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The E-Teacher Scholarship Program
 

Deadline: July 25, 2010

The Office of English Language Programs at the State Department announces the seventh offering of its acclaimed E-Teacher courses that train foreign English language professionals in the latest U.S. methods of English language teaching via distance education. Participation is open to teachers worldwide.

Seven 10-week courses will be offered in the fall of 2010 and the winter, spring, and summer of 2011, though not all seven courses will be offered each term. Tuition and materials will be paid by the State Department. Out of all E-Teacher course participants, 26 will be selected to attend a three-week professional development workshop in the U.S. in the summer of 2011.

Application Procedure

To apply for E-Teacher Scholarship Program please send the following materials to Ms. Masa Crnjakovic at crnjakovicm@state.gov by July 25, 2010:

  • Current CV in English
  • Application form (PDF 26kb) (including in it - a letter of motivation and a detailed proposal of follow-up activities)

Program Description

The E-Teacher Scholarship Program is designed to improve the quality of English language teaching throughout the world. Participants are English teaching professionals who receive instruction in the most recent English language teaching methods and techniques, while also being introduced to American educational values. Participants use innovative distance learning technology to interact with U.S. experts.

Participants

Candidates for E-Teacher scholarships should be teacher trainers or teachers who are working, or plan to work, with one of the seven subjects covered by the courses. They should be highly motivated individuals who are dedicated both to their own professional development and to sharing the knowledge gained with colleagues through workshops or professional presentations. Candidates should also be committed to fulfilling the program requirements (dedicating on average 8-10 hours of work per week) and completing the course. In addition, candidates should meet criteria described below.

Criteria

English Language Skills

  • ability to do academic work at a U.S. university (an advanced level of reading and writing, roughly equivalent to a minimum TOEFL score of 550 or IBT score of 79-80)
  • general understanding of technical terms in English relating to computers and the Internet;
  • good command of the necessary vocabulary for the topic of the course for which the candidate is nominated.

Computer Fundamentals

  • regular access to e-mail and the Internet;
  • ability to navigate in Windows or other appropriate programs and create a Word document;
  • basic familiarity with the Internet and web browsers;
  • ability to type in English well enough to perform online tasks in real-time and to submit written assignments in a timely manner.

Please note that preference will be given to those who have strong community involvement and have not participated in U.S. Government or E-Teacher programs in the past.

Costs

Participant costs are covered by the State Department. This includes tuition and the costs of any course materials sent from the institution, including CD-ROMs and books, for each participant.

Course materials will include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • downloadable or posted syllabi, assignments, an course readings;
  • asynchronous contact between instructors and participants, between other experts and participants, and among participants;
  • lectures via real-time, text, or audio-enhanced text;
  • use of a bulletin board to post notes, assignments, feedback, etc.;
  • information on additional web-based resources;
  • State Department resources for English teachers.

All materials will emphasize a learner-centered approach and will be in English. When possible, courses will integrate appropriate Department of State materials, such as "English Teaching Forum" articles and "Shaping the Way We Teach English."

Participants who successfully complete the course will receive a certificate of participation directly from the course providers.

Course Descriptions

Detailed one-page course descriptions are available for downloading in Word or Adobe PDF format for each of the seven courses from the Office of English Language Program's website, located at http://exchanges.state.gov/englishteaching/eteacher.html

Critical Thinking in the EFL (English as a Foreign Language) Curriculum (offered by University of Oregon, Linguistics/American English Institute)

This course is designed to deepen participants' understanding of the theory and applied use of Critical Thinking principles and practices in the EFL classroom by engaging in the following types of activities:

  1. read and discuss professional information and articles to develop a deeper understanding of current topics in language pedagogy as they relate to general critical thinking skills,
  2. identify, evaluate, and select web-based materials and tools for use in the classroom,
  3. interact with colleagues regionally and internationally who share similar pedagogical interests,
  4. create classroom materials and projects that demonstrate an understanding of course topics, and
  5. adapt and enhance existing materials so that they are culturally and age appropriate for their schools' local curriculum.

Teaching English to Young Learners (TEYL) (offered by University of Maryland, Baltimore County, English Language Center)

This course is designed to introduce participants to the theory and practice of teaching young learners in the EFL classroom. The course will investigate approaches for teaching language within a meaningful context as well as the different techniques for making language input more comprehensible and encouraging student participation. Participants will look at the major principles that govern language teaching based on all of the four skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Building Teaching Skills through the Interactive Web (offered by University of Oregon, Linguistics/American English Institute)

This course is designed to deepen participants' understanding of the theory and applied use of CALL (computer assisted language learning) principles in the EFL classroom. This course strives to:

  1. model innovative online teaching practices,
  2. improve understanding of and actively engage in the analysis and systematic adoption of innovative materials and tools for ELT (English Language Teaching),
  3. offer opportunities for EFL educators to observe and analyze real-world application of such new materials and practices,
  4. provide educators with support and problem-solving mechanisms as they implement new materials and practices in their teaching, and
  5. act as a train-the-trainer model so that participants can move forward with concrete dissemination plans.

English for Specific Purposes (ESP) Best Practices (offered by University of Oregon, Linguistics/American English Institute

This course is designed to develop participants' knowledge, skills and attitudes toward designing, implementing and evaluating ESP (English for Specific Purposes) courses based on best practices in the field. Because the foundation of this course is in best practices, new and experienced ESP practitioners are welcome from all areas of the field. Teachers could be addressing the needs of pre-experience learners (preparing to enter a specific discourse community) who need English for Specific Academic Purposes (ESAP) at universities, or who need Vocational English for Specific Purposes (VESP) at vocational and technical secondary schools. Other teachers/trainers at private language schools or in university ESP departments may be targeting English for Occupational Purposes (EOP) courses in the business sector, intended for experienced learners already in the workplace who need English as a tool for their job. The course will address the need for training in English for Specific Purposes to promote education and economic development at the local and national levels.

English as a Foreign Language Assessment (offered by University of Maryland, Baltimore County, English Language Center)

This course is designed to introduce the participants to the theory and practice of foreign language assessment and testing. Participants will learn about the differences between assessment and testing, and how they can be used to make effective decisions to support teaching and learning. They will learn important concepts to consider when developing assessment and tests, such as validity, reliability, and practicality, as well as different kinds of assessments and tests (formative, summative, diagnostic, proficiency, achievement, product-oriented, process-oriented, alternate assessments). They will develop skills to assess ESL/EFL learner's performance in all four skill areas and content areas. They will learn to develop test specifications, develop items, analyze and edit items, and put together a final assessment instrument that is reliable, valid, and useful. They will gain experience developing rubrics to assist with grading and scoring and make the assessment process transparent to all stakeholders.

Methods Course I: Survey of Best Practices in TESOL (Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (offered by University of Maryland, Baltimore County, English Language Center)

This course is designed to provide participants with current methodologies associated with teaching English language learners (ELLs) of different ages in various learning contexts. Participants will discuss and practice a wide variety of strategies and techniques for teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL). While exploring best practices for teaching listening, speaking, reading, writing, grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation, participants will learn how to create an effective and communicative language classroom for all ELLs. In addition, participants will examine what best practices means in the context of teaching English in the 21st century, where English is an international language and how the use of English incorporates modern technologies.

Methods Course II: Developing EFL Literacy through Project-Based Learning (offered by University of Oregon, Linguistics/American English Institute)

Using a 'reality TV-style' modified case studies approach, participants will observe one or more real world language classes at regular intervals over an extended period of time.  Video crews will visit pre-selected classes on a weekly basis over the course of a term and capture classroom events as they unfold in a naturalistic 'telling-of-stores' manner. These will be classes which focus on developing ESOL literacy (reading-writing-grammar) using and integrated skills approach and which incorporate aspects of content-based instruction and project-based learning (PBL). Participants will have many opportunities for focused and contrastive analysis of classroom practices in the videos, with ongoing guidance in developing appropriate application of observed techniques in their local EFL teaching environments. New, real-time classroom video footage will be available each week to log, in chronological order, the unfolding drama of these learning events (classroom stories) on the YouTube-UO web site: http://www.youtube.com/uoregon.

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