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Reader Response Emerging Technologies Reviews Networking

In this issue: Feature Articles EFL Writers’ Pausing and Composing Problems: An Introspective-Retrospective Data-based Study –– Muhammad Muhammad Abdel Abdel Latif Latif

The Role of the Transformational Leader for Quality ELT Staff Development in Organizational Learning –– Allison Allison Litz Litz && David David Litz Litz Reflections in the Gulf –– Nick Nick Poultney Poultney

SIG Group Reports Chapter Reports


C o n t e n t s Perspec tives

Volume 16 No. 1 January 2009

From the Editor

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Message from the President

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TESOL Arabia Conference Update

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Feature Articles EFL Writers’ Pausing and Composing Problems: An IntrospectiveRetrospective Data-based Study The Role of the Transformational Leader for Quality ELT Staff Development in Organizational Learning Reflections in the Gulf

Muhammad Abdel Latif

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Allison Litz & David Litz

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Nick Poultney

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Neil McBeath

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D. Ireson Barclay

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Mark Vevers

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Loretta Consolati

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Michael Fields

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Ian Cull

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T. Leo Schmitt

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Les Kirkham

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Peter B. McLaren

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16th Annual Korean TESOL Conference, Seoul, Korea

Justin Shewel

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Fourth Annual International TEFL China Conference

Les Kirkham

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Reader Response The Two Cultures Debate Continues – A Reply to Graeme Tennent

Emerging Technologies 24/7 Mobile Video and the ELL Classroom

Reviews Macbeth, The ELT Graphic Novel Letters about ANZAC Day World Pass Upper-Intermediate and Advanced Spotlight on FCE: Student’s Book World Around

Networking English Australia Conference 2008 The 12th International INGED ELT Conference

Calendar of Upcoming Events

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TESOL Arabia News TESOL Arabia News

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Special Interest Group Reports

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Chapter Reports

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TESOL Arabia Membership Form

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Perspectives Contributor Guidelines

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From the Editors

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Co-Editors Rebecca Woll Abu Dhabi Men's College

Abu Dhabi, UAE Melanie Gobert

On behalf of Melanie Gobert and myself, we sincerely hope that our first issue has managed to include “a tasty morsel” for its entire readership. Here is an overview of what this issue contains:

Abu Dhabi Men's College-CERT

Abu Dhabi, UAE

Naturally this issue has a piece on the upcoming 15th International TESOL Arabia Conference being held at the JW Marriott Hotel in Dubai from March 12-14. Read all about the plethora of speakers, workshops and “oh so much more” in store for all who attend this fantastic annual event on pages 4-5.

Copy Editor Allestree Fisher Abu Dhabi Men's College Abu Dhabi, UAE

In the first of three feature articles in this issue, Muhammad Abdel Latif, shares a study he conducted with Egyptian EFL university students on the amount of pausing they do during the writing process. EFL Writers’ Pausing and Composing Problems: An Introspective-Retrospective Data-based Study specifically looks at intra-sentential and inter-sentential pausing as well as the pausing which takes place during the pre-writing and post-writing phases. The study’s results may or may not surprise you but should hopefully raise a few questions as to how you approach writing in the classroom. Ponder that!

Reviews Editor Atta Gebril UAE University Al Ain, UAE

Publication Committee

In The Role of the Transformational Leader for Quality ELT Staff Development in Organizational Learning, Allison and David Litz look at the important issue of how K-12 English Language Teaching (ELT) should respond to the immense degree of change and reform taking place in Middle-Eastern countries like the UAE. They stress that any changes in education should be done with serious consideration being paid to such matters as leadership and staff development.

Mashael Al Hamly Kuwait Embassy in Dubai Dubai, UAE Rebecca Woll Abu Dhabi Men's College Abu Dhabi, UAE

Finally, Nick Poultney, in his article, Reflections in the Gulf, suggests that cultural context should have a greater impact on the methodology a teacher employs in the classroom. Nick argues that traditional activities some may consider tired and passé are still relevant when one considers the preferences of students in the Gulf. Agree or disagree, we are sure that this article will inspire debate amongst those who read it.

Melanie Gobert Abu Dhabi Men's College Abu Dhabi, UAE

In this issue we also have a Readers Response from Neil McBeath and an Emerging Technologies article, 24/7 Mobile Video and the ELL Classroom from D. Ireson Barclay, which looks at one way education can provide knowledge or learning to our students in an increasingly technological world where information is literally at our fingertips 24/7.

Sufian Abu Rmaileh UAE University Al Ain, UAE

Although our learning curve when putting this first issue together was quite steep, we remain hopeful that everyone who reads this issue of Perspectives will be able to find something which satisfies within its pages. We would greatly appreciate any feedback from you on this issue. Furthermore, we also welcome ideas for future issues as well as submissions whether they be for feature article consideration, an effective teaching tip or a description of some cutting edge technological innovation. Send any/all comments and submissions to either rwoll@hct.ac.ae or mgobert@hct.ac.ae

Fatma Alwan Supervisor, Ministry of Education, UAE

Hope to see you all at the Conference!!

Kourosh Lachini University of Qatar Doha, Qatar

Advisory Panel

Christine Coombe Dubai Men’s College Dubai, UAE

Janet Olearski Petroleum Institute Abu Dhabi, UAE Olivia Riordan American University of Sharjah Sharjah, UAE

CREDITS Layout / Artwork Sudeep Kumar

Rebecca Woll

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Melanie Gobert

Printing

Co-Editors, Perspectives

International Printing Press Dubai, UAE

The co-editors would like to remind the readers that the views expressed in this periodical are those of the individual authors. These views are not necessarily shared by the other authors in this issue or by TESOL Arabia. Responsibility for the content and opinion of articles and advertisements rests with the authors. TESOL Arabia is a non-profit organisation based in the United Arab Emirates with membership from the Arabian Gulf and beyond. TESOL Arabia does not discriminate against any person on the basis of race, gender, national origin, disability, religion, age, or native language. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.tesolarabia.org

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Message from the President

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Someone mentioned to me recently that membership of teachers’ associations throughout the world has been declining over the past few years. Looking at our own membership statistics, it seems we have also had a dip, but this year the evidence suggests that this is being reversed and membership is climbing once again. Why should this be? Why should there still be a perceived need for a teachers’ association in the broader field of education, especially when teachers’ workloads seem to be increasing? The English language teaching landscape in the Gulf has certainly changed radically in the past few years: there are more institutions at all levels of education, and in particular there are far more private institutions. There are also more institutions, both public and private, that teach partly or entirely in English. Along with this expansion there has been an increased awareness of the role of the professional development (PD) of its staff in the effectiveness of an organisation. In some worthy organisations this has always been provided, and in the even worthier ones it has been provided as an option rather than a compulsory activity. Most organisations see the need for training their staff in, for example, new computer applications, new assessment procedures, or the use of new materials. Once adopted by the institution, they want to be sure that staff can use them effectively. However, this kind of in-house training can tend to be ‘tactical’ compared to the wider, “strategic” development that can result from the voluntary pursuit of PD. And this is where teachers’ associations such as ours can come in. They provide a wider, strategic development that can help shape the career of the individual professional, as well as give them experience in leadership and administration or an opportunity to present and publish in the field. Members also have the opportunity to meet and socialize with people from outside the workplace, which similarly raises their eyes to the horizons of the profession. The very fact that participation is voluntary (“self-directed,” “elective,” “individualized” or any of the other similar descriptions in use) means it has a different impact on our individual development than compulsory training. I see our activities as complementary to the PD activities of institutions rather than being in competition with them. The number and range of the best organisations in the Gulf who are prepared to go into partnership with us by offering us sponsorship tends to suggest that they agree with me.

Les Kirkham President, TESOL Arabia

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TESOL Arabia Conference Update

15th Annual TESOL Arabia International Conference and Exhibition 2009  Thursday 12 March to Saturday 14 March, 2009 Pre-conference professional development courses on Wednesday 11 March, 2009 JW Marriott Hotel, Deira, Dubai “English in Learning: Learning in English” Look for details at http://tesolarabia.org/conference Presentations, Workshops, an Exhibition, a Job Fair, Demonstrations, Poster Presentations, and much, much more… Further information? Contact the Conference Chairs at

TACON2009@tesolarabia.org

 The 15th Annual International TESOL Arabia Conference and Exhibition is almost upon us. The 2009 Conference, due to take place March 12-14 with Pre-Conference events on March 11, at the J.W. Marriott Hotel, Dubai, UAE, is once again proving to be an attractive proposition for English language teachers across the Gulf region and indeed worldwide. Following TESOL Arabia Conference tradition, this Conference once again brings our ever-popular exhibition of major educational publishers, institutions and organizations. In addition, you will also be able to find the Job Fair. Recruiters from around the region will be offering on-site interviews to suitably qualified Conference participants. So if you are thinking about moving on from your present situation, this is the place to come and find a new one! As the reputation of TESOL Arabia as a Professional Development organization grows, so does the reputation of its Annual International Conference (see the Letter from the President in this issue for his personal experience of this). Every year, the number of submitted breakout session proposals increases and this year was no exception, with Conference and Exhibition 2009 receiving a record number of 384 proposals! As the Conference needed 161 breakout sessions, this means that the proposals team had a tough job with their evaluations, with the ratio of accepted to declined proposals being 1:2.3. This is excellent news for TESOL Arabia and the Conference as it means only top quality breakout sessions were accepted! In addition to the above 161 breakout sessions, the Conference once again has brought in a truly stellar line-up of plenary and featured speakers who will all be presenting two sessions for the main Conference. These speakers are Tom Farrell, David Marsh, Paul Nation, George Pickering, Barbara Seidlhofer and Jane Willis as plenary speakers and Phil Benson, Beverly Derewianka, Mario Rinvolucri, Ema Ushioda, Dave Volume 16



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Willis and Cheryl Zimmerman as featured speakers. With this distinguished line-up of expertise from around the world, the Conference is sure to provide food for thought for all our Conference participants. This year, the Conference acknowledges the role played by content area teachers who teach through the medium of English. As well as having a dedicated Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) strand running throughout the Conference during the breakout sessions, some of our plenary and featured speakers have been brought in especially because of their expertise in this area. So please tell your colleagues who teach Science, Maths, Computers, Business, etc., that this Conference is for them as well! Another new departure for the 2009 Conference is the Exhibitor Presentation Strand. This strand consists of commercial presentations in which publishers, educational organizations, and this year a theatre group, can showcase their latest materials and initiatives. Conference participants will now be able to get an in depth look at what is new in the ELT world! TESOL Arabia is committed to supporting your professional development and one of our goals is to offer you a wide variety of professional development events. In addition to the Conference proper, we are once again pleased to be able to offer our ever popular Certificate Course and 2 Pre-Conference Courses. The Certificate Course, Enhancing Teacher Effectiveness, has sessions by our plenary speakers,Tom Farrell and Jane Willis, by our featured speakers, Phil Benson, Mario Rinvolucri and Dave Willis, and by our specially invited speakers Kay Bentley, Sean Conley, Christine Coombe and Johnette Downing. The Certificate Course will cover a plethora of aspects to improve teacher effectiveness, including such things as management issues, CLIL, designing and adapting tasks, teaching the skills, using music in the classroom, self-reflection, learner autonomy, along with task-based learning to name a few. Participants on the course must attend a minimum of seven sessions in order to qualify for the Certificate. In order for Certificate Course registrants to be able to maximize their participation in the Conference as a whole, 4 of the offered sessions are scheduled outside the normal conference day, (i.e. in the hour before the and after the Conference start and finish times). Our two Pre-Conference Courses on March 11 have proved to be very popular. So popular in fact that, Vocabulary Acquisition and Teaching, with Paul Nation and Cheryl Zimmerman, sold out by the early bird registration deadline! So if you haven’t registered for this yet, I’m afraid you have missed out on a wonderful opportunity! However, all is not doom and gloom as there are still a few places available on our second Pre-Conference Course, English and the Curriculum. If you are interested in participating in this course please check the TESOL Arabia website for up-to-date information on seat availability. All in all, this year’s Conference is carrying on the long-standing TESOL Arabia tradition of providing top quality professional development opportunities. All we need now to make this a truly successful event is YOU! If you haven’t already registered for the Conference or you would like to register for the Certificate Course, Enhancing Teacher Effectiveness, or the Job Fair, you can still do so on-site at the Conference. For more detailed information concerning the Conference, please visit the TESOL Arabia website at http://tesolarabia.org and click on the conference tab. Tell your teaching colleagues about this wonderful opportunity and come with them to TESOL Arabia Conference and Exhibition 2009! We look forward to seeing you all there! Les Kirkham and Sandra Oddy TESOL Arabia Conference and Exhibition 2009, Co-chairs

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EFL Writers’ Pausing and Composing Problems: An Introspective-Retrospective Data-based Study

Muhammad M. Abdel Latif Institute of Educational Studies, Cairo University, Egypt

This article reports on a study that looked at the pausing of Egyptian students while composing their texts in an EFL context and the causes of such pausing. Data sources of the study included the think-aloud and retrospective interview protocols, and linguistic knowledge and writing quality scores. The study revealed that both linguistic knowledge and text quality correlate positively with inter-sentential pausing and negatively with intra-sentential pausing. The article discusses these results and their implications.

Introduction While the 1970s saw the emergence of the Englishas-a-first-language writing process studies (e.g. Emig, 1971, Perl, 1979), English-as-a-foreign-language (EFL)/English-as-a-second-language (ESL) studies occurred in an infrequent way in the early 1980s, but have increased tremendously since the late 1980s. Whereas a large number of studies have examined the writing process as a whole, other studies have looked solely at some aspects of this process such as writers’ planning, revising and use of their L1 in their EFL/ESL composing. Writing researchers also paid some attention to the temporal aspects of the composing process such as writers’ allocation of time to composing processes or behaviours (e.g. Roca de Larios, Manchón & Murphy, 2008), their text production rate (e.g. Chenoweth & Hayes, 2001; Matsuno, Sakaue, Morita & Sugiura, 2007), and their pausing (e.g. Spelman Miller, 2000). The study reported here investigated the variables influencing this latter temporal aspect of the composing process, i.e. writers’ pausing, in the Egyptian EFL context. Researchers used different approaches to investigate writers’ pausing while composing their texts. Some researchers (e.g. Butler, 1981; Bosher, 1998; Sasaki, 2000) used video-stimulated interviews to investigate their participants’ pausing. These video-stimulated interview studies did not use taxonomies for analyzing these pauses; rather they video-recorded writers’ pauses while composing and then interviewed them about the causes of such pauses. On the other

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hand, other studies which made use of key-stroke logging focused mainly on writers’ pause location. Ransdell and Levy (1994) analyzed pause location in terms of pausing within a word, pausing within a clause or a sentence, pausing within a paragraph and general pausing between paragraphs. Similarly,Van Waes and Schellens (2003) identified pauses within the sentence, at sentence boundaries, and at paragraph boundaries. On the other hand, Spelman Miller (2000) defined pause location based on potential completion pointing at a number of levels: character, word, intermediate constituent, clause and sentence. Writers may pause while composing for generating new ideas, recalling specific information (e.g. vocabulary or spelling), formulating a syntactic structure, and reviewing and evaluating, or for resting. In Sasaki’s (2000) study, expert writers were found to pause while writing less than the novice writers. This was attributed to the different levels of language proficiency of expert writers and novice ones. Some studies indicated that computer writers spent less time on pauses between sentences and paragraphs than paper and pen writers (Van Weas, 1991), and that pause length was longer prior to Tunits than within T-units and that fluent writing, measured in terms of pause length, had few pauses greater than 10 seconds (Ballard, 1994). Other studies showed that EFL/ESL writers tended to pause longer than native-English writers at all locations, particularly at clause and sentence completion points (Spelman Miller, 2000) and that they had a lower rate of production (Matsuno et al., 2007) than native writers of English. TESOL Arabia Perspectives

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Muhammad M. Abdel Latif is completing his PhD at Essex University, UK, by the end of February 2009. His PhD is on the explanatory variables of EFL writing processes and products. He is a winner of the 2008 Sheikh Nahayan Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship Award. He is currently interested in the composing process and writing affect research.

To the researcher’s best knowledge, no previous study has analyzed Arab student writers’ pausing while composing their EFL/ESL texts. This study Address for correspondence: Muhammad M. Abdel Latif, Institute reported tries to fill this gap. of Educational Studies, Cairo The present study University, Giza, Egypt; email: m_aellatif@hotmail.com investigated the target issue using a different approach by examining the types of the Egyptian EFL university student writers’ pauses in their think-aloud protocol and using the retrospective interviews to explore the causes of such pauses. In addition, the study tried to explore any potential relationships between the students’ pauses and their linguistic knowledge and writing competence. Such an approach can be informative about the students’ composing problems and the aspects they attend to while writing. Accordingly, the present study aimed at answering the following question: Is there a relationship between the student writers’ types of pausing and their linguistic knowledge and writing competence?

The Study The participants Thirty Egyptian EFL university students took part in the study. They were English majors attending a fouryear pre-service English language teaching program at an Egyptian university. All the participants were in their final year of university study at the time of conducting the study. They were all males who spoke Arabic as their native language.

The Instruments and Data Collection Procedures The think-aloud method and retrospective interview All of the 30 participants attended individual sessions in which they thought aloud while performing an argumentative task and then they were interviewed about their composing processes and problems. They were asked to write on one of three optional topics. These three optional tasks required them to argue for or against giving students short or long vacations, the view that parents are the best teachers, or regarding money as the most important aspect of a job.

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The linguistic tests Three linguistic tests were used in the present study. Allan’s (1992) 100 multiple-choice item Oxford Placement Test (OPT) Grammar Test was used to measure the participants’ English grammar knowledge. Laufer and Nation’s (1999) 90 gapfilling item Productive Vocabulary Levels Test (PVLT) and Schmitt, Schmitt and Clapham’s (2001) 150 cluster-matching item Receptive Vocabulary Levels Test (RVLT) were used to measure their English vocabulary knowledge. The three tests were administered to the participants in two collective sessions.

Data Collection and Analysis Though the think-aloud method was used to collect data about the participants’ composing strategies or verbalizations and silent pausing, the part of the study reported here is limited to analyzing their silent pausing. Likewise, the retrospective interview protocols analyzed in this report are the ones related to the participants’ pausing and composing problems. The participants’ silent pauses were classified into four types: a) pre-writing pausing, b) while-writing intra-sentential pausing, i.e. within the sentence, c) while-writing inter-sentential pausing, i.e. between the sentences, and d) postwriting pausing. The participants’ text analytic quality scores which were rated using Jacobs, Zinkgraf and Wormuth’s (1981) ESL Composition Profile as well as their scores on the three linguistic knowledge tests were compared to these types of pauses. In addition, the interview protocols analyzed were used to support the quantitative data.

Results of the Data Analysis Table 1 shows the frequencies and percentages of the participants’ silent pausing. As the table shows, the participants’ silent pausing within the sentences (n = 926) is far greater than the pauses they made between them (n = 377). Their pre- and postwriting pauses are similar and few in number. These results seem to suggest that the within-sentence thinking processes of the participants were much greater than their between-sentence ones. On the other hand, the fewer percentages of pre-writing and post-writing pauses suggest that the two types of thinking processes were far greater than their prewriting and post-writing ones.

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Table 1: Frequencies and percentages of silent pausing

Pre-writing pausing

Intra-sentential pausing

Inter-sentential pausing

After-writing pausing

Frequency

50

926

377

40

Percentage

3.59

66.48

27.06

2.87

To identify the factors accounting for the variation in participants’ pause locations, the percentages of their four types of pauses were correlated to their linguistic knowledge and text quality scores. Table 2 shows the results of these correlational analyses. The table shows that all the correlations of the four pausing types are non-significant with the exception of those of inter-sentential pausing. The non-significant correlations of pre-writing and post-writing pausing are lower than those of intrasentential pausing. It can be noted that the afterwriting pausing has the least mean correlations of the four types. The non-significant negative correlations of pre-writing and post-writing pausing are attributed to the greater number of silent pauses made by the participants with lower levels of linguistic knowledge and writing performance in the pre-writing and post-writing time. It may be difficult to interpret these low and non-significant correlations of both types of pausing because they may be mainly due to the participants’ inability to verbalize their thoughts continuously, on the one hand, and to their low number on the other hand.

Both pre-writing pausing and intra-sentential pausing types have negative correlational patterns but the correlations of the former are weaker with the linguistic measures and stronger with the writing quality profile than those of the latter. On the other hand, inter-sentential pausing has a positive correlational pattern with all the measures and correlates significantly with all the measures except essay mechanics score. It may be concluded that the participants paused within the sentences more for planning text or retrieving lexical and syntactic knowledge than for generating ideas or text or reviewing text, and vice versa. While the correlations of intra-sentential pausing, some of which are near the borderline of significance, suggest that the participants with lower writing competence and linguistic knowledge levels paused silently within the sentences more than the ones with higher writing competence and linguistic knowledge levels, those of inter-sentential pausing indicate the opposite case. This implies that writers with lower levels of competence and linguistic knowledge pause more within the sentences than between them because they may be preoccupied

Table 2: Correlations of silent pausing with the linguistic knowledge and writing quality scores

Content

Organization

Vocabulary

Language use

Mechanics

Pre-writing pausing

-.181

-.136

-.253

-.279

-.293

-.320

-.257

-.224

-.301

Intra-sentential pausing

-.278

-.343

-.241

-.126

-.214

-.211

-.197

-.112

-.194

.564**

.529**

.414*

.534**

.546**

.486**

.360

.519**

-.147

-.134

-.165

-.161

-.132

-.175

-.196

-.175

OPT Grammar Test

RVLT

Total score

Writing quality profile

PVLT

Linguistic tests

Inter-sentential .504** pausing After-writing pausing

-.076

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with textual planning or retrieving lexicon and syntax, and that writers with higher levels of competence and linguistic knowledge pause between sentences more than within them perhaps for planning what to say next or reviewing their text. In others words, the former type of writers have more linguistic problems than ideational ones in their composing, while the latter type of writers have more ideational problems than linguistic ones in their composing. The interview protocols support such a conclusion. For example, the following interview excerpts for five participants with higher writing competence and linguistic knowledge clearly show they were mainly concerned with finding ideas while composing: Student A: I think my grammar is good so I think the main problem is in the thoughts and how to simplify them. For examples repeated sentences and repeated thoughts, I have repeated more than one idea… I can say lack of ideas. Student B: I may find some difficulty in finding ideas, regarding language problems I try to make use of my language ability as much as I can…As for why I stopped, this was to retrieve ideas. Student C: The ideas only as well as some vocabulary and spelling difficulties. I stopped mainly for the ideas and very few grammar difficulties. Student D: The difficulties I encountered are the same as the ones, I think, my peers have. They include finding the appropriate ideas and vocabulary. Student E: Yes, I stopped for revision and for thinking about the ideas. I think I don’t find difficulty in vocabulary but the difficulty I have is in organizing the ideas. My spelling and grammar are also OK. By contrast, the following interview excerpts for five participants with lower levels of writing competence and linguistic knowledge indicate that their main problem was how to translate their ideas into text. Student F: All what I had to stop to think about was the language. For example I can ask myself will I say the sentence in the past perfect or the

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present perfect, this makes me confused… grammar is the main problem … but I can overcome vocabulary problems by finding other alternatives. Student G: There are lots of thing I couldn’t write due to grammatical and vocabulary problems, I mean retrieval problems. Student H: I stopped for finding a word I don't know or don't know its spelling. Student I: Yes, one of the main problems I have is how to write the sentence in the target tense… my spelling is also a problem… the test situation itself makes me unsure of my spelling… Regarding the ideas, I didn't have problems, but the difficulty was how to translate them into English. … I stopped mainly to find appropriate vocabulary and to remember the spelling of the words. Student J: My main problem is the spelling. For example in the essay I'm not sure of the spelling of words like 'slave' and 'genius'. …I think my grammar is good but sometimes I have difficulties with the tenses. As for the vocabulary problems, I overcome them by looking for other equivalents. The above interview excerpts suggest that the participants’ linguistic knowledge was the most important determinant in their intra-sentential and inter-sentential pausing, and that these linguistic knowledge levels, in turn, influenced their text quality. Not only did the participants’ linguistic knowledge exert influence on their pausing and text quality but also on their writing selfconfidence. The following two interview excerpts may help illustrate this: Student K: I don’t have confidence in my writing because I know in advance that who reads my writing will comment on my grammar or vocabulary. Student F: When I know that we'll study essay writing in a specific term, I realize that this will be the most difficult subject in that term. I can say this is because of lack of self-confidence, writing essay needs self-confidence because of the language.

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The results reported here are consistent with those of Sasaki (2000) whose expert writers paused less while writing than the novice ones. The results also seem to be congruent with those of Spelman Miller (2000) who attributed her ESL writers’ pausing at the clause completion points to their planning pressures. The interview excerpts supplementing the think-aloud data in the present study support the conclusion that writers with lower levels of linguistic knowledge tend to pause more within the sentences than between them to solve the language problems they encounter. The present study differs from those of Ballard (1994) and Spelman Miller (2000) in not analyzing the length of writers’ pauses. Measuring writers’ pauses length was not considered in this study because it assessed the participants’ composing processes through using the think-aloud protocols which can inform us about their internal processes, while Ballard and Spelman Miller depended on keystroke logging as the only data source about their participants’ composing processes.

Conclusion The study reported here indicates the importance of linguistic knowledge in EFL writers’ performance. Due to their preoccupation with planning and retrieving what to write in the next part of the sentence, the participants with lower levels of linguistic knowledge paused more within sentences and less between sentences than the ones with higher levels of linguistic knowledge. These grammar and vocabulary problems encountered by the participants with lower levels of linguistic knowledge seem also to have influenced their text quality negatively and this influence caused their text quality scores to have similar correlations to those of linguistic knowledge with pausing types. One possible implication of the results of this study is that writing teachers need to consider the linguistic knowledge levels of their EFL/ESL students in their classes and that the EFL/ESL writing instruction should vary depending on students’ linguistic knowledge or language proficiency. Given that the present study may be the first attempt to explore writers’ pausing in this target context, we need more research on the temporal analyses of Arab EFL/ESL writers. Future researchers could replicate the same study in other

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Arab contexts using introspective and retrospective data sources. In addition, making use of computerbased tasks is needed in future EFL/ESL composing process studies, given that many of the current students or writers do not often use paper and pencil when composing their texts. Real-time computer-aided writing is a rich area for examining and analyzing the temporal aspects of the writing process because the logged data provides an accurate account of the timing of each key press, cursor movement and pause. A detailed review of the realtime computer-aided composing studies, their findings and the taxonomies they used for analyzing the composing process temporal aspects is given by Abdel Latif (2008).

Acknowledgements This article is based on a part of my PhD research. I would like to acknowledge the support given to my research by the International Research Foundation for English Language Education (TIRF), and thank its Board of Trustees for granting me the 2008 Sheikh Nahayan Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship Award. My special and grateful thanks go to Sheikh Nahayan, UAE Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, for his generous funding of the award. I would like also to thank the Institute of Educational Studies, Cairo University, for sponsoring my research.

References Abdel Latif, M. M. (2008). A state-of-the-art review of the real-time computer-aided research of the writing process. International Journal of English Studies, 8(1), 29-51. Allan, D. (1992). Oxford Placement Test 2 (the Grammar Test). Oxford: Oxford University Press. Ballard, B. P. (1994). Writing and Pausing at the Computer: A Case Study of an Experienced Writer. Dissertation Abstracts International, 55:4, 948. Bosher, S. (1998). The composing processes of three Southeast Asian writers at the post-secondary level: An exploratory study. Journal of Second Language Writing, 7(2), 205-241. Butler, D. A. (1981). A descriptive analysis of the relationships between writing apprehension and the composing processes of selected secondary students. DAI-A, 41(9), 3854. TESOL Arabia Perspectives

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Chenoweth, N. A. & Hayes, J. R. (2001). Fluency in Writing: Generating Texts in L1 and L2. Written Communication, 18(1), 80-98. Emig, J. (1971). The Composing Process of Twelfth Graders. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English. Jacobs, H. L., Zinkgraf, S. A., Wormuth, D. R., Hartfiel,. V. F. & Hughey, J. B. (1981). Testing ESL composition: A practical approach. Rowley, Mass.: Newbury House. Laufer, P. & Nation. B. (1999). A vocabulary-size test of controlled productive ability. Language Testing, 16(1), 33–5. Matsuno, K., Sakaue, T., Morita, M., Murao, R. & Sugiura, M. (2007). Processing loads and fluency in writing: Comparison of the production fluency between native speakers and non-native speakers in terms of the "Cost Criteria." The sixth Symposium on Second Language, Nagoya Gakuin University, Nagoya, Japan. Perl, S. (1979). The composing processes of unskilled college writers. Research in the Teaching of English, 13(4), 317-36. Ransdell, S. E. & Levy, C. M. (1994). Writing as process and product: The impact of tool, genre, audience, knowledge, and writer expertise. Computers in Human Behavior, 10(4), 511-527.

Roca de Larios, J., Manchón, R. M., & Murphy, L. (2008). The foreign language writer’s strategic behaviour in the allocation of time to writing processes. Journal of Second Language Writing, 17(1), 3047. Sasaki, M. (2000). Toward an empirical model of EFL writing processes: An exploratory study. Journal of Second Language Writing, 9(3), 259-91. Schmitt, N., Schmitt, D. & Clapham, C. (2001). Developing and exploring the behaviour of two new versions of the vocabulary levels test. Language Testing, 18(1), 55–88. Spelman Miller, K. (2000). Academic writers online: Investigating pausing in the production of text. Language Teaching Research, 4(2), 123-148. Van Waes, L. & Schellens, P.J. (2003). Writing Profiles: The effect of the writing mode on pausing and revision patterns of experienced writers. Journal of Pragmatics, 35(6), 829-853. Van Waes, L. (1991). De computer en het schrijfproces. De invloed van de tekstverwerker op het pauze-en revisiegedrag van schrijvers (The computer and the writing process. The influence of the word processor on the pausing and revision behavior of writers). DAI-C, 53(4), 601.

TESOL Arabia Chapters and Events For more information about TESOL Arabia Chapters and their events, please visit

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The Role of the Transformational Leader for Quality ELT Staff Development in Organizational Learning

Allison Litz UAE University, Al Ain, UAE

David Litz UAE University, Al Ain, UAE

allielitz@yahoo.com

davidralitz@yahoo.com

K-12 English language teaching (ELT) is currently undergoing profound change and reform in Middle Eastern countries such as the United Arab Emirates (e.g. Al Ghad Schools Project, Abu Dhabi Education Council Model Schools Initiative, etc.). It is the view of these authors that this change should not be haphazard, but should instead be managed, structured and focused on the design of true learning organizations which ultimately support improved student outcomes. This concept is generally referred to as: “organizational learning” (OL). While true organizational learning is dependent on several variables, one of its most crucial characteristics is “transformational leadership”. Of particular importance is the role that this school leadership plays in the promotion and advancement of quality staff development programs. This paper will describe and discuss the significance of this interdependent administrative relationship and provide a model for future K-12 ELT management practices with respect to faculty/staff professional development in the Middle East.

Introduction Organizational learning has become a dominant trend in educational practice and literature over the past two decades. Most of its tenets and philosophical underpinnings have been derived from Systems Theory and directly applied from the business context to educational systems. In 1997, Arie de Gues, one of the founders of organizational learning, wrote a book called The Living Company that looked at organizational structures in global corporations (Senge, Scharmer, Jaworski, & Flowers, 2006). Organizational learning became a dominant theory in the field of education by the year 2004 (Mulford, Silins & Leithwood, 2004). Two prominent aspects of organizational learning are: “the transformational leader” and “quality staff development”. Both the school leader and his or her efforts have an impact on school performance. Indeed, with regard to organizational learning in education, there is a causal relationship between school leadership (including subsequent leadership

practices) and student outcomes: “school improvement is an organizational phenomenon and therefore the principal, as leader, is the key for better or for worse” (Fullan, 2001, p.146; Mulford, Silins & Leithwood, 2004). Quality staff development encompasses a multitude of organizational learning processes and effective educational leaders are often successful at integrating these processes into their schools. Schools that demonstrate transformational leadership and quality staff development are true collaborative learning organizations that focus on continuous improvement (Collinson, Cook & Conley, 2006; Wang & Ahmed, 2003). As such, it is important to determine and effectively describe the role and responsibilities of the transformational leader in regards to quality staff development within organizational learning organizations.

Organizational Learning Prior to a discussion of the role and responsibilities of the transformational leader and relationship of staff development to organizational learning, a

* “Quality Staff Development” is a term that the authors have created to describe staff development that is applicable, relevant and effective. Volume 16

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definition and some of the key concepts of organizational learning will be provided. It is difficult to ascertain a precise definition of organizational learning in the literature as it is such a broad concept. Nevertheless, organizational learning in education essentially refers to fundamental change and/or reform within educational systems and it focuses on the continuous improvement and produced outcomes of those systems through individual and collective learning (Leithwood, Leonard & Sharratt, 1998; Mulford et al., 2004; Wang & Ahmed, 2003). Due to the fact that exact definitions of organizational learning are challenging to discern, Collinson, Cook, and Conley (2006) instead identify five underlying principles of organizational learning: 1.Organizational learning involves learning at the individual, group, and organizational level; 2.Organizational learning involves inquiry (and often questions longstanding institutionalized beliefs); 3.Organizational learning depends on shared understandings between members; 4.Organizational learning includes behavioural and cognitive change; and 5.Organizational learning entails implementing new knowledge and practices into organizational routines.

As the impact of organizational learning in ELT programs at various educational institutions in the Middle East becomes apparent, so will the avenues that lead to creating successful organizational learning in such institutions. Collinson et al. (2006) outline six interrelated factors that promote organizational learning in schools:

Organizational learning is considered an important element for current educational systems because of its demonstrated efficacy. Several researchers have determined that a positive correlation exists between organizational learning and student learning (Collinson et al., 2006; Fullan, 2001; Leithwood et al., 1998; Mulford et al., 2004), while others note that student outcomes are multi-faceted measures and thus suggest that relevant studies should include students’ behavioral achievements and skills’ acquisition as well as academic achievements (Kohn, 1993; Mulford et al, 2004; Wagner, 1993). In addition, organizational learning fosters a proactive response to externally imposed demands, as opposed to a reactive one. A proactive stance occurs when schools independently generate internal changes that maintain congruence with external reform policies and guidelines. In general, organizational learning creates an atmosphere for meaningful change, continuous renewal, and genuine improvement from within the learning organizations themselves.

Senge, Scharmer, Jaworski, and Flowers (2006), discuss the fact that we are in a new era of globalization, and as such, recommend that new forms of leadership are needed. Perhaps transformational models of organizational learning and leadership are exactly the sort required for educational systems to prosper in the modern global world: “As models of leadership shift from organizational hierarchies with leaders at the top to more distributed, shared networks, a lot changes” (Senge et al. 2006, p. 186) and “a shared leadership model…truly advantages the school community” (Reese, 2004; p.18). Hierarchal models of leadership actually disempower organizational members and create an expectation amongst staff that the leader alone should solve the organization’s problems (Laiken, 2001). Alternatively, transformational leaders practise distributed leadership and extensive research shows that transformational school leaders have a positive impact on organizational learning – directly by incorporating organizational learning processes and indirectly by providing conditions for quality staff development. Moreover, the resultant

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Prioritizing learning for all members Facilitating the dissemination (sharing) of knowledge, skills, and insights Attending to human relationships Fostering inquiry Enhancing democratic governance; and Providing for members’ self-fulfillment. (p. 110)

Collinson et al. (2006) do not directly imply that the above initiatives are to be facilitated and supervised by the school leader (or principal). It seems clear that most (if not all) of these items would fall under a principal’s “job description” umbrella. However, these innovative initiatives undoubtedly differ greatly from principals’ job duties in the past. It is important, therefore, to examine the new role and responsibilities of today’s educational leader in learning organizations.

The Transformational Leader

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changes in student outcomes in schools where leaders are transformational through their adoption of organizational learning processes are uniformly for the better (Lam, Y.L., 2002; Leithwood et al., 1998; Mulford et al. 2004). Thus, it is important to understand the main tenets of transformational leadership. Lam (2002) suggests that “transformational leadership encompasses items such as: articulating vision, fostering group goals, supporting individuals, engaging in reflective/critical thinking, providing models, entertaining high expectation, developing shared norms, and encouraging collective decision making” (p. 443). In addition, Mulford et al. (2004) outline six similar practices of the transformational leader: Individual Support (supporting and appreciating staff efforts), Culture (fostering mutual respect and collaboration amongst staff), Structure (promoting group participation, sharing decisionmaking and distributing leadership), Vision and Goals (setting common goals and joint purpose), Performance Expectation (setting high standards for staff and students), and Intellectual Stimulation (encouraging reflection and continuous learning). Leithwood et al. (1998) identify these same aspects of transformational leadership, but also mention that transformational leaders provide appropriate “models” for their staff to follow (i.e. Transformational leaders demonstrate behaviours that are consistent with their espoused values and goals). According to these same authors, school structure and culture are seen as internal school variables that transformational leaders can affect indirectly to enhance organizational learning. Lam (2002) describes indicators of positive culture and structure in schools. With regard to school structure, a transformational leader schedules frequent problemsolving sessions, regular professional development sessions, and common preparation periods as well as facilitates staff collaboration, flexible time-tabling, team teaching, cross-departmental conferencing, and integrated curriculum teams. Also, a transformational leader tries to establish a school culture that is mutually supportive and respectful, encourages risk-taking, provides feedback, celebrates success, and focuses on the needs of students’ achievement.

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Another important aspect of organizational learning, which pertains to leadership, is Total Quality Management (TQM): “TQM and learning organizations are mutually dependent” (Wang & Ahmed, 2003, p.12). TQM is a business operational model for creating learning organizations and it focuses on continuous improvement or capacity building by improving organizational processes through training employees, assessing customer needs and satisfaction, analyzing resource allocation, and increasing staff participation (Wang & Ahmed, 2003). In addition, TQM is data-driven and “great importance is placed on the use of statistical control diagrams and other…quantitative information about performance” (Kohn, 1993, p. 60). In association with TQM and the advancement of organizational learning in education, comes a data-rich environment aimed at measuring standards-based instruction and academic achievement (Lachat, Williams, & Smith, 2006). Accordingly, it can be hypothesized that the transformational leader in a learning organization in the Middle East (or anywhere else for that matter) must be prepared to manage this trend in education. Some current research provides information for school leaders on how to accomplish this seemingly insurmountable task. Lachat et al. (2006) stress the importance of “data literacy” (i.e. one’s ability to use data to determine areas of success and improve instruction) amongst school leaders and staff members. These authors have identified three ways to develop data literacy in schools by: organizing data around essential questions (to focus on what is important and what to look for), using data software technology (to conduct purposeful data disaggregation), and using data teams and a data coach (to allow staff to develop data analysis skills). In addition, ParkerBoudett, City and Murnane (2006) have developed an eight-step model for educators to become more skillful at using data. In the first phase of their model, schools “prepare” by organizing themselves for collaborative work and by building assessment literacy. In the second “inquiry” phase, staff members create a data overview, dig into student data, and examine instruction. In the final phase, “act”, staff members develop an action plan, plan to assess progress, and then act and assess.

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Therefore, based on the literature about transformational leadership it can be inferred that school leaders who are truly dedicated to being transformational by creating an actual learning organization and improving their students’ outcomes should adopt the following: practice transformational leadership strategies, adopt and implement organizational learning processes in their schools, and understand how to interpret accurately and effectively using data to make data-based decisions.

Quality Staff Development Since staff development is essentially the professional learning of organizational members, QST obviously plays a central role in organizational learning. Just as the connection between the transformational leader and student outcomes in organizational learning is multi-dimensional, the relationship between staff development and student learning has many facets. However, the predominant avenue whereby students benefit academically from such measures is via staff members who have internalized worthwhile professional learning (Guskey & Sparks, 1991; Guskey & Sparks, 1996; Guskey & Sparks, 2002). Staff development is complex and involves all aspects of the learning process from preparing activities, practising and coaching, to follow-up and support activities (Guskey and Sparks, 1991). As delineated by Guskey and Spark’s (2002) model, there are three aspects of staff development that impact its effectiveness: Content (i.e. its subject matter), Process (i.e. the quality of its delivery), and Context (i.e. the organizational environment). Thus, staff development is considered valuable for staff members if it is well-presented, applicable and relevant (and so herein termed “quality staff development”). Conversely, if these conditions are not met, the staff development process is costly for the organization as well as its leaders and staff in terms of time and resources and its potential benefits are wasted. More importantly, poor staff development programs will fail schools and educational initiatives due to their minimal impact on improving student outcomes. While Guskey and Sparks’ later work looks at the relationship between the quality of staff development (which considers content characteristics, context characteristics and process

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variables) and improved student learning, Joyce and Showers (2002), specifically focus on the pedagogical process of staff development and outline four conditions that are necessary to produce real improvements in student achievement. Essentially, for a staff development program to be beneficial, the program content must be delivered in a cooperative environment amongst a community of professionals, reflect the curriculum and modern instructional methods, be supported by the educational organization and it members, as well as be monitored to ensure the sound implementation of the pedagogy that was developed (Joyce). Consequently, transformational leaders should routinely assess the quality and processes of staff development initiatives. Other authors, such as Lieberman and Wilkins (2006) assert that there are various staff development pathways and contest that prior to conducting staff development a needs assessment must be conducted by staff leaders to determine each particular learning organization’s professional learning needs. According to their model, there are three separate areas of staff development and each is associated with distinct activities: Schoolwide Professional Development (which involves training activities such as educational technology seminars); Grade/Level, Curriculum, or Team Professional Development (which involves inquiry activities such as mentoring and observation); and Individual Professional Development (which involves individually guided activities such as coursework and action research). The above authors have thoroughly researched the various facets and processes of professional learning and provide evidence for the positive correlation between quality staff development and improved student outcomes. Undoubtedly, quality staff development programs are a worthwhile component in any educational learning organization. Unfortunately, providing conditions that support quality professional development requires sufficient resources (i.e. time and money). These two resources are often in short supply. Government educational leaders must continue to devise budgets that allocate adequate monetary resources to schools and policy makers and ensure that teachers have enough time during their work day to convene regularly. In

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addition, school leaders require supervision to ensure that quality staff development programs operate regularly within their schools. (DarlingHammond, 2005; Wagner, 1993).

Conclusion

Mentoring is perhaps the most cost-effective and collaborative organizational learning process that enhances staff development and organizational learning. Hargreaves and Fullan (2000) argue, however, that for mentoring to be successful in learning organizations within the new millennium, it must move: N From being performed in pairs to becoming an integral part of professional cultures in schools; N From focusing only on classroom work with students to developing the ability to form strong relationships with colleagues and parents as well; N From hierarchical dispensations of wisdom to shared inquiries into practice; and N From being an isolated innovation to becoming an integrated part of broader improvement efforts to re-culture our schools and school systems. (p.55) To Hargreaves and Fullan (2000), traditional mentoring is limited because it only values oneway observation, self-sustainability, and the experienced practitioner. Alternatively, their vision of mentoring in the new millennium emphasizes team work, pedagogic partnerships, coaching, continuous learning, shared decision-making, transformation, reflection, and on-going improvement. Since these concepts are integral to organizational learning and mentoring is a relatively simple and inexpensive form of staff development to implement, modern mentoring models should be encouraged and supported within learning organizations. Therefore, with regard to staff development, it is the responsibility of the Middle Eastern transformational school leader to: encourage a school culture that values continuous learning, establish collaborative school structures, regularly assess the quality of staff development programs, participate in on-going professional learning, conduct staff development needs’ analyses, and support modern mentoring practices.

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While organizational learning is a relatively new concept in educational theory and practice, its positive impact on student outcomes has been observed and documented in a variety of diverse educational contexts. Key components necessary to ensure successful organizational learning in schools, and thereby produce valuable K-12 learning organizations and ELT programs throughout the Middle East, are the transformational leader and quality staff development. Since organizational learning has been shown to have a significant impact on student outcomes, it is the responsibility of educational leaders’ to maximize their effectiveness by becoming transformational leaders and ensuring that quality staff development is made a priority in their respective schools. There is no question that K-12 ELT teaching is experiencing profound change in many countries throughout the Middle East. In order to foster fundamental change in educational systems, higher administrative bodies in countries such as the UAE, Qatar etc. should consider the following: develop reform policies that are based on organizational learning principles, mandate current professional development for academic administrators, integrate quality staff development into the curricula and include methodologies and strategies for implementing quality staff development in schools, and finally, create performance assessment tools to monitor school leaders’/principals’ implementation of quality staff development strategies and practices in their schools. The institutionalization of organizational learning in schools may result in educational systems which produce a greater number of suitably knowledgeable, properly skilled, wellsocialized individuals who are adequately prepared to function as productive members of modern society across all socio-economic levels.

Recommendations For Future Research While the voluminous literature on staff development presents varied components of what constitutes meaningful staff professional development practices, it is becoming increasingly essential that both quantitative and qualitative

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Lachat, M., Williams, M., & Smith, S. (2006). Making sense of all your data. Principal Leadership (High School Ed.), 7(2), 16-21.

research be conducted in the Middle East. This research could focus on the direct relationship between the transformational leader and quality staff development programs as well as the elements of the professional development experience (i.e. mentoring) that best contribute to successful organizational learning and enhanced student educational outcomes in a regional context.

Laiken, M. (2001). Models of organizational learning: Paradoxes and best practices in the post industrial workplace. Paper presented at the Organization Development World Conference, July 2001, Vienna. Educational Resources Information Center.

References

Lam, Y.L. (2002). Defining the effect of transformational leadership on organizational learning: A cross-cultural comparison. School Leadership and Management, 22(4), 439-452.

Collinson, V., Cook, T., & Conley, S. (2006). Organizational learning in schools and school systems: Improving learning, teaching, and leading. Theory into Practice, 45(2), 107-116.

Lieberman, J. & Wilkins, E. (2006). The professional development pathways model: From policy to practice. Kappa Delta Pi Record, 42(3), 124-127.

Darling-Hammond, L. (2005). Teaching as a profession: Lessons in teacher preparation and professional development. Phi Delta Kappan, 87(3), 237-240.

Leithwood, K., Leonard, L., & Sharratt, L. (1998). Conditions fostering organizational learning in schools. Educational Administration Quarterly, 34(2), 243-276.

Fullan, M. (2001). The new meaning of educational change. (3rd ed.). Toronto: Teachers College Press & Irwin Publishing.

Mulford. W., Silins, H. & Leithwood, K, (2004). Educational leadership for organizational learning and improved student outcomes. Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Guskey, T. & Sparks, D. (1991). What to consider when evaluating staff development. Educational Leadership, 49(3), 73-76.

Murphy, J. (2007). Learning-Centered Leadership. Live lecture conducted at the University of Calgary, July 10, 2007.

Guskey, T. & Sparks, D. (1996). Exploring the relationship between staff development and improvements in student learning. Journal of Staff Development, 17, 34-8. Guskey, T. & Sparks, D. (2002). Linking professional development to improvements in student learning. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of American Educational Research Association, April 2002, New Orleans. Educational Resources Information Center. Hargreaves, A & Fullan, M. (2000). Mentoring in the new millennium. Theory into Practice, 39(1), 50-56.

Wagner, T. (1993). Systemic Change: Rethinking the purpose of school. Educational Leadership, 1(1), 2428.

Kohn, A. (1993). Turning learning into a business: Concerns about total quality. Educational Leadership, 51(1), 58-61.

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Reese, S. (2004). Effective school leadership. Techniques: Connecting Education and Careers, 79(6), 18-21. Senge, P., Scharmer, D., Jaworski, J & Flowers, B. (2006). Presence: An exploration of profound change in people, organizations, and society. New York: Currency.

Joyce, B. & Showers, B. (2002). Student achievement through staff development. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

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Parker-Boudett, K., City, E., & Murnane, R. (2006). The â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;data wiseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; improvement process: Eight steps for using test data to improve teaching and learning. Principal Leadership (Middle School Ed.), 7(2), 53-56.

Wang, C. & Ahmed, P. (2003). Organizational learning: A critical review. The Learning Organization, 10(1), 8-17.

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Reflections in the Gulf Nick Poultney Abu Dhabi Men's College United Arab Emirates A recent article in the UAE tabloid, 7Days, Emirati Students Tell of Feeling Alienated in their Own Land, interested me as it seems to throw some light on a number of questions which I have been asking for some time: could our students achieve more, could they make faster progress?

question our methodology and materials. The label usually applied to much of our methodology is the communicative method, which emphasises language in use, and is characterised by pair work, group work and role play. Another label which is applied to current methods is eclectic: i.e. take the best features of several methods and apply them. (See Prabhu, 1990, on the difficulty of deciding which are the best features). Eclectic methodology is seen in contemporary course books which include communicative activities as well as overt grammar and translation.

In the article a number of girls, who are students at Zayed University, explain that much of what they see and hear going on around them clashes with their culture and values, "What we are growing increasingly concerned about is the attack that is taking place in our culture" (7Days, 2005). This serves as a stark reminder that there are cultural issues that may be relevant when we come to examine the teaching and learning process, and in the present article I will suggest that it is cultural factors, closely linked to our teaching methodology and materials, which may be the root of some problems in the classroom. In examining this topic, we must, of course, be very careful not to be guilty of stereotyping. Gayle Nelson (2006) in her recent talk at TESOL Arabia reminded us that teachers need to: N N N N

avoid presuming, “othering,” or assigning a cultural identity to students stay open to possibilities ask, listen, observe discover who students are as individuals

This caution leads me to say that a detailed examination of local cultural factors, which may affect the learning process, would not be appropriate here, but we can all bring to mind the kind of thing I have in mind. Unsuitable materials and the students’ previous educational experiences are two examples. Consideration of cultural factors should lead us to

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It is suggested that many of the activities associated with communicative methodology are unsuitable in a number of ways. They may conflict with the students’ expectations, thus inhibiting the learning process, or cause resistance by being culturally or politically offensive. On the other hand, the activities may simply be too short and too varied to hold the students’ attention. Shamim (1996), writing about her experiences in Pakistan, contends that modern methods mean the teacher no longer adopts a role which is consistent with the students' expectations of the classroom situation. The students perceive the teacher as having broken the student-teacher contract and this leads to a breakdown in learning. A recent survey conducted at Zayed University in the UAE describes several examples of difficulties experienced by new faculty in teaching, and which are attributed to cultural factors (Sonleitner & Khelifa, 2005). Both studies speak of students ignoring the teacher. So what can be done about it? It seems that much can be learnt from Kumarvadivelu and his “Post Method Pedagogy,” where he advocates a pedagogy of particularity, practicality, and possibility, which is very relevant to the problems outlined above (Kumarvadivelu, 2001).

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A methodology of particularity is context-sensitive and based on an understanding of the local linguistic, socio-cultural and political situation. Kumarvadivelu goes so far as to say that pedagogies that ignore these factors can be disturbing or even threatening. Our students have certain expectations of the classroom, based on their previous experience at schools, where very traditional methods may have been the norm, and peer group influence may inhibit change. Students may not be used to pair work or group work, for example. A pedagogy of practicality involves reflective teaching, and action research. It sees the teacher as autonomous, harnessing what Hargreaves (as cited in Kumaravadivelu, 2001) refers to as “the teacher’s powerful sense of what works and what does not” (Hargreaves, 1994). A pedagogy of possibility means we must be aware of political factors, which may influence classroom events. Kumaravadivelu (2003) cites examples involving Tamil, South African and Palestinian students to illustrate his point.

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Hargreaves, A. (1994). Changing teachers, changing times. New York: Teachers College Press. Holliday, A. (1994). Appropriate methodology and social context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Holliday A., Hyde, M. & Kullman, J. (2004). International communication. London: Routledge.

Nelson, G. (2006, March). Language, power and identity. Paper presented at TESOL Arabia, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Prabhu, N.S. (1990). There is no best method: Why? TESOL Quarterly, 24(2), 161-176. Emirati students tell of feeling alienated in their own land. (2005, May 19). 7Days, p10.

These activities can reflect topics of local interest and be drawn from local sources such as newspapers and magazines. Speaking, incidentally, often flows naturally as part of these tasks. Nick Poultney began teaching EFL in Exeter, in U.K. in 1977, and read for an M.A. at Independent e-tasks, Bangor in North Wales. Since then he has if managed taught in several countries in the Middle efficiently, are also East, including nine years in Oman. He has been involved in projects in China, Ukraine invaluable, although and Libya. He is currently teaching at Abu the computer should Dhabi Men’s college, mainly on the Diploma be an aid and not a Programme. distractor. e-mail - dpoultney@hct.ac.ae

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Edge, J. (2003). Imperial troopers and servants of the lord: A vision of TESOL for the 21st century. TESOL Quarterly, 37(4), 701 – 709.

Kumaravadivelu, B. (2003). Problematizing cultural stereotypes in TESOL. TESOL Quarterly, 37(4), 709-718.

various kinds of grammar exercises, including transformation and gap-fill exercises dictation and spelling tests vocabulary building activities intensive reading and writing exercises reading aloud

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References

Kumaravadivelu, B. (2001). Toward a postmethod pedagogy. TESOL Quarterly, 35(4), 537- 560.

So, in short, the teacher must adapt to local realities and come to the conclusion that more traditional methods work better than so-called modern methods.They seem to hold the student’s attention more than speaking or a variety of short activities. Activities might include: N

Giving the students what they want and perceive as real learning may not always accord with our ideas of good methodology, but will be more productive than an activity that goes badly.

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Shamim F. (1996). Learner resistance to innovation in classroom methodology. In H. Coleman (Ed.), Society and the language classroom (pp.105-121). Cambridge University Press. Sonleitner, N. & Khelifa K. (2005). Westerneducated faculty challenges in a Gulf classroom. Retrieved on November 20, 2008, from http://www.zu.ac.ae/lthe/2ACorrelationAnalysisofLanguageSkillsandCognitiv eSkillsinAccountingfinal_000.swf?POPUP_ENABLED=true.

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The Two Cultures Debate Continues – A Reply to Graeme Tennent In his article The Defence of Literature… (Perspectives 15/2) Graeme Tennent states that “throughout the centuries from Plato onwards, there have been periodic assaults on the literary and the poetic”, citing “a wonderfully creative national teacher who bemoaned the fact that she could not get funds for her theatrical ventures, saying that, had it been IT, they would have thrown money at her.” He concludes that, “As educators, we should counter the sickening banality of the contemporary cultural experience.” I should now like to examine this from another point of view, for I feel that Tennent’s article is at its best when it is kicking down open doors, and that in one respect, it is openly self-contradictory. “We live in the shared globalised world of the Oprah-fication of emotion, the Doctor Phil-istinism of human values and endless ‘comedies’ based on the infantilism of humankind. Is this the context for the English language and its acquisition? Well, it may be my language but it is certainly not my culture.” The gentleman doth protest too much, methinks. In that paragraph, Tennant’s cultural analogies (Oprah; Doctor Phil) and his wordplay (Doctor Phil-istinism) reveal a man who is completely at home with the type of TV programme that he so emphatically rejects. He also assumes that his audience is equally at home with the phenomena that he attacks. We are so much part of the “shared globalised world” that there is no need for him to explain who his characters are, nor to explain what is “wrong” with the product. Compare this with two items taken from TES website today (10/6/2008). The first asks whether anyone has fallen foul of Radio 1’s “Confuse a Teacher” feature, while the second states “Boris Johnson thinks classics and boxing in schools will curb knife crime, what do you think?”

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Neil McBeath Sultan Qaboos University Sultanate of Oman

In both these instances, readers who lack awareness of (very) contemporary British culture will be lost. The “Confuse a Teacher” feature is a suggestion that students should write a particular but totally irrelevant word in the middle of their homework, to see if the teacher spots it. The second item misreports the new Mayor of London. He has actually suggested that encouraging enrolment in the hundreds of amateur boxing clubs that already exist in London might at least give structure to male teenage violence. He has also questioned the idea that appreciation of the classics is automatically linked to financial status. And this brings me to the question of two cultures. Graeme Tennent’s article offers the casual assumption that there are different cultures – generally a high, and exclusive culture, as opposed to a low, demotic, version. Raymond Williams (1958; 1974) effectively demolished that suggestion by pointing out that “high” and “popular” culture have always co-existed, and that they were mutually dependent on each other – “For every cathedral, a pit of bones; for every work of art, the mass labour that granted the artist the means to create” (Eagleton, 2008, p. 16). Williams also pointed out that, at least in Britain, television and the cinema – or more accurately “the pictures” – were frequently despised by those with vested interests in maintaining “high” culture, precisely because they were, effectively, classless. Tennent, moreover, appears to suggest that cultural values are unchanging; that what is of value is always of value, and that what is worthless is always worthless. Very few examples are required to disprove this. In what was probably the most famous rivalry in music, the short-term winner was Salieri, but he is now remembered primarily as Mozart’s rival, and not for his music. TESOL Arabia Perspectives

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Similarly, in his own lifetime, Van Gogh was unable to sell a single painting, despite having the advantage of a supportive brother who was an art dealer. By contrast, in 1913, Adolf Hitler’s art sales in Munich allowed him to live with the same degree of comfort as a skilled labourer (Spotts, 2003). Today, however, the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam is one of the city’s principal attractions, while Hitler’s art work has, at best, only a morbid appeal. Even in literature tastes change. Tennent refers admiringly to Zola, whose novel La Terre was successfully prosecuted for obscenity in England in 1888 (although publication in French was permitted – two cultures again!) Fifty years ago, D.H. Lawrence was regarded as a worthy heir of Leavis’(1963) “Great Tradition” of English novelists (Williams, 1970). This was partly a result of Lady Chatterley’s Lover having been found NOT to be obscene, with the result that reading Lawrence became a respectable, yet liberating, experience; an intellectually sanctioned exploration of Sidney’s “pestilent desires” and “sinful fancies.” Today, partly as a result of feminist critics like Millett (1970), Lawrence’s reputation has declined, and other writers, who were regarded as emerging figures, have failed to realise their early promise. When I was doing my first degree (BA Honours English – Southampton University 1968-72) admired contemporary writers were figures like Christopher Fry and Ivy ComptonBurnett. Neither, I think, would feature on a university reading list today. This is not, however, to accept that there are no fixed points, and steering by those stars is not necessarily “an indication of a failure to adapt”. Tennent quotes Edward Said “Young Arabs dutifully read Milton, Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Austen and Dickens as they might have studied Sanskrit or medieval heraldry… It was an anachronistic and odd confluence of rote-learning, uncritical teaching, and (to put it kindly) haphazard results”, but he fails to cite the context. If Said were describing a general undergraduate course, prescribed for all students, then there might be justification for his concern. If, by contrast, he is speaking about specialists, then what, exactly, is his point about Sanskrit and medieval heraldry? They are surely both legitimate subjects for study – unlike, for example, Marxist economics and/or creationism. For Arab, or any other, students who are majoring in English Literature, it is unthinkable that any of the authors mentioned could be omitted. There is nothing anachronistic in the selection. The earliest Volume 16

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21 writer listed is Shakespeare, and the IATEFL Literature SIG is currently holding an on-line fielded discussion about the best practice in the teaching of Shakespeare to EFL students. No one has suggested that it be discontinued. The worst that can be said about this list is that it is light on the eighteenth century and that Millett might find it rather weighted in favour of Dead White Males. The list also stands comparison with Tennent’s own selection – Mahfouz, Zola, Chaucer and Tolstoy which is eclectic, but possibly rather unfocussed. If, as Said suggests, Arab students are out of their depth with a fairly straightforward historical approach to English literature, how could they ever cope with writing from four radically different cultures, in four different time frames? Obviously, no concerned teachers will deliberately expose their students to meretricious writing, unless they wish to expose its weaknesses, and lead their students to the point where they can distinguish judicious choice of language and originality of theme for themselves. But this is no easy task, and in today’s information society it is frequently difficult for critics to distinguish the attractive from the truly long-lasting. Even in less febrile times, educated master writers could be led astray. Garnett (2004) reminds us of Anne Thackeray Ritchie, a remarkably successful Victorian novelist whose work was admired by, among others, George Eliot. Today, Anne Thackeray Ritchie is remembered only as Thackeray’s daughter, and as Virginia Woolf ’s father’s first sister-in-law.

References Eagleton, T. (2008, June 30). Culture is worth fighting for. The Guardian Weekly, p. 16. Garnett, Henrietta. Garnett, H. (2004). Anny: A life of Anne Thackeray Ritchie. London: Chatto & Windus. Leavis, F.R. (1963). The great tradition. Harmondsworth, GB: Pelican Books Millett, Kate. (1970). Sexual politics. New York: Doubleday. Spotts, Frederic. (2003). Hitler and the power of aesthetics. New York: Overlook Press. Williams, Raymond. (1958). Culture and society. London: Chatto & Windus. Williams, Raymond. (1970). The English novel from Dickens to Lawrence. London: Chatto & Windus. Williams, Raymond. (1974). Television, technology and cultural form. London: Collins.

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24/7 Mobile Video and the ELL Classroom D. Ireson Barclay As consumers, we have had 24/7 Internet access to our money, friends, and entertainment for the better part of the decade. With an Internet connection, you can pay your bills, transfer money, and manage your checking, savings, and credit card accounts from anywhere in the world. With Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) software, one has cheap audio and video access to family, friends, and business associates located worldwide. Should you hear a good song on the radio, Apple’s iPhone offers a nifty application that “listens” to the song and tells you the artist, album, and track . . . plus the ability to purchase it from iTunes. All of this is available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, anywhere you have an Internet connection. Such access allows us as consumers countless opportunities to consume; however, educational institutions continue to lag far behind the private sector in providing similar access and opportunities for our students to learn. Podcasting educationally oriented material is in the process of emerging from this concept of 24/7 anytime, anywhere access to information. Within this field, video podcasting possesses many promising qualities that may prove quite valuable to English Language Learners (ELL) in that it can target more than just auditory learners. The challenge with creating video podcasts is how to capture rich and pedagogically sound video that adds value to learning opportunities without becoming burdensome for teachers and students.

Podcasting in a Nutshell A podcast is a prerecorded audio or video program that users subscribe to using an aggregator. This aggregator is part of a media player which can play the downloaded audio or video file on a computer or mobile device. Apple’s iPod (mobile audio/video player) and iTunes (aggregator and media player) are good examples of this technology. The website HowStuffWorks.com offers a thorough explanation of the history of podcasting and Volume 16

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more detail on what differentiates podcasts from other forms of media delivery.

An ADMC student watches a podcast on his iPhone.

Video Podcasting to ELL Students Throughout the world and specifically in the Gulf, there are many institutions where all instruction is delivered in English to students who have varying levels of English proficiency. As a means of supporting learning, video podcasting has great potential, in that richly captured video lectures and classroom activities can provide these students with an opportunity to replay segments of the class for any variety of reasons, whether it be their difficulty with English, or as a result of “difficulty hearing the lecturer . . . as part of their exam revision . . . or to reinforce information for assessment” (Clark, Westcott, & Taylor, 2007). Another application of video podcasting allows educators to introduce, reinforce and review concepts and skills in a manner consistent with the way this generation of learners consumes information: in brief video segments (Lee, McLoughlin, & Chan, 2007). Properly crafted, these brief video segments can assist the ELL student’s learning by addressing both visual and auditory learning styles. In this application, the educator can develop content to address the needs of his/her students and thus create a powerful value-add to other learning resources. TESOL Arabia Perspectives

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A Closer Look Creating video podcasts of short learning segments and classroom activities requires a thoughtful approach to planning, filming, editing, and distribution. To be an effective learning resource, there is much more required than putting a video camera in the corner of the room or filming a mock lecture. Here’s a brief look at some of the key issues surrounding the planning and production of video podcasts.

Technical Issues Concerning the technical aspect of creating video podcasts, the obvious assumption is that the resource and personnel allocation to create such resources can range in both complexity and cost. This is not to say that an institution needs to spend a large amount of money to produce high quality videos, but that the expectations just need to be in line with what an institution is willing to spend and allocate. As such, it is absolutely necessary that the project begins with the establishment of clear objectives and the proper resources, both human and material being identified and acquired. Once filming begins, it is difficult to go back and do it again as the final product is only as good as the lowest quality component involved in the production process.

Classroom Capture Capturing a high quality video of classroom activities requires a significant amount of planning on how to effectively capture various lesson formats while not inhibiting the flow of the class or demanding a high degree of technical proficiency on the part of the faculty. Additionally, it is necessary that there is quick turnaround in publishing the video. Should a classroom video capture sit on an editor’s desk for several days, the video loses its relevance and is no longer a tool to assist the ELL student with his/her studies. There are several solutions available that address these functional requirements, ranging from software that can be configured to select the proper video or audio source to capture, to simple tools for the faculty D. Ireson Barclay is a former teacher, IT director, consultant and faculty member to control the associate at Johns Hopkins capture in real-time while University. He is currently the eLearning and Educational not interfering with the Technology Coordinator at Abu class. Lastly, software Dhabi Men’s College, managing projects involving the solutions exist for administration, IT staff, and faculty. automating the processing Volume 16

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and publishing of the classroom capture, so that within six hours students will have access to that day’s lesson via Internet download.

Short Learning Segments The non-technical planning phase for short learning segment video podcasts can be broken into several steps. First, one must identify the subjects, courses, concepts and skills that are best suited for 5-10 minute videos. Parallel to this is identifying and getting buy-in from the faculty who teach this material. Upon completion of this phase, it is best to establish some guidelines and possibly provide a model video for the faculty. There is a good chance that your participant has never been on camera before, and as such may have some trouble “wrapping their head around” exactly how to generate a high quality video of something they teach live to students every day. It can be a daunting task for someone to perform for the glass eye of the camera as opposed to dozens of student eyes to which they have become accustomed. Prior to filming, hold a preconference to discuss the filming details and determine the format in which the faculty member is most comfortable.

Mobility and Education in a 24/7 World The ability to bring high quality educational opportunities to students who have grown up in a world of 24/7 mobile access to information is educators’ next technical and pedagogical challenge. Video podcasting is one such application of Web 3.0 mobile computing that has the potential to provide anytime anywhere access to high quality, pedagogically sound content that could help ELL students succeed. Harnessing the power of this technology will also help in the quest of educators to produce lifelong learners, who can successfully utilize a variety of rich learning resources to better themselves and enhance their knowledge of the world. For further information, contact the author at dbarclay@hct.ac.ae. Clark, S., Westcott, M., & Taylor, L. (2007). Using short podcasts to reinforce lectures. UniServe Science Teaching and Learning Research Proceedings, 22-27. Lee, M. J., McLoughlin, C., & Chan, A. (2007). Talk the talk: Learner-generated podcasts as catalysts for knowledge creation. British Journal of Educational Technology, 501-521. TESOL Arabia Perspectives

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Macbeth, The ELT Graphic Novel Adapted by Brigit Viney Heinle Cengage Learning, 2009 ISBN 978-1-4240-2870-2 (with audio) ISBN 978-1-4240-2872-6 (without audio) 140 pages

Macbeth, The ELT Graphic Novel, mmm? Well, it was a play the last time that William and I looked, but times change, I suppose…. This edition of the “novel” is published by Heinle Cengage Learning, but the concept comes from a company called Classical Comics, a UK publisher who creates graphic novel adaptations of classical literature. These books are aimed at UK mainstream school readers who are having trouble coping with classic literature. At their website, not surprisingly, there is plenty of evidence of how these books have appealed to reluctant readers. The cover suggests that it falls somewhere between the Common European Framework Levels B1/B2. This puts the target audience between 4.0 and 5.5 on the IELTS test. On a personal note, graphic novels entered my life whilst spending a large part of last year’s summer holiday, wedged in the back of our rented car between a pair of warring eight and nine year old brothers on long journeys. In an attempt to distract them, I picked up the first kids’ graphic novel that I could find. Luckily, it was Stormbreaker: The Graphic Novel by Anthony Horowitz. I read it to them and it kept us busy for an hour. Success! So I got a couple of similar books. As the holiday progressed, a funny thing started to happen. Eight year old Luke, the world’s most reluctant reader, began to read the books on his own. I say “read” rather than just follow the pictures because I could see his lips moving as he tried to soundlessly form the words. The vocabulary was ungraded, wild and challenging in comparison to his school’s graded readers, which he hated. But, crucially, the illustrations were mature. Non-readers are not just a stress to the teacher, you know. Volume 16



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So why the anecdotal evidence that graphic novels encourage reluctant readers to independent reading for pleasure? Well, we all have students in our classrooms who never want to read anything we offer them, don’t we? So is Macbeth, The ELT Graphic Novel, the answer then? I suppose my main reservation is that it is not a very good graphic novel, ELT or otherwise. The illustrations are, to my mind, crude. The characters are laughably badly drawn and the backdrops look like sets for Bing Crosby’s A Connecticut Yankee at King Arthur’s Court. For me, a classic graphic novel needs to be enjoyed as much for its artwork as for its writing. What’s the test? Many pages will often contain no text, the plot and characters’ thoughts being conveyed solely by the pictures. Although Macbeth (I’m fed up with adding The Graphic Novel bit) has a pleasingly varied size of illustrations, all but two contain some text. It is as if the authors didn’t believe that people would look at the pictures simply for pleasure. If you compare this with the UK writer Alan Moore’s books, you’ll soon get the idea. For example, you could try his From Hell, V for Vendetta or The Watchmen novels to see what I mean. Or look at the Shakespeare's Macbeth: The Manga Edition which is a visual treat too, although the text is pretty tough for ESL learners. A far more satisfying attempt at ESL graphic novels were the Detective series by Chanceral International Publishers Limited featuring Agatha Christie titles which had beautifully stylized and evocative illustrations of twenties Europe. However, other readers appear TESOL Arabia Perspectives



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heavier) than your traditional paperback, so you’ll need to bulk up if you intend to carry a class set around. In fact, 30 copies of these will contain the equivalent of a small pulped forest; enough to give Macbeth continued nightmares of Burnham Wood being on the move again.

more than happy with this Macbeth’s artwork as illustrated by Amazon’s customer reviews. Although the artwork, to my eyes, is crude and disappointing, the accompanying audio CD, to my ears, is excellent. Obviously produced with a cast of professional actors, this is a powerful and dramatic addition to the book. For example, the text for Macbeth’s moving soliloquy upon hearing of the death of his wife is flat and lifeless, robbed of its linguistic majesty. However, the actor playing Macbeth manages to recover some echoes of Shakespeare’s true voice as the grieving husband ponders over the futility of a life and a love.

There is a general feeling amongst many ESL teachers in the Gulf that because of the oral tradition of storytelling in the region, our students are reluctant readers when it comes to picking up a book purely for pleasure. Possibly graphic novels and Manga literature could be a way forward so why not give one of them a go? And the Luke/Everyman reluctant reader test? He finished the book on his own during his ERIC (Everyone Reading In Class) time. And he was impressed that Shakespeare was able to draw exciting pictures too, so long ago.

Equally you can’t argue with the “production values” of the book. In addition to the whole text being illustrated in colour, you get a cast list, an introduction, a glossary which covers words that fall outside the CEFR B1/B2 corpus, pages on Shakespeare’s life, information about the real Macbeth, a family tree, a summary of the main characters, and some pages to take notes. You also get a table of (some) famous quotations in their original form, so you can compare these with the text’s version and explanations. It is printed on 144 pages of high quality, shiny paper which has a nice feel to it. Being a graphic novel, it is larger (and therefore 



Reviewed by

Mark Vevers Abu Dhabi Men’s College United Arab Emirates







Letters about ANZAC Day Sheila Duke National Centre for English Language Teaching and Research Macquarie University, 2005 ISBN 1-86408-938-5 76 pages

Letters About Anzac Day is part of a series of books called We Live in Australia. As the name suggests, these books have been designed to introduce language learners to important aspects of Australian culture and events that helped create an Australian identity. The story of the Anzacs (Australian New Zealand Army Corps) in Gallipoli is one of these events. This resource would be most suitable to Volume 16



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migrant students in Australia or students with a particular interest in learning about Australian history, perhaps as a unit of study on different countries.



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which provide plenty of opportunities to reinforce and practice the language and grammar contained in the reader as well as providing opportunities for student discussion and writing.

The reader is divided into three different levels starting at low elementary level and repeating the same story at high elementary and post elementary level. At each level the vocabulary and grammatical complexity of the language increases. Every page includes a photo or map which supports the text and adds interest and context for the struggling reader. Primary school children would be the most likely audience for this reader as one letter is from a father writing to his young son about his experience in Gallipoli and the other is composed by a young boy writing to his grandfather about ANZAC day. The style and language seems most appropriate for a younger reader.

The set out and packaging of Letters About Anzac Day make this a teacher friendly and highly usable resource although I feel more suitable to an Australian context than an EFL classroom.

Reviewed by

Loretta Consolati Abu Dhabi Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s College United Arab Emirates

The reader is also accompanied by an audio CD and a spiral bound set of photocopiable worksheets. The worksheets are again divided into three levels 









World Pass UpperIntermediate and Advanced Susan Stempleski, Nancy Douglas, James Morgan, Kristin L. Johannsen, Andy Curtis Heinle ELT, 2005 176 pages

World Pass is a two-level series for upperintermediate and advanced students. Its selfproclaimed aim is to help students improve their fluency, defined as their ability to say what they want in more than one way, and to say it clearly, confidently, and easily. World Pass sets out to do so in the following ways. Each unit begins with a section organized around vocabulary, grammar review, listening and speaking, with a communicative orientation. This is followed by a reading section with a selection of shorter, easier extracts and then longer, more difficult passages. After the reading section is a writing section and then an expansion section which allows Volume 16



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further vocabulary practice. This design is one of the strengths of the series, as it allows teachers to adapt the books to relatively stronger or weaker classes by using only the first, communicative section, introducing mainly grammar and vocabulary and allowing for plenty of listening and speaking practice, and limiting the reading to the easier selections. Stronger classes can go on to do the more difficult reading selections and the expansion sections as well.

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World Pass is in many ways Thomson’s answer to Headway or Cutting Edge: it is a modern, up-to-date integrated skills textbook with a communicative syllabus, aimed at young internationally-oriented students, specifically the European, Asian and Latin American university-aged students in the United States. While many passing references are American, as is the attempt to teach trendy and hip language (“now you’re talking,” “I had a hunch,” as well as multitasking, go getter, self-starter, and control freak) it is not as culturally America-bound as some past ESL textbooks that have failed to make it in the world of EFL. Themes and topics for discussion are up to date and interesting, such as technology, the workplace, family, money, travel, movies, education, urban living and the environment. The vocabulary presented in the series is useful, at the right level for the books’ intended audience, and is plentiful. Compound nouns, phrasal verbs, word forms, collocations, prefixes and suffixes, and guessing through context are all dealt with in vocabulary study. Further, there are suggestions to develop strategies for studying vocabulary. As the series is meant for higher levels, grammar is approached mainly as revision, with short explanations and examples serving almost as reminders, followed by a few practice exercises. Rules are often left unexplained, leaving students only examples from which to work them out for themselves. While grammar certainly makes its appearance in this communicative series, it is not center stage. The shorter, easier reading selections in the upperintermediate book tend to be rather constructedfor-EFL style texts, while the longer, more challenging selections resemble newspaper and general interest magazine articles. At the advanced level, even the shorter readings have a more authentic feel, while the longer readings range from

journalistic style to university textbook style, with even a few literary excerpts. A teacher already using another series as a main coursebook could use the reading and expansion sections from World Pass as a supplement. The level of these exercises varies so that a teacher could pick and choose the ones most suited to the needs of her or his learners. The expansion activities are also designed for self-study, so that students could work with these independently. World Pass, as its name implies, intends to be a student’s key to the globalized, English speaking world, and draws on themes which European, Japanese, and increasingly Chinese, Brazilian, Indian and South African students would all make common reference to. Whether students in the Gulf can relate to such issues is one of the greatest challenges to its use in this region. Many students in the Gulf region may not identify with the book, seeing English as a means to an education but not necessarily interested in leaving their traditional Islamic culture to join the trendy, wired and jet-setting world where pop culture references and fashion models are common currency. Whether such a Western-centric series has a good home in the Gulf is largely a matter of how skillful the teacher is who tries to make it work in the classroom, but it is certainly a versatile book that is as manageable as any of its rivals.

Reviewed by

Michael Fields Abu Dhabi Men’s College United Arab Emirates

Is there a new book or a piece of software you really enjoy using with students or one that has helped you in your teaching? Consider writing a review for Perspectives. Contact our Reviews Editor, Dr Atta Gebril, for more information. AttaG@uaeu.ac.ae Volume 16



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Spotlight on FCE: Student’s Book Jon Naunton & John Hughes Heinle Cengage Learning, 2009 ISBN : 978-1-4240-0919-0 240 Pages

The “old” and somewhat embattled FCE exam has undergone yet another revision as part of a concerted effort by Cambridge ESOL to reinvigorate demand for a language program that has largely been left behind in the global advance of IELTS, TOEFL and TOEIC. In its Handbook For Teachers (for examinations from December 2008), Cambridge ESOL indicates that “an examination which is more user friendly for candidates in terms of its length” (p. 3) was one of the factors affecting the redesign of the examination. This would appear to be reflected in the Reading paper, which now has three rather than four parts to be completed in one hour instead of the previous 75 minutes. While the Writing paper has been shortened by 10 minutes (to one hour 20 minutes), it is the Use of English paper that has been most heavily pruned; a reduction in the number of questions in parts 1-4, the removal of part 5 altogether and, at 45 minutes, only marginally longer than the time allotted for the Listening paper. For a general purpose qualification such as FCE , the revisions to the exam format might well prove to be a timely response to changing client and employer needs. For textbook publishers and writers on the other hand, the changes to the exam are a golden opportunity to launch “new”, “revised” and “updated” course books, workbooks and sets of practice tests.

Grammar, Use of English, Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing sections. The themes selected for inclusion are a mix of the tried and tested such as Friends and Family (Unit 1), Sport and Leisure (Unit 3) and Technology (Unit 7) and the more ambitious such as Crime and Social Responsibility (Unit 8) and New Traditions (Unit 15). The authors provide the reader with clear and concise overviews of both the book (p. 1) and the FCE examination (pp. 2-3) as well as a glossary (p. 4) of commonly used terms and expressions relating to the structure of the exam that are best learned and understood as early on in the course as possible. Both teachers and students will probably appreciate the various appendices (pp.165-239) the authors have included, especially the Writing Guide that consolidates, in context, the language required for all writing tasks at this level. The page referenced list of phrasal verbs will be similarly welcomed by those students who have hitherto been required to trawl through lists of these notorious verb forms in desperate preparation for the Use of English paper. The whole Spotlight package includes student’s and teacher’s books, Exam Booster DVD and Audio CD as well as an Online self-study book and a Test Bank CD Rom.

First off the mark is Spotlight on FCE by Jon Naunton and John Hughes, which admittedly has a more attractive ring to it than some of the other titles on the market such as Objective FCE, Ready for FCE and the splendidly mundane sounding Think FC. The book is divided into sixteen thematically distinct units, each unit comprising Vocabulary,

Each unit in the student’s book runs to 10 pages, presenting in roughly the same order the four language skills. An appropriate Review and Use of English section concludes each unit, sensibly allowing teachers and students to assess the progress that has been made. The texts selected for both Reading and Use of English papers are generally

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and colour drawing the reader’s eye to everything and nothing at the same time. This is, to be sure, the flaw in many an EFL course book, as writers and editors try to balance the needs of the learner with the restrictions imposed by the publisher but in this particular case and in this reviewer’s humble opinion, the “exam,” “skills,” “grammar” and “vocabulary” spotlights, as key features of the authors’ approach to FCE need to stand out much more than they presently do.

thought-provoking, humorous and lexically rich and as such should engage the interest of young and older learners alike. The passages chosen for Listening appear to come from an equally rich variety of sources although, in the absence of the accompanying CD, my comment is based exclusively on the tape scripts provided at the back of the book. Unfortunately the book’s opaque and oddly suggestive cover has a rather discomfiting and voyeuristic quality about it with its blurred images of two men who look as though they are being spied upon through binoculars. A more engaging and less ambiguous cover might be advisable for the next edition. After all, a “spotlight” is supposed to illuminate its subject, not obscure it. My main reservation, however, is that the book has, in places, a somewhat “crowded” feel to it. Ironically, in a course book with the word spotlight in its title, certain sections appear floodlit instead, with masses of text 



Reviewed by

Ian Cull Abu Dhabi Men’s College United Arab Emirates







World Around Maria Cleary Helbling Languages, 2008 ISBN 978-88- 95225-06-7 128 pages

World Around is a flexible new book designed to help teenagers from around the world hone their English language skills. World Around introduces cultural and social practices from around the English speaking world in a fun and engaging format. From England and Wales to Africa and Asia, students learn about a wide variety of aspects of life in every corner of the globe, all tied together with the common thread of the English language. With colorful pictures, a variety of topical issues, and technological links including a dedicated website and an audio CD that supports work throughout the book, there is much to hook in teenagers. The thrust of the book is very clearly aimed at capturing the interest of this challenging age group. Many of the topics are youth-oriented, from skateboarding to the

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UK Youth Parliament, and the book includes social issues likely to be relevant to students. From autism to fair-trade and from fighting consumerism to third world debt, the book has a strong socio-political tilt to dealing with some of the most contemporary issues. Whether these issues can galvanize your particular teen students is, of course, a choice each teacher must make for him/herself. One challenge each teacher meets in his/her career is the generation gap with students. How hip are you? This book introduces

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concepts that this reviewer may be too “fuddy-duddy” to know much about such as brandalism (the influence of corporate brands on society) or the intricacies of text messaging. For some teachers, learning with the students is part of the adventure; for others, being disconnected from the subject matter makes learner motivation that much harder. Apart from one photo of a sculpture of a naked couple, this reviewer could not find anything that would clearly be problematic for Gulf students. The sociopolitical nature of some of the topics does not seem revolutionary or offensive although some care may be needed when exploring foreign cultures and the approaches to tackling these issues. Additionally, the book might engage Gulf students a little more had there been a little more attention to the development of English in the Gulf and culturally related countries. Each unit includes opportunities to apply CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning), with a wide variety of subject matter including topics such as tourism, biology, and IT.While the book gives clear jumping off points for each CLIL topic, it remains up to the teacher to supplement the subjects started.This could be a problem for teachers who lack the time, resources, or expertise to locate such excursus. Hopefully the website will suggest some further resources. The book gives a grand tour of the Anglophone world. While half the book focuses on the British Isles, there are also sections on the rest of the world. This includes Asia and Africa, thus creating connections for students to make between places with which they are familiar and those which they may be learning about for the first time. Even the sections about the UK and North America are replete with references to their multicultural reality and the issue of social identity is one which students are invited to consider. As students read about how English has diffused to different parts of the world and how it has developed there, they gain a better knowledge of the diversity of English while practicing the standard British form. The book contains plenty of reading material, accompanied by the audio CD’s readings (also available as downloadable MP3s), to give the teacher topics to engage the learners. While there are plenty of comprehension questions, discussion questions, and exercises, this book can easily be turned into a stepping stone for getting students to explore a wide Volume 16



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variety of timely topics beyond the book. The teacher’s book contains many photocopiable exercises worksheets to help expand the course. The website was not fully operational at the time of review, but it is promising. Hopefully, this aspect of the book will also help to boost motivation for teenagers. Overall, the book offers a great platform for teenagers to explore some of the emerging social issues of our time in a fun and accessible manner. Teachers choose books based on what fits for their students, and if you have teenagers who are interested in the world and the latest goings-on, then this book may well be for them.

Reviewed by

T. Leo Schmitt Penn State University USA

ELT Advantage Practical professional development. Online, anytime. ELT Advantage is the first online professional development programme accredited by TESOL – the largest ELT organisation in the world. It offers unique opportunities for teachers to advance their professional knowledge whilst giving them flexibility to study at home at their own pace.

Each course takes 6 weeks to complete and contains: I 2 lessons per week (90 minutes each)

Special discoun t for TESOL A rabia members

I Practical assignments for each lesson I Moderated discussion board I 5-question quiz per lesson I Pre- and post-programme assessment I TESOL Certificate of Completion

For a full list of courses and more information visit us at: elt.heinle.com/eltadvantage

TESOL Arabia Perspectives



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TESOL Arabia Publications

The following volumes are now available from TESOL Arabia Publications: Best Practice in English Language Teaching. (2008). Edited by Adel Jendli, Christine Coombe & Salah Troudi with articles by Averil Coxhead, Fatma Alwan, Hazel Owen, Linda Madsen, Sufian Abu Rmaileh and Peter McLaren. Teaching Writing Skills in EFL: Theory, Research & Pedagogy. (2008). Edited by Christine Coombe, Adel Jendli & Peter Davidson with articles by Salah Troudi, Melanie Gobert, George Murdoch, Gary Pathare and Malcolm David Lewthwaite. Educational Technology in the Arabian Gulf: Theory, Research & Pedagogy. (2008). Edited by Peter Davidson, Justin Shewell & William Moore with articles by Phil Cozens, Jeff Knowling, Scott Webber, John Allan, Christine Sabieh and Lauren Stephenson. Teaching and Learning Vocabulary in Another Language. (2007). Edited by Peter Davidson, Christine Coombe, David Palfreyman, and Dwight Lloyd. Independent Learning Schemes: A Practical Approach. (2006). Edited by David Dixon, Heather Baba, Phil Cozens, & Mairi Thomas. English for Specific Purposes in the Arab World. (2005). Edited by Mabel S. Lahlou and Alan Richardson, includes articles by Ray Sheehan; Tharwat El-Sakran; Salem Mudallel; Agneta Svalberg and Hugh Busher; Simon Mellor-Clark. Assessment in the Arab World. (2005). Edited by Peter Davidson, Christine Coombe and Wayne Jones, includes articles by Deena Boraie and Ahmed Dewidar; Khalid Addamigh and Phil Scholfield; Barry Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Sullivan and Peter Davidson; Moin Amena; Sally Ali; James Milton. The Fundamentals of Language Assessment: A Practical Guide for Teachers in the Gulf. (2005). Edited by Dwight Lloyd, Peter Davidson and Christine Coombe. 2004 TESOL Arabia Proceedings, includes articles by: Andy Curtis; Janet Orr; Fatma Alwan; Lauren Stephenson; Jerald Cumbus; and Rubina Khan.

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English Australia Conference 2008 Engaging with the Many Dimensions of ELICOS: Learning, Teaching, Supporting, Marketing, Leading September 18-20, 2008 Hotel Realm, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia

to all of us. It was interesting to note that the strategies being worked out in classrooms, schools and colleges in Australia would also be familiar to teachers here in the Gulf. What was new to many of the conference participants was an explanation of the expectations, and the educational and social background of their Gulf students.

Les Kirkham President, TESOL Arabia leskirkham@gmail.com

English Australia’s annual conference this year was something of an experiment. Added to the familiar academic and pedagogical participants at such conferences were the associated elements of the “industry”, such as support staff, administrators, business people and marketing personnel associated with both the private and state sectors catering for international English language learners in Australia. A large proportion of these learners come from the Far East and the GCC region, which accounts for the invitation I received to attend as the representative of TESOL Arabia. The Australian Government Department responsible for the sector, Australian Education International, became involved as one of the major sponsors as they clearly have a major interest and responsibility in supporting the industry. It was their funding that supported my travel and attendance as our representative, one of the three teachers associations invited to the conference. The other two were based in Korea and Taiwan, and our task was to sit on a panel session presenting to, and discussing with, Australian teachers and administrators the background and experiences of language learners from our respective areas. It was clear that the pedagogical issues I was asked to help address were largely the issues that teachers come across on home territory in the Gulf, familiar

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International TESOL association representatives Les Kirkham, (President TESOL Arabia), Kai-chong Cheung (Vice-President, ETA ROC Taiwan), Mae-ran Park (President, KATE Korea) at the conference dinner.

The innovative character of the conference was reflected in the mix of exhibitors, ranging from publishers to healthcare companies, business software companies, and insurance companies. A similar mix was evident in the choice of plenary speakers. For example, on the one hand we had Michael McCarthy and Scott Thornbury, well known to TESOL Arabia conference-goers, and on the other, Simon Longstaff, the head of an Ethics Centre, and the Honourable Craig Emerson, the government Minister for Small Business and the Service Economy.

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The experiment in changing the character of the conference was an undoubted success, with many participants praising the opportunity to network with all parts of the service industry catering for international students. From anecdotal evidence at the event, this cross-industry precedent may well be

repeated by English Australia at their future conferences. I am grateful to Australian Education International and English Australia for the invitation and funding that enabled me to take part as the representative of TESOL Arabia in this very significant conference.

The 12th International INGED ELT Conference Putting the Best Foot Forward Anadolu Üniversitesi, Eskişehir, Turkey, October 23-25, 2008

Peter B. McLaren Al Ain Women's College Higher Colleges of Technology

The 12th International INGED (English Language Education Association of Turkey) Conference took place from October 23rd to October 25th, 2008 at Anadolu Üniversitesi, Eskişehir, and featured speakers from as far afield as Canada, the U.K. and Spain, as well as a large local representation (Turkish and non-Turkish) and a small smattering of speakers/presenters from the Gulf and wider Middle East region. The conference theme incorporated anything from practical hands-on sessions related to the “nuts and bolts” of the EFL/ESL teacher’s craft to more theoretical papers. There was also considerable emphasis placed on the use of “new” media (such as email, chat, etc.) to encourage and enhance our students’ access to, and creative use of, English. The main plenary sessions featured: a) Dr. Michael Berman of Oxford House College, on the topic of emotional intelligence in the English language classroom, b) Dr. Aydan Ersöz (the current chair of INGED) demonstrating the practical and universal nature of personality test style quizzes and surveys

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for generating language and intrinsic motivational interest, and c) Dr. Craig Dicker (the U.S. Embassy’s English Language Officer in Turkey). Dr. Dicker’s amusing and upbeat closing plenary served to lighten the mood and send the delegates home energised after a long weekend in which, inevitably, the constraints placed upon language (and other) teachers by national education systems, a lack of suitable resources and other outside concerns, was a recurrent theme. It was a well-judged end to the conference, reminding those in the field of the value, creativity and intrinsic rewards of the language teaching profession. Middle-Eastern representation was provided by Dr. Phyllis Wachob of the American University in Cairo, who demonstrated the dual use of simple feedback techniques – dual in that they give student feedback to the teacher, but also provide opportunities to practise writing about your opinions in the L2 (English). Azzam Premji, of Dubai Women’s College (Higher Colleges of Technology), co-presented joint research with a Turkish colleague, and Peter B. McLaren (now teaching in the UAE) presented research on the Native Speaker (NS) – Non-Native Speaker debate (NNS), initially carried out two years ago in Saudi Arabia (KSA). The INGED Conference also reserves several slots for first time Turkish presenters, in order to encourage their members to get involved (often very early in their teaching careers) with the concept and protocol of such conferences, and to see how we can

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help advance the field both professionally and theoretically by sharing ideas, theories and best practice.

respective applications, was appreciated by all at this well-attended conference. Peter B. McLaren, has been a member of TESOL Arabia for three years, has presented at the annual TESOL Arabia conference twice and at other international conferences. He received a TESOL Arabia travel grant to help offset the travel costs incurred in travelling to Eskişehir, Turkey.

Like many such conferences and gatherings, the opportunity for professional colleagues from many parts of the region and beyond to get together and share ideas, best practice and their particular views vis-à-vis theoretical developments and their

16th Annual Korean TESOL Conference, Seoul, Korea From the Networking Table October 25-26, 2008

Justin Shewell UAE University P.O. Box 17172 Al Ain, UAE

I had a wonderful opportunity in attending the 16th Annual Korea TESOL (KOTESOL) Conference in Seoul, Korea. It was an exceptional opportunity for me and an extremely valuable experience both professionally and personally. Having been on the organizing committee for the TESOL Arabia conference now for several years, it was interesting for me to see how another TESOL affiliate handles their annual conference. I was astonished at how large the KOTESOL 2008 conference actually was. It was held at Sookmyoung Women's University, a lovely university campus in the middle of Seoul. The conference took up half of the campus, comprising two buildings. There were over 170 concurrent sessions, featured presentations, plenaries, and over 80 different publishers and companies displaying their materials in the exhibition area, which was at least as big as TESOL Arabia, if not bigger. There was also a job fair which seemed popular among the conference goers.

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The quality of the presentations I attended was excellent. The presentations I attended included: Choosing a Suitable Graduate Degree Program, Teaching Methodologies in the 21st Century, and Innovative Assessment Techniques, among many others. I gave two presentations myself on using technology to teach vocabulary, and common pronunciation problems among Korean speakers of English, which is part of a larger project I have been working on at my university and in the region. It was interesting to see that teachers in other parts of the world are struggling with similar issues that we face here in the UAE and the Gulf. Often, I tend to localize issues and think they are specific to this region and culture, but I discovered that many of these same problems and issues exist in other places in the ELT world. In addition, I learned that we can gain ideas for effective solutions from colleagues around the globe. Another important part of attending any convention is networking. I was amazed to see so many people from outside Korea attending the conference. While traveling to the conference venue, I met someone who is teaching in Japan. Then, in the presenters’ room, I met a woman from the American University of Sharjah who was also presenting at the conference. Many of the presenters and featured speakers came from the USA, the UK, Europe and Asia, which offered wonderful opportunities to discuss ELT in different parts of the world.

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Fourth Annual International TEFL China Conference New Trends and Challenges Tonghua, China, 26-29 September 2008

Despite these differences, some of the problems China faces in the field of education will be familiar to us. Most English teachers I met in China, especially those at the school level, are thirsting for professional development, and took full advantage of

Les Kirkham President, TESOL Arabia leskirkham@gmail.com

“It’s wonderful to meet friends who have travelled from afar.” This Confucian aphorism proved to be the “people’s choice” of theme for this TEFL China conference, which brought together about 400 teachers and academics from various parts of China, as well as invited speakers from abroad, including a sprinkling of representatives from other teachers associations around the world, such as Jordan, Cuba, the USA, the UK and India. I was privileged to represent TESOL Arabia, and to give a featured presentation and workshop concerning the qualities of effective language teachers. I found the perceptions of this in China to be very similar to perceptions in other parts of the world. The educational system in China, in common with many others, is facing a great challenge in trying to provide for a burgeoning interest in, and need for, learning English. There are many differences between their situation and ours in the Gulf, not least that of scale. The number of students, teachers and schools involved is mind-boggling. For example, the total number of English teachers in China is more than the entire population of many of the major capital cities of the world. Amazingly, the subscription print run for the regular English teachers’ practical teaching journal, the English Coaching Paper is in excess of 3.7 million, a figure which is beyond the aspirations of many publications elsewhere.

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TESOL Arabia’s President, Les Kirkham, had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit the Great Wall of China while attending the 4th Annual International TEFL China Conference in September 2008.

meeting fellow-professionals from overseas. One issue that related to my presentation was that of changes about to take place in English language teacher training in China. After my talk and workshop, I learned from a number of government and university representatives that there are studies and discussions taking place preparatory to introducing a common structured approach to training throughout China. This does not exist at present, so is likely to lead to significant practical changes in the selection and training of teachers.

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On a more theoretical level, it is clear that Confucius is back in favour in China, and I heard many references to his writings in connection with education as well as other walks of life. There was a fascinating presentation from Professor Cui Gang of Tsinghua University on The Doctrine of the Mean in English Language Teaching in China which directly applied Confucian thought to ELT issues. Much of this parallels modern approaches with which professionally-aware teachers in the Gulf will be familiar. For example the eclectic conciliation of different teaching approaches to allow for students’ different learning styles, is now encouraged, with no particular style pursued to excess. Similarly the

existence of pre-existing culture in the learner (in this case Chinese) is to be respected and allowed for. An interesting comment from the speaker was the criticism of those who agree to a government (or any superior’s) opinion or directive simply to stay in favour. Again, it seems, this is advice derived directly from Confucian philosophy. For me personally this was a fascinating first visit to a country whose influence on the rest of the world is clearly going to increase in the coming years, and I am very grateful to TESOL Arabia for helping in the costs of my travel to China. Similarly, I am grateful to TEFL China for providing my domestic travel and accommodation within China.

TESOL ARABIA 2009 CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS

The Editor of the Proceedings of 15th Annual TESOL Arabia Conference would like to invite you to submit a paper based on your presentation at the conference to be considered for publication in the next volume of the Proceedings. Only those who presented at the most recent TESOL Arabia Conference may submit articles for the Proceedings. Please send your article to Mashael Al-Hamly at: Email: mashael2@hotmail.com Please follow the specifications outlined below: Articles should be between 3000-4000 words. Articles should be typed using Times New Roman, font size 12, with 1½ line spacing. If you include Tables and/or Figures, make sure they are no wider than 12 cms. Do not use color in Tables or Figures. Do not use footnotes. Only use "portrait" orientation (i.e. don't insert any pages in "landscape" orientation). Remove all hyperlinks. Include a complete list of references using APA style as outlined in the Publications Manual of the American Psychological Association, 5th edition (2001). Send articles electronically as a Word attachment. We will acknowledge receipt of articles within two weeks, except during the summer vacation in July and August.

Deadline for Submission: October 1, 2009

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Calendar of Upcoming Events March 12-14, 2009

(Africa and the Middle East) TESOL Arabia, "Learning in English: English in Learning," J.W. Marriot Hotel, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. E-mail leskirkham@gmail.com. Web site http://tesolarabia.com.

March 14-15, 2009

(Europe and Eurasia) TESOL Greece, "Back to the Future: English for All Ages," Hellenic American Union, Athens, Greece. E-mail pitychoutis@yahoo.com. Web site http://www.tesolgreece.com.

March 26-28, 2009

Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, 43rd Annual TESOL Convention and Exhibit, "Uncharted Mountains Forging New Pathways," Colorado Convention Center, Denver, Colorado, USA. Web site http://www.tesol.org/register.

March 31April 4, 2009

IATEFL.43rd Annual Conference and Exhibition, Cardiff, Wales, UK. website: www.iatefl.org

April 22-24, 2009

Penang English Language Learning & Teaching Association(PELLTA), "Matters : New Ways of Looking at English Language Teaching & Learning," Bayview Hotel, Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia. E-mail pelltapenang@yahoo.com. Web site http://pellta.tripod.com.

May 28-30, 2009

National Capital Language Resource Center, "Preparing Language Teachers for the 21st Century: Sixth International Language Teacher Educator Conference," The George Washington University Washington, D.C. E-mail LTE@nclrc.org. Web site http://nclrc.org/lte2009/.

July 31August 2, 2009

National Capital Language Resource Center, "Preparing Language Teachers for the 21st Century: Sixth International Language Teacher Educator Conference," The George Washington University Washington, D.C. E-mail LTE@nclrc.org. Web site http://nclrc.org/lte2009/.

August 21-23, 2009

(Asia and Oceania) English Language Teacher's Association of India, "Managing Mixed-Ability Classes." E-mail eltai_india@yahoo.co.in. Web site http://www.eltai.org.

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Building a Teacher Leadership Academy Christine Coombe, TAE SIG Co-chair

Under the leadership of Dr. Christine Coombe, the TESOL Arabia Testing, Assessment and Evaluation SIG are organizing a Teacher Leadership Academy (TLA) at Dubai Menâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s College on May 21-23, 2009. The purpose of the TLA is to provide teachers in the UAE with the requisite skills to develop themselves as teacher leaders and to lead their respective departments and/or institutions more effectively. The TLA will focus on teacher leadership at all levels (primary, secondary and tertiary) of an institution and/or organization and encourage teachers to take up leadership roles at their respective schools.

will work with that mentor in an online course to complete a work portfolio which will include the keeping of a leadership journal, as well as activities associated with each of the leadership modules they take during the training.

This project, funded by the US Department of State Middle East Partnership Initiative, features a 2-3 day face-to-face leadership academy to be conducted for a limited number of English language teachers of the area. Teacher participants from the primary, secondary or tertiary sectors are encouraged to submit expressions of interest if they would like to participate in the program. After the face-to-face training, participants will be assigned a mentor and

It is hoped that the Teacher Leadership Academy will help build a better, stronger leadership base within the UAE English language educational system. For more information or to secure a place on the Teacher Leadership Academy, contact Dr. Christine Coombe at christine.coombe@hct.ac.ae or 0506194796. Space on the TLA is limited so send a 250 word statement on why you would like to participate in the academy today!

Participants are also expected to work with the mentor to complete a course assessment. Upon the successful completion of this portfolio and assessment, participants will receive a certificate of completion. Selected teacher participants will then be invited to participate as trainers for a follow-up student leadership academy that is expected to take place in 2010.

Professional Development Course Grant Report University of Calgaryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s EdD Program Grant Recipient: David Litz I am currently enrolled in an EdD (Doctor of Education) program from the University of Calgary and I would like to thank TESOL Arabia for recently awarding me a professional development grant that assisted me with some of the financial Volume 16

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obligations of my fall semester course work. During the fall semester I completed two courses on current educational issues such as the role of organizational learning and transformational leadership in ELT management.

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ELT for K-12 and higher education is currently undergoing massive change and reform in countries throughout the Middle East. It is fairly evident that this change should not be haphazard, but should instead be managed, structured and focused on the design of true learning organizations which ultimately support improved student outcomes. This type of scenario is often referred to as organizational learning and it is my belief that the key component to the implementation of successful organizational learning is transformational leadership. Earlier models of educational and instructional leadership were control-based and focused on a domineering top-down model for the administration of educational institutions. Recent models of educational leadership for ELT, however, focus on a new style of transformational leader that is able to identify, articulate and foster a vision for their respective institutions. This involves the identification of new opportunities for the school, working in a collaborative manner to reach whole staff consensus on school priorities and communicating these priorities to students and staff. A second characteristic of the transformational leader is to convey and encourage high performance expectations and creativity and to model specific practices that set examples for others to follow. An additional element involves encouraging the staff and students to reflect on what they were doing and facilitating opportunities for staff professional development and intellectual stimulation. Another characteristic includes providing individualized

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support. This would involve providing moral support, treating all others with respect, understanding and concern for their well-being, showing appreciation for the work of others and taking the staff ’s opinion into account when making decisions. A fifth element is the practice of creating opportunities for all stakeholders to participate in school decision-making. It encompasses behavior which encourages collaboration among staff and assists in creating a widely shared set of norms, values and beliefs consistent with continuous improvement of services for students. The final element is the view that the transformational school leader needs to understand, adopt, integrate and monitor modern and effective instructional and assessment practices and curriculum programs that reflect current educational cognitive understanding and the needs of the students and stakeholders. This would undoubtedly require that our leaders also have an understanding of the aspects of administration and leadership in addition to having a great deal of knowledge and expertise in the sphere of curriculum, teaching and learning. During the next few semesters I hope to undertake several more doctoral courses on quantitative and qualitative research methods, instructional design and school-based professional development. It is my hope that one day I will be able to expand and apply my knowledge and understanding of educational leadership and ultimately assist in the advancement of the UAE educational system. Thanks again to TESOL Arabia for all of your assistance.

Professional Development Course Grant Report Three R’s Reigniting, Retooling, and Retiring in TESOL Grant Recipient: Hilal Onat The personal development course titled Three R’s: Reigniting, Retooling and Retiring in TESOL took place at Dubai Men’s College during the TESOL Arabia 2008 Conference between 13-15 March as a separate 3 full days course. As a teacher of English Volume 16

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for 19 years, who is on the edge of burn out, I found the sessions quite interesting. They were all guiding us or giving us tips on how to prevent burnout, how to reignite, retool and retire from TESOL one day. N

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On the first day, the first session Burnout in ELT: Strategies for Recovery and Prevention was given by Christine Coombe, Liz England and John Schmidt. Speakers started by giving examples of the latest burnouts they had experienced and explained the meaning of burnout in our lives. They also mentioned the outcomes of burnout which include leaving the profession, downshifting or changing your position in your career and reframing your sense of identity as an educator. After they talked about their burnouts, I tried to remember the latest burnouts I have experienced. Of course living in different countries- me, in Turkey- and working with different people and students from different nationalities may lead you to experience different burnouts and have different results. Working conditions, what we have in reality and what we expect to have in our working environment are all different and I believe that it affects our reactions towards the burnouts we have. The speakers mentioned that burnout is something that we can control in our lives and it is possible to prevent burnout and recover from it. As teachers what we should do is that we should create a balance between body, mind and soul in our lives. For instance, we should be a part of a project that we really care about and that we can control. We should identify a need for something and address that need. Speakers pointed out that burnout can be experienced differently in different levels of teaching. If you are an administrator, to prevent burn out, you can ask help from your teachers. By bringing your teachers together to work on a project, you can create an extracurricular program. You can also provide your staff with a program and encourage them to develop their professional background. The presenters also added that having a new routine or having a new job, moving to a new environment or location, and/or rediscovering your love of the profession is the key to recovering from professional burnout. After I heard about the things mentioned above, I thought that I was lucky because all the things they recommended to prevent burnout were the things I was applying in my life. For example, after working as a teacher for 17 years, I started working as a member of a testing team in my school. Honestly, I must admit that looking at ELT as a profession from a different angle cured my

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boredom of teaching. I started feeling more selfconfident in my subject area, as testing was something I haven’t done before. In order to create awareness of burn out recovery, the speakers provided us with the following guidance. From time to time, we should remind ourselves of the following: what activities I do now, what activities get me physically fit, what activities I like doing now, what activities keep me professionally engaged, what activities I liked doing in the past, what activities I never had time to do before, and what activities I did in the past. This will help us spot the problem areas in our lives, set a plan for certain do’s and don’ts to prevent burnout. The guidance given by the speakers made me think about my relations with my friends at work. I realized that we often ask those questions above to each other during our meetings both at school and out of school. We sometimes act as guides and get support from each other for our academic and non-academic needs. Therefore, I may say that the culture I am living in is an advantage for me because sometimes we fight burnout as a team. Briefly, the things the speakers shared with us during the session were really informative and guiding. We realized that burnout is something you can cope with providing that you want to get out of it. The lesson I got out of this session is that personally I have a long way to go to before I suffer from burnout, as I have been doing many things to prevent burnout. The result has been a good one.

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Executive Treasurer SIG Coordinator Eastern Region Chapter Rep If interested, please contact: jkennedy@hct.ac.ae

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TESOL Arabia Young Learners SIG Morning of Workshops Micheline Habib, YL SIG Chair

November 22nd witnessed the Young Learner’s SIG’s first event. It was hosted by Al Hosn University in Abu Dhabi and sponsored by Cambridge University Press. The event had a high turn out. More than 60 teachers, teachers’ assistants and coordinators, the majority of which were non-TESOL Arabia members, attended and turned the event into a success.

After a short break during which the attendees enjoyed coffee and snacks, they went back to get “hands on” with the presentation, Games and Activities to Teach Phonics and Math to KG Children with Micheline Habib. In the meantime, another group gained insight into how prepositions work and can be used in a primary classroom in Will Moore’s Prepositions at Work.

Those who attended showed up with a clear interest in the event’s program and left with the intention of becoming TESOL Arabia members in order to be able to attend all YL SIG future events as well as others put on by TESOL Arabia.

At the end of the day, the attendees left with certificates and free reference books from the event’s sponsor, Cambridge University Press. A questionnaire filled out by those who attended affirmed that they not only enjoyed the event but were also looking forward to future ones.

The day had 4 presentations, including one on Special Needs Children and What We Need to Teach Them with Kimberley Aaron and a presentation by Keith Grehan entitled Using Popular Children's Characters to Teach Story Element to Young Children.

The success of November’s event clearly showed that there is a strong level of interest in the Young Learner SIG events and is sure to fuel the drive to plan for bigger and better events in future. That is a promise.

Literature Special Interest Group in 2009 Spreading the Arts Graeme Tennent, LitSig Chair

On October 11, 2008, Helen Wheelock and Steven Elm gave an excellent workshop in Theatre in Education at HCT Women’s College in Ras Al-Khaimah. The thirty or forty participants, mainly national teachers and B.Ed students, were delighted with the range and diversity of the activities presented by Helen and Steve. This was an active presentation with lots of classroom ideas.

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The workshop was the outcome of cooperation between TESOL Arabia Lit Sig, TESOL Arabia RAK chapter and UAE University Literature Department and many thanks should go to Anna Bailey, the RAK TESOL Arabia representative who did so much to organize the gathering. Helen and Steve from the City University of New York Theatre in Education Group were in the UAE as part of a series of five workshops being given to promote fine arts in the university. A further workshop in

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puppetry will be presented in April/May in RAK. An event co-sponsored by TESOL Arabia on Poetry in English and Arabic will be held in Sharjah. It is hoped this project will continue in the next academic year and that the LitSig can help promote the arts through more cooperative ventures with local TESOL Arabia chapters. As the LitSig has no accessible group of members, it seems best to promote it through ventures with the local chapters throughout the Emirates until such time as the LitSig has its own membership base. However, should members have particular ideas for workshops and presentations, they should contact their local chapter and the LitSig. In past years, the Litsig produced two publications of the writings of members. While these revealed the artistic talent which abounds in the classrooms of the UAE and the Gulf, these were not “bestsellers!” However, if some creative person

Helen Wheelock of City University New York leads the action.

would like to produce an on-line literary journal/forum for TESOL Arabia members, I am sure there would be a positive response. Anyone interested? I can be contacted at graemet@uaeu.ac.ae .

Instructional Technologies Revisited Will Moore, IT SIG Chair

What does “Instructional Technologies” mean? Does it refer only to machines that help us teach? IT so often refers to Information Technology that when we say that we mean Instructional Technologies, people just brush it aside mentally and think to themselves:”Oh yes, he wants to include Smart Boards and Moodle and Projectors and such.” For the most part those people would be right. That is what the majority of people are into learning how to use these days. At least that’s what the media and market would have you believe. But I think differently. I think that Instructional Technologies also refers to “Instructional Techniques.” Books were once a new classroom technology, and before that it was chalk and slate boards. Overhead projectors were nice passive machines. The use of “Learning Stations” was a real innovative teaching technique, and certainly rates as a technology when applied well. Volume 16

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So don’t be put off if you can’t Moodle or Blackberry or I-Pod your way through class. If you have just learned how to use music to teach something, great, so long as it is applied technologically – with technique! We want to know what systematic methods you use in the classroom. One of my old professors once told me about the meaning of “Rote”, as in “rote learning.” He said he used to review his students’ note books as the end of semester approached, and in the margin of their books, if they had kept good notes, alongside important pieces he would write “ROTE.” This was his code for “Remember, On The Exam.” I rather like his version of “Rote learning.” So remember, IT might mean one thing to some people, but you are allowed to interpret it almost as you wish. We look forward to seeing you out there on the workshop floor, presenting or attending, both equally good!

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FLA in Uzbekistan Christine Coombe & Peter Davidson, Testing, Assessment & Evaluation SIG Co-Chairs

TESOL Arabia Testing SIG Co-chairs, Christine Coombe and Peter Davidson, spent their Eid holidays conducting two Fundamentals of Language Assessment (FLA) workshops in the Silk Road cities of Bukhara and Samarkand in Uzbekistan. Sponsored in part by a TOEFL Board Grant from ETS and the US Department of State, Christine and Peter delivered five hours of basic level assessment training to approximately 40 teachers at both Bukhara State University and the University of Samarkand. These workshops were

very well received and plans are underway for more FLAs in Uzbekistan and other Central Asian countries. The mission of the TESOL Arabia Testing SIG is to provide assessment training to English language teaching professionals with a goal of helping teachers in the region develop assessment literacy. To date, FLAs have been held in every Emirate and in countries like Egypt, Nepal, Bahrain and Thailand. Another FLA has been scheduled at the American University of Armenia in Yerevan in May 2009.

Christine Coombe emphasizes a point in Samarkind.

Teachers busily engaged in a task in Samarkind.

Peter Davidson making a presentation in Bukhara.

FLA attendees at Bukhara State University

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I feel the breadth of the modules, the enthusiasm of the tutors in their subject areas and the discussion between participants makes this programme top-notch. EdD TESOL student, Dubai

TESOL Programmes The School of Education and Lifelong Learning is recognised as a leading School of Education with a diverse and highly successful track record, including: • Ranked 5th in the UK for world leading and internationally excellent research (RAE 2008) and influencer of national Education policy • Ranked 3rd in The Times Good University Guide 2009 and in the top eight in the latest Guardian and Independent Education league tables • ESRC-recognised outlet for part-time, full-time, distance learning and CASE research training • ESRC quota for research studentships • Ranked 6th in the UK for Education in the National Student Survey (2008) • International community with postgraduates from over 70 countries studying in the School over the last 5 years

Doctor of Education (EdD) – available in Dubai Dubai Knowledge Village. Programme Coordinator: Dr Salah Troudi, email: s.troudi@exeter.ac.uk This is a professionally-oriented taught doctorate degree suitable for EFL/ESL professionals, including primary and secondary teachers, college lecturers, and programme coordinators. The degree is taught part-time over four years and local tutors are available for your support. The programme consists of two compulsory research methodology modules, plus three modules selected from the following: • Psychology in Foreign Language Teaching • Critical Issues in Teaching English • Language Teacher Education • Leadership and Management in Education • Discourse Pedagogy and Identity • Curriculum Issues in TESOL Language Education You will then complete a research-based thesis of up to 50,000 words.

MPhil and PhD – available in Dubai The School has an outstanding reputation for research training and offers MPhil and PhD degrees involving independent study under two supervisors, culminating in the presentation of a written thesis. Full- and part-time study is available.

Masters programme – new intensive summer study option The Masters in TESOL is aimed at professionals working at primary, secondary and tertiary levels. The programme is flexible, allowing you to choose from the wide range of modules available. Prior to starting the programme, a member of our academic staff will help you plan out the best programme to meet your needs. The programme is available full-time (1 year) and through an intensive summer programme that takes place in July over two consecutive summers.

School of Education and Lifelong Learning For more information please visit www.exeter.ac.uk/education telephone + 44 (0) 1392 264837 or email ed-student@exeter.ac.uk


Chapter Reports

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Abu Dhabi Chapter Report Ahmed Saadawi

Abu Dhabi Chapter celebrated the first semester with two events on October 18 and December 20, in addition to a joint event with the Young Learners SIG on November 22. ADWC hosted the first event which offered six workshops, presentations and/or discussion sessions on a variety of topics. Those were Dr. Khadar Bashir-Ali’s Literacy and Content Based Instruction for L2 Learners, Gehan Wheeler and Loretta Consolati’s ADWC Diploma Reading Initiative, Jo Kennedy’s Critical Thinking Activities for Language Learners, Olfa Samra’s Steps to Buildup Learners’ Autonomy & Self-confidence, Joe Givens’s Critical Thinking Skills in the Classroom, and Josef Hurtubise’s Process Writing: L1 Pedagogy, L2 Applications, all of which had positive feedback.

Dr. Ahmed hands a TESOL bag to Loretta Consolati, a presenter and raffle winner.

Abu Dhabi Chapter Discovers New Land

Dr. Khadar presents on literacy and content-based instruction.

The representative of AD Chapter, Dr. Ahmed Saadawi, kept his promise to entertain the participants at all of our events this year with raffles. On December 20, he gave out 40 prizes including books and TESOL bags to the holders of lucky numbers. He also thanked Tandy Bailey-Seffar and Janet Roberts from ADWC for hosting the event there. He finally made a few announcements on the new online payment service and the efforts to solve membership issues of the AD Chapter members.

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The Abu Dhabi branch of Fatima College of Health Science (FCHS) hosted the second event in its new building at Khalifa University Campus, located at the corner of Muroor Street (4th Street) and Al Saada Street (19th Street). The event was well attended with more than 120 participants from different educational institutions and cultural backgrounds, and it offered eight presentations as well as various pleasant surprises in the form of a raffle. The Membership Secretary, Conference CoChair and President, Les Kirkham was also in attendance with Sandra Oddy, Conference CoChair and Member-at-Large. Presenters Tom Le Seelleur looked at some of the tools for reading as a linguistic skill and introduced the Reading Champions campaign, Fathi Ben Mohamed discussed how to use scaffolded instruction to optimize learning, Mick King introduced and discussed some critical thinking rules, and Josef Hurtubise repeated his workshop on process writing upon the request of AD Chapter members. In addition, Dr. Khadar Bashir-Ali explored the possibility of developing community of practice in our profession. Wafaa Genady presented on reflective teaching and performance assessment. Mayasser TESOL Arabia Perspectives



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Abdul Kadir discussed teaching listening and speaking in the UAE schools, and Mokhtar Trabelsi raised the issue of how to create the best environment for language learning. The event included draws on TESOL Conference bags, free TESOL books and copies of Perspectives.

37 participants got TESOL bags, books and copies of Perspectives.

Three Joint Events to Come in the New Year

More than 120 participants attended the December 20 event.

AD Chapter Needs You! Join the Family Now! The Abu Dhabi Chapter welcomes your help as an experienced and knowledgeable teacher who has a lot to contribute. Join us as a member of the Chapter family and help us at the Registration Desk or as a Publication Person at our events. If interested, please contact Ahmed Saadawi at a_saadawi@yahoo.com or on 050-771255.



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Event

Date

Venue

Event Topic

Special Information

Meeting 1

Feb 7

AD University

Testing SIG-AD Chapter Event (TAE SIG)

Raffles

Meeting 2

April 18 Zayed University

IT for Young Learners Morning (IT SIG)

Raffles

Meeting 3

May 2

Independent Learning Research Morning (LI SIG)

Raffles

ADMC

For more information on TESOL Arabia Chapter Events, see our calendar at http://tesolarabia.org

Josef Hurtubise repeats his presentation for our members.

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The Abu Dhabi Chapter will continue to offer a variety of workshops, presentations and open forums throughout this year that will support and serve your PD needs. Teaming up with three more SIGs, we will co-organize three scheduled events in the second semester. Each will generally offer you a choice of six presentations, and run from 09:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturdays. You are most welcome. Please read the following table for further information:



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Sharjah Chapter Report T. Leo Schmitt

The Sharjah chapter has kept busy since our last report. We have now welcomed a new member to our team. Halina Campa, of the American University of Sharjah (AUS), has taken over responsibility for our newsletter and is also helping us with the design of the fliers and programs for our events. If you would like to submit something for our newsletter, whether a quick classroom tip or a much longer article or lesson plan, she would love to hear from you. You can reach her at hcampa@aus.edu.

Christine Coombe warns teachers about burnout and suggests ways to avoid it, October 12.

warn and advise teachers about burnout in ELT, while Lina Hejjawi (AUS) showed presentations that really work. Tom Le Seelleur showed how to get students into the habit of reading, and Richard McClane (AUS) showed us professional development so easy you can do it in your slippers. Jennifer Vahanian (AUS) showed some pre-writing activities you can do using sound and video, while Mick King (Sharjah Women’s College) talked about the practicalities of Project Based Learning for English for Academic Purposes.

Participants listen to Lina Hejjawi’s presentation on getting presentations to work, October 12.

At the time of writing, we have held two chapter events since the beginning of the academic year. The first, Growing in the Profession as the Profession Grows, was held on October 11. We were fortunate to have our current President, Membership Secretary, and Conference Co-Chair, Les Kirkham, as well as the other Conference Co-Chair, Sandra Oddy, in attendance. Les spoke about the changes in our membership company and was able to renew and start many memberships in TESOL Arabia as well as take some early conference bookings. Over 120 people turned out for this event coming from as far away as Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, and Fujairah. Christine Coombe (Dubai Men’s College) came to

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Showing and Sharing in EFL was our second event of the season. Unfortunately, it was held on November 1, which was declared a make-up teaching day by the Ministry of Education. We at the Sharjah Chapter did not hear about the change until two days before the event, so we had no opportunity to make any changes. We offer our sincere apologies to those who were inconvenienced by this unforeseen event. On the positive side, there were more than enough sandwiches for everyone! Several teachers were able to be excused from their regular classes to attend and there were also teachers from universities and private and international schools. Over forty people managed to attend despite the difficulties.

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resources to waste on overproduction. If possible, please pre-register if you plan to attend one of our events. Details are available on the website, on the frequent mailings, or by contacting our secretary, Mona El Samaty at monaelsamaty@gmail.com. We would like to thank our speakers and all the volunteers who have worked so hard to make our events at Sharjah so well-received. We continue to work to better serve our members and other professionals. We also would like to thank the American University of Sharjah for graciously hosting these events in the Intensive English Program. Growing in the Profession as the Profession Grows, October 12.

Cindy Gunn (AUS) talked about student mistakes and how to make the most of them, while Elena Danilina (AUS) introduced her fun-e-folio and reading fun. David Jeffrey (AUS) then discussed teacher diary studies and how they can benefit us. Tom Alibrandi (AUS) brought drama into the ESL classroom, and Kelley Fast talked about reading circles in a speaking class. We again had several publishers on hand to show and discuss their latest books.

Tom Alibrandi introduces drama into the ESL classroom, November 1.

In the interests of transparency, the Sharjah chapter will begin publishing details of our expense and revenue in the Sharjah newsletter (available online). We have a small amount of money from the Executive Council and get some revenue from nonmembersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; fees. With this, we are able to buy refreshments, print certificates and programs, and generally put on the events throughout the year. If you have any questions about this, please feel free to contact me or anyone on the Sharjah team. If you are interested in sharing an idea, making a presentation, contributing to expanding our newsletter, coming to our meetings, or just keeping informed, please do not hesitate to contact me or any of the Sharjah chapter team. We look forward to hearing from you.

David Jeffrey discusses Teacher Diaries, November 1.

I would like to make a quick note on preregistration. We organize our events to be as accommodating as possible. However, we do ask people to pre-register if possible to ensure that we have sufficient certificates and refreshments for everyone. We do not want people to leave hungry or without a certificate, but neither do we have

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Dubai Chapter Report Rehnab Ragab

Dubai Chapter’s new team, Rehab Ragab, Jinan Basma and Dima Al Nsour would like to wish all the members a very happy festive season and hope you will enjoy and benefit from our professional development events in 2009. We would like to thank all the speakers who volunteered to share their expertise and knowledge at our first two events, November 22, 2008, Classroom Management Techniques and December 27, 2008, Educational Applications of New Technologies.

John Price, presenting VoiceThread…Let’s Talk! on December 27, at the Institute of Applied Technology in Dubai.

Future Events Don’t miss the upcoming events which will be practical workshops on various topics of interest to ESL teachers as well as teachers who use English as a medium of instruction to non-native speakers. If you wish to present, please download and fill in the proposal form from our blog and send it to our chapter representative, Rehab Ragab at rehabrajab@yahoo.com.

Our Brand New Blog By launching TESOL Arabia Dubai Chapter Blog at http://dubaichapter.edublogs.org/ we hope to take your communication with Dubai Chapter to a new level of continuous support and feedback. This blog will be your window to keep up-to-date with all the chapter news, upcoming events, presenters, venue locations and more. You will be able to post comments on most of the entries. So, if you have inquiries about any of the sessions or venues, you will be able to send them to us without having to send e-mails. We will also accept registrations for Dubai events through this blog. You can add our RSS feed http://dubaichapter.edublogs.org/feed/ to your personalized aggregator or subscribe to the blog to get our news as updated sent to your e-mail.

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Elizabeth Noel during her November 22nd presentation on Lessons with the Internet, at the Canadian University in Dubai.

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Western Region Chapter Report Mohammad Azaza

A highlight of the Western Region events this academic year (2008/2009) was the first TESOL Arabia event held at Al-Gharbiya Model School in Madinat Zayed. Over one hundred teachers from different educational institutions in the Western Zone (Madinat Zayed Colleges, Model Schools, AlGhad Schools, PP Schools and other Public Schools) attended the event. TESOL Arabia bags, gift pens and block notes were distributed to the TESOL Arabia members who attended and the event was also a good opportunity for teachers to meet, exchange ideas and even materials. Free TESOL Arabia bags being given out at a raffle.

Ziad Hadla from Madinat Zayed Colleges led a workshop entitled Studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; and Teachersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Perceptions of Native versus Non-native English Teachers at College Level in the UAE. Another concurrent session was led by Pablo Candela who reported on an action research study which looked at the amount of time students spend on a computer on a weekly basis both on campus and at home. Two other concurrent sessions were held after the coffee break. Peter Stanfield presented the findings of a recent case study of a unique Strategic Planning Day in a tertiary college in the UAE. It sought to generate

TESOL Arabia President, Les Kirkham, addressing the Western Region members.

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ideas through the collaboration of all institutional employees with the aim of increasing effective implementation of the strategic plan. The other workshop reported on a recent action research project investigating the effect of phonics instruction on improving the spelling performance of a group of young Emirati learners. Hedi Larabi, Salima Trabelsi and Mohamed Azaza discussed both the benefits and the challenges of teaching phonics in a local setting. They also described various techniques and activities used in the teaching of phonics.

The Membership Desk was continuously busy during the event.

Ziad Hadla leading a workshop entitled Studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; and Teachersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Perceptions of Native versus Non-native English Speaker Teachers at College Level in the UAE.

This event was made possible thanks to a concerted team effort. It would not have been so successful without the support of the Western Educational Zone, Higher Colleges of Technology Madinat Zayed Colleges, Al-Gharbia Model School and the TESOL Arabia Western Region Committee. Thanks should also be extended to our presenters Ziad Hadla, Pablo Candela, Peter Stanfield, Hedi Larabi, Salima Trabelsi and Mohamed Azaza. Furthermore, it was a good opportunity for TESOL Arabia President, Les Kirkham, to address the attendees and explain the benefits of joining TESOL Arabia. He also gave a short presentation about TESOL Arabia research and study grants and encouraged members to apply for the two grants. Moreover, the membership desk did a very brisk business, successfully selling some TESOL Arabia books and obtaining 39 memberships, 18 of which were new.

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As we continue to grow and establish ourselves in the Western Region, we welcome your ideas, participation and feedback. If you are interested in leading a workshop, please send us a bio and an abstract of the presentation. Other meetings are scheduled for February 14, a Learner Independence SIG Event, and April 25, the Western Region MiniConference. Full details are available on the website: www.tesolarabia.org. You may also contact Mohamed Azaza at 050 7803988 or email him at amelki22@yahoo.com. 









Have you been to a professional development event or conference lately that you think TESOL Arabia members might benefit from? Consider writing a review of the event. Contact the editors for more information.

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Chapter Represenatives

52

TESOL Arabia Chapter Representatives Abu Dhabi Representative Ahmed Saadawi IAT PreCORE Program Khalifa University of Science, Technology & Research (KUSTAR) PO Box 127733, Abu Dhabi, UAE 02 444 3763 (office), 02 444 5143 (fax) 050 771-7255 (mobile) a_saadawi@yahoo.com

Al Ain Representative Mokhtar Trabelsi Ministry of Education and Youth PO Box 1245, Al Ain, UAE 03 751 2662 (res) 050 563 0238 (mobile) noorkha97@hotmail.com

Sharjah Representative Mona El Samaty University of Sharjah College of Arts English Department P. O. Box 27272, Sharjah, UAE 06 505 3349 (office) monaelsamaty@gmail.com

Dubai Representative Rehab Rejab Institute of Applied Technology PO Box 124354 Dubai, United Arab Emirates 050 637 5957 (mobile) rehabrajab@yahoo.com

RAK Representative Anna Bailey Ras Al Khaimah Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s College â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Higher Colleges of Technology PO Box 4792, Ras Al Khaimah, UAE 07 202 5230 (office) anna.bailey@hct.ac.ae, rakrep@yahoo.co.uk

Eastern Region Representatives Abdelbasset Jeddi PO Box 1432, Fujairah,UAE 050 710 5233 (mobile) jeddi_a@hotmail.com

Nejib Ali Fujairah Educational Zone PO Box 62, Fujairah,UAE 050 540 5568 (mobile) hakunamattata2000@yahoo.com

Western Region Representative Mohammad Azaza Zayed Al-Khair Model School PO Box 57657, Zayed Town, UAE 02 884 4453 (office), 02 884 4478 (fax ), 050 780 3988 (mobile) amelki22@yahoo.com

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Membership Form

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TESOL Arabia 2008-2009 Please complete this application form and follow the directions for payment on the reverse. Please note that membership fees are not refundable. TESOL Arabia Secretariat, I C & E, PO Box 29884, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Fax: +971 4 3355141 Tel: +971 4 3372718 Email: tesolarabia@icedxb.com Please check one: 

175 UAE Dirhams

regular* - for applicants residing within the GCC countries**



135 UAE Dirhams

for primary & secondary school teachers residing within the GCC countries



135 UAE Dirhams

for full-time students (with letter of confirmation from college or university) residing within the GCC countries



250 UAE Dirhams

for international membership (all members residing outside the GCC)

All information given in this form will remain confidential and is solely for the use of TESOL Arabia. First Name: ________________________ Last Name: Postal address: PO Box

_________________________________

__________________________________________________________

City __________________________________________________________________________ Country ______________________________________________________________________ Is the above your place of work, or your personal address? (please circle)

Work

Personal

Email: _________________________________________________________________________ Email addresses will be used to contact you about many TESOL Arabia matters. Please ensure your address is correct. Your address will also be added to the TESOL Arabia Internet announcement list to receive announcements unless you tick here.  Contact Tel: ________________________________ Fax: ______________________________ Name of place of work: ___________________________________________________________ (i.e. name of school, company, college, university etc.)

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Membership Form

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TESOL Arabia Special Interest Groups – please circle up to TWO SIGs of your choice: ESP Instructional Technology Learner Independence Literature Testing Young Learners TESOL Arabia Branches – UAE residents please circle the branch you want to contact you: Abu Dhabi Al Ain Dubai Fujairah + East Coast Ras Al Khaimah Sharjah

Western Region

METHODS OF PAYMENT     

The fee payable is the one applicable at the time we receive your application for membership. We can only process your membership once your application has been received. All payments must be in UAE dirhams. CASH, CHEQUE, BANK DRAFT CASH must be paid in UAE dirhams in person at I C & E’s offices in Dubai. Room 413 Sultan Business Centre (Next to Lamcy Plaza) Dubai



DIRECT DEPOSITS should be deposited in UAE dirhams only to:    

Mashreq Bank, Park Place Branch, Dubai, UAE Account number: 0994710846 Account name: International Conferences & Exhibitions LLC Swift code: MSHQUS33XXX The original deposit slip (usually pink in colour) must be sent with the membership application form to IC&E at the address on the form.



CHEQUES or BANK DRAFT must be in UAE dirhams made payable to:

“International Conferences & Exhibitions LLC” The cheque or draft should be sent to IC&E at the address on the form with the membership application form. If you do not receive a RECEIPT within two weeks of applying, please contact us at: TESOL Arabia, IC & E, P.O. Box 29884, Dubai, UAE Tel: +971 4 3372718, Fax +971 4 3355141, Email: tesolarabia@icedxb.com * 'Regular' membership is for people employed at the government system post-secondary education level or the private sector equivalent, or are otherwise outside the recognised primary or secondary schooling system. Decisions made by the Membership Secretary regarding categories of membership are final. **Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates

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Guidelines for Contributors

55

Guidelines for Contributors for review will be made available periodically in Perspectives. Please contact Dr. Atta Gebril, the Reviews Editor, at AttaG@uaeu.ac.ae.

General Editorial Policies TESOL Arabia Perspectives is the official publication of TESOL Arabia, designed to meet the organization’s professional objectives by publishing articles that discuss the teaching and learning of English as an additional language at all levels and with a particular focus on the region (the Gulf, Middle East, North Africa and South Asia). TESOL Arabia Perspectives invites previously unpublished manuscripts that address the diverse topics that make up our profession, including, but not limited to, methodology, pedagogy, curriculum and materials development, assessment, classroom inquiry and research, teacher education and language and culture.

Emerging Technologies This section will document short articles of about 5001000 words that provide overviews of educational technologies, their utilities and incorporation into practice. This could include software, hardware, and web-based resources.

Networking This section will feature conference and country reports. Reports will range between 250-1000 words. Conference reports should provide the readers with a good overview of the conference in question as well as some personal insights of how it impacted the author. Country reports can provide a glimpse of professional activities, concerns and projects in the Photos with captions must accompany the submission.

Submission Categories & Guidelines Feature Articles Features should generally be between 2000-3000 words in length, and address educational issues (theory leading to practice) relevant to the membership. The articles can document a critical survey of a particular aspect of the field, detail and analyze pedagogical issues, describe and discuss research findings, or highlight contextual factors and their implications for educational practice. All submissions should be thought through, organized, and clearly written. APA style format will be strictly adhered to regarding referencing. Submissions must be in Times New Roman, font size 12, single-spaced and double spaced between paragraphs. Submissions not meeting APA standards will not be reviewed. Every feature article will go through a review process where the reviewers consider how well it:  





Reader’s Response Reader’s Response gives the readers a forum to respond to articles published in previous issues. Responses should focus on the content of an article and provide reasoned feedback. Responses should be between 500 – 1000 words.

Lesson Ideas Do you have a great lesson idea or an activity that others should know about? Lesson Ideas offers teachers the opportunity to share their activities in context. Submissions should be between 500-1000 words and detail the activity as well as provide a context for usage.

discusses issues that seek to inform practice; contributes to the knowledge base for teaching and teacher education in general, and in the region in particular; addresses educational issues and needs of ELT in the region; identifies an educational research agenda.

Photographs and other images In order to avoid poor quality images, please submit the largest size and best resolution images you have. This should be at least 300 dpi and saved as a tiff, eps, or jpeg (in order of preference). Headshots and brief bios including the author's current professional affiliation must accompany all submissions.

Reviews

Send your submissions to:

Reviews should evaluate any recent textbook, resource book, CD/DVD and audio or video title. Reviews should be 500–1000 words in length and evaluate materials for their approach, content, appropriateness, adaptability, and relevancy. A list of materials received

Melanie Gobert & Rebecca Woll TESOL Arabia Perspectives Co-editors Melanie.gobert@hct.ac.ae Rebecca.woll@hct.ac.ae

Deadline for the next Issue: March 30, 2009 TESOL Arabia Perspectives is published three times a year: November, January and June Volume 16



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Executive Council

56

TESOL Arabia Executive Council President

Vice President

Les Kirkham c/o Al Ain Women’s College Higher College of Technology PO Box 17258, Al Ain, AUAE leskirkham@gmail.com

Josephine “Jo” Kennedy Abu Dhabi Men's College (HCT) PO Box 25035 Abu Dhabi, UAE 02 404 8312 (office), 02 681 0026 (res) 050 317 7062 (mobile) josephine.kennedy@hct.ac.ae

Executive Secretary

Executive Treasurer

James McDonald Academic Bridge Program Zayed University Dubai, UAE 04 402 1371 (office) james.mcdonald@zu.ac.ae

Sufian Abu Rmaileh UAE University - UGRU PO Box 17172 Al Ain, UAE 03 706 4562 (res) 050 713 1803 (mobile) sabu-rmaileh@uaeu.ac.ae

Membership Secretary

SIG Coordinator

Les Kirkham c/o Al Ain Women’s College Higher College of Technology PO Box 17258, Al Ain, UAE leskirkham@gmail.com

Beth Wiens Zayed University PO Box 19282, Dubai, UAE 04 402 1350 (office) 04 402 1003 (fax) 050 4620566 (mobile) beth.wiens@zu.ac.ae

Conference Co-Chair

Member at Large / Conference Co-Chair

Les Kirkham c/o Al Ain Women’s College Higher College of Technology PO Box 17258, Al Ain, UAE leskirkham@gmail.com

Sandra Oddy Al Ain Women's College Higher Colleges of Technology P.O. Box 17258 Al Ain, UAE 03 709 5319 (office) Sandra.Oddy@hct.ac.ae

Co-Editors - Perspectives Rebecca Woll Abu Dhabi Men's College Higher Colleges of Technology P.O. Box 25035 Abu Dhabi, UAE rwoll@hct.ac.ae

Melanie Gobert Abu Dhabi Men's College-CERT Higher Colleges of Technology P.O. Box 25035 Abu Dhabi, UAE mgobert@hct.ac.ae

Past President

Conference Proceedings Editor

Beth Wiens Zayed University PO Box 19282, Dubai, UAE 04 402 1350 (office) 04 402 1003 (fax) 050 4620566 (mobile) beth.wiens@zu.ac.ae

Mashael Al-Hamly mashael2@hotmail.com

Publications Coordinator

Web Master

Mashael Al-Hamly mashael2@hotmail.com

Justin Shewell UAE University P.O. Box 17172 Al Ain, UAE 03 713 4465 (office) 03 767 2665 (fax) webmaster@tesolarabia.org

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2009 JAN  
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