also see there that next month's webinar, on 19 August, is with Nicola Meldrum and is entitled 'How can technology support and facilitate teacher development?'.

At the same time, why not check out the host of other webinars we have run which are available only to IATEFL members.


From the SIGs

From the Research SIG

ReSIG Open-access publication

ReSIG’s latest open-access publication consists of a book entitled Developing Insights into Teacher-research. Its editors are Anne Burns, Kenan Dikilitaş, Richard Smith and Mark Wyatt.

Festival of Teacher Research

ReSIG is supporting the International Festival of Teacher Research in ELT. It consists of a number of global events taking place in 2017.

10-12 November 2017: BESIG Conference

The 2017 annual BESIG conference, in cooperation with IATEFL ReSIG, will take place in Malta on 10-12 November 2017. Registration is now open.

26 November 2017: Joint Webinar

ReSIG and YLTSIG will be holding a joint webinar on 26 November 2017 at 15.00 GMT (16.00 CET) at ReSIG’s Adobe Connect room. The webinar, which will be led by Sandie Mourão, is entitled ‘Research in the primary English classroom: Collecting informed consent from children’.

Call for Webinar Presenters

ReSIG would like to arrange a series of webinars on: how to write a great abstract; how to use research databases effectively; how to research effectively; how to plan an essay; and how to plan a dissertation. If you are interested, please email ReSIG with a short proposal, supporting statement and very brief bio.

Sarah Mercer and Daniel Xerri, Joint ReSIG Coordinators

From the Global Issues SIG

Special Days Competition

Is there a special day in the year that you feel should be celebrated or honoured in some way? If so, could you be our summer competition winner? Read on to find out more…

We’re inviting you to submit a ‘Calendar of Special Days’ lesson to add to our website collection (please note that it should be a different day from those already on our site). We will give 2 free PCE days as prizes and add all the entries to our website. We are hoping to put all these lessons together into one publication on ‘Special Days’ and distribute this widely amongst interested teachers. Please visit our website to see examples of Special Days lessons and the format we’d like you to submit your lesson plan here.

Closing date for the competition is 31 August 2017 and the results will be announced soon after that. You can submit your lesson directly to the website, or to us at GISIG.

GISIG Scholarship

The Esther Lucas Scholarship is named in memory of one of the founders of GlSIG and aims to assist a teacher to attend the 52nd IATEFL conference in Brighton in 2018. If you want to find out more then please follow this link.

The submission deadline is 15.00 GMT (16.00 BST) on Tuesday 18 July 2017.

Training Volunteer Teachers of Refugees, Greece

GISIG has established contact with organisers of schools for refugees in camps in Thessaloniki, Polykastro, Serres and Nea Kavala, in Greece. One round of face-to-face training took place in May and the next round is due to happen in August. In between these training events, teachers have each been paired up with mentors who provide distance support through email discussions and Skype conversations about teaching and learning.

Linda Ruas and Julietta Schoenmann, GISIG Joint Coordinators

From the Testing Evaluation and Assessment SIG

28-29 October 2017: TEASIG Conference

Registration is open for this 2-day IATEFL TEASIG event, in association with CRELLA (The Centre for Research in English Language Learning and Assessment), which will take place at the University of Bedfordshire in Luton, UK, on 28-29 October 2017. Online registration can be completed here, with further conference details found on the TEASIG website.

TEASIG Scholarships

A reminder that the closing date for applications for TEASIG scholarships is 15.00 GMT (16.00 BST) Tuesday 18 July. These scholarships are for up to two teachers who are members of IATEFL and are interested in contributing to the work of TEASIG. They will attend the 2018 IATEFL Annual Conference in Brighton, UK and give a presentation on the TEASIG Day.

Any applications received after the closing date will not be accepted. Information about IATEFL scholarships can be found here and details of the TEASIG scholarship here.

Newsletter: Call for contributions

TEASIG is accepting submissions for the TEASIG Newsletter on testing-related issues.  The editors welcome contributions from members and non-members of TEASIG alike.

You can find guidelines on the TEASIG Newsletter site on how to contribute and you can contact the editors with any questions you may have. The deadline for the next issue is 30 September 2017 but contributions are welcome at any time.

Judith Mader and Neil Bullock, Joint TEASIG Coordinators


From the Young Learners and Teenagers SIG

Committee Changes

After four and a half years of service to YLTSIG, Christina Giannikas has decided to step down from the committee. Christina served as Social Media Coordinator and more recently as Joint SIG Coordinator and was involved in several significant projects. These included her role as Editor-in-Chief for the SIG-Garnet publication, ‘Children Learning English: From Research to Practice’ as well as leading the SIG’s inaugural web conference, ’30 Pearls of YLT Wisdom’ in celebration of our pearl anniversary. We wish Christina all the best and thank her very much for her contributions to YLTSIG.

Christina’s position will not be refilled as the YLTSIG committee agreed to return to one coordinator and therefore, David Valente will continue as sole YLTSIG Coordinator. We are confident that the commitment, potential and vision of our current committee members will ensure the continuity of our mission as YLTSIG.

Guest Blogger for July

Our latest guest blog post is by Jen Dobson and focuses on a crucial area for young learner ELT, ‘Online safeguarding in primary ELT’. Please see the post here and feel free to leave your comments.

23 September 2017: Joint Webinar

YLTSIG is teaming up with MaWSIG on 23 September 2017, 17.00 GMT to offer a webinar relevant to members and followers of both SIGs. Katherine Bilsborough will focus on 'Writing good quality primary materials: tips, tools and common sense'. In this webinar, Katherine will present tips and tools that can help us make our materials better so that our primary learners get the quality they deserve.

Details of how to join the webinar will be announced on both SIGs’ social media channels nearer the time.

Surveys for Members and Social Media Followers

YLTSIG PR Coordinator, Anna Britton and Social Media Coordinator, Shay Coyne will be surveying our members as well as social media followers at the end of July. This is to ensure members, friends and followers of the SIG have a voice and input into our future vision and direction. We would be very grateful if you could spare some time to give us your feedback and comments.

Members’ Only Content

We are working with IATEFL Head Office to create a members’ only zone on the main IATEFL website for YLTSIG content. This will host all SIG newsletters published between 2013 to date. This zone will be ready in early August and in the meantime, you can freely download the public access back issues from 1998-2012, here.

Summer Edition of TEYLT Worldwide

Members will receive the summer edition of our newsletter toward the end of August. This features a ‘Spotlight on YL ELT management’, a hot topics feature on raising awareness of trafficking and modern slavery in upper secondary ELT as well as all our usual features.

21-22 October 2017: TESOL Greece colloquium

YLTSIG is supporting the TESOL Greece Young Learners Colloquium, 'Innovations in ELT for Children and Teenagers'. The event will be in Athens on 21-22 October and features two YLTSIG supported speakers, Katherine Bilsborough giving the opening plenary and Joanna Budden as closing plenary speaker. To find out about the sub themes and to submit a proposal, visit the TESOL Greece website.

David Valente, YLTSIG Coordinator

Business English SIG

6 August 2017: Weekend Workshop 

Ben Dobbs of BD Communications will be giving BESIG’s 73rd online workshop on 6 August on the topic of materials-light business English training. Full details of the webinar are now available on the BESIG website.

BESIG and ReSIG Webinar in August

Together with ReSIG and in anticipation of the thirtieth BESIG Annual Conference in November, BESIG hopes to organise a pre-conference early bird registration webinar on the topic of research in business English for the end of August. Please visit our website or contact Rob Howard from more details.

10-12 November 2017: BESIG Conference

Online registration is now open for the 30th BESIG Annual Conference, being held this year in cooperation with ReSIG in Malta from 10-12 November 2017. The early bird deadline is 1 September, so make sure you register before then to take advantage of the reduced rate. If you qualify for a further reduction, please contact your local teachers' association or check your inbox (BESIG members only) for the promo code. Full details of the plenary and keynote speakers are now available on the BESIG website and the preliminary schedule will be published soon. We look forward to seeing you there.

Julia Waldner, BESIG Coordinator

From the Materials Writing SIG

MaWSIG webinar: recording available

A recording of Nik Peachey’s webinar ‘Becoming your own publisher’ (3 June 2017) is now available in the members’ area of the IATEFL website.

Events Team reshuffle

IATEFL MaWSIG has replaced two of its three joint Events Coordinators. Rachel Daw left because she has moved on from the world of ELT. Lizzie Pinard resigned after taking on a new and very demanding job. Following an election in June, the remaining joint Events Coordinator, Aleksandra Popovski, was joined by the two successful applicants, Clare Maas and Phil Bird. You can read about them on the MaWSIG website.

30 September 2017: Macedonia Conference

We are delighted to announce that ELTAM, the English Language Teachers’ Association of the Republic of Macedonia, is teaming up with IATEFL MaWSIG for a one-day conference entitled Every teacher is a materials writer. This event will give participants the opportunity to learn more about materials writing and to find out what it takes to write and publish their own ELT materials. For more details and to register for the conference (deadline 31 August 2017), go to the ELTAM website.

24–25 November 2017: IATEFL Online conference

IATEFL MaWSIG is curating a session called ‘Ways into Materials Writing’ as part of the IATEFL online conference in November. Keep an eye on the MaWSIG website Upcoming Events page for more details.

Rachael Roberts, MaWSIG Coordinator


From the Learning Technologies SIG 

LTSIG Scholarship deadline

By the time you receive this the deadline for the scholarships may well have passed – if not, remember that the deadline is Tuesday 18 July at 15.00 GMT for the Diana Eastment scholarship and our Roving Reporter travel grant.

5-6 October 2017: Online conference

The 2nd Annual Online conference on Research into Using Technology for Language Learning, jointly organised by LTSIG, OLLReN (Laureate International Universities and Cambridge University Press), is still accepting proposals for papers. We welcome proposals for 25-minute sessions (plus 5 minutes’ Q & A). 

Deadline for submitting proposals is Monday 31 July 2017, 16.00 GMT.

Full information about the call for papers and the conference can be accessed here.

Malta Conference: LTSIG Strand

We’re pleased to announce that 14 talk workshop proposals have been accepted for the 6th ELT Council Conference in Malta, as part of the LTSIG strand. Confirmed plenary speakers: Sarah Mercer, Penny Ur, David Nunan, Andy Hockley and Robert McLarty. Do remember that the ELT Council conference does not require a membership fee but only a small conference attendance fee.

Please follow our blog for some posts and interviews with the travel grant winners  and other speakers and LTSIG members participating at this event!

Joint LTSIG & TESOL Call-Is Publication

Teaching English Reflectively with Technology,  a joint publication by IATEFL Learning Technologies SIG with contributions from the TESOL CALL-IS, should have now reached all our members’ inboxes and contains a great number of articles, which teachers using technology will enjoy reading.


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:

Sophia Mavridi, LTSIG Coordinator