15th International TELLSI Conference

20 Monday November 2017  |  فارسی  |   |   | 
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 Pre-Conference Workshops and Professional Development Courses

  Creating Opportunities for Out-of-class Language Learning and Use

Presenter: Dr. Garold Murray (Okayama University, Japan)
(180 Minutes)

The purpose of this workshop is to explore possible solutions to one of the biggest problems faced by English language learners and educators in foreign language contexts: the lack of opportunities to use the language outside of the classroom. Based on developments in Japan over the past two decades, I suggest that one way to address this concern is to create social spaces for language learning, which integrate self-access materials and services. By social learning spaces, I mean places learners can come together in order to learn with and each other. The underlying premise is that through their interaction in these facilities learners can generate a wide variety of opportunities for language learning and use outside the classroom setting. The intended outcome is for administrators, teachers and policymakers to leave the workshop with not only a vision but a plan for an innovative facility designed to meet the needs of learners at their institution.

The workshop will begin with a brainstorming session in which the participants identify the needs of local and international students as well as those of workers and administrators. The workshop leader will then present a conceptual model for a social learning space in a university setting. Working in small groups, participants will explore how relevant components of this model might be adapted to suit their context. This will include discussing services and activities that could be offered in the new facility. Following their discussion, each group will draw a layout or floorplan for this space on which they indicate the various features they feel should be included. To conclude the workshop, the groups will share their vision for a social learning space by presenting their floorplans to the other participants and briefly outlining their ideas for activities and services to be offered. 

Teaching Language, Teaching Life Skills: Incorporating 21st Century Learning Skills in Language Teaching

Presenter: Prof. Mehdi Riazi (Macquarie University, Australia)

In this professional development course, I’ll firstly introduce and discuss the concept of 21st-century skills, what they encompass and why they are important to consider. I will then discuss what it means to be a language teacher in terms of the required knowledge bases and skills. The third part of the course will include ways of incorporating some of the 21st–century skills in a coherent model of teaching, learning, and assessment. I will argue that some traditional (conventional) concepts such as “assessment of learning” (AoL) need to be reconceptualised into “assessment for learning” (AfL) in line with more recent approaches to teaching and learning.
 The course will be interactive in that participants will reflect on their teaching and learning experiences and how they think the 21st-century skills might work for them. 

Testing Listening Comprehension Workshop

Presenter: Dr. Ardeshir Geranpayeh (University of Cambridge, UK)
(90 Minutes)

This workshop will help every teacher in what they need to know about test of Listening Comprehension. Our aim in this short interactive session is to answer some questions about listening comprehension. We will look at what listening comprehension is, and how it’s different fr0m other skills. We will also think about what a listener actually needs to do when they’re listening, which helps us understand the complexity of this skill for English language learners. We will focus on how to think about assessing listening, how we can test a learner’s listening comprehension ability and what makes a listening comprehension question, or item, easy or difficult. 

Item Banking and Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) Workshop

  Presenter: Dr. Ardeshir Geranpayeh (University of Cambridge, UK)
(90 Minutes)

This workshop is suitable for advanced students of language testing with some IRT and statistical knowledge. We will talk about item banking as a practical application of Latent Trait Theory, it is seen as a preferred qualitative approach to test construction. We will look at its use to better understand the skill we are testing, to construct tests of the right level and profile of difficulty, to grade exams applying comparable standards across sessions, to make comparisons across exam levels and to administer tests in new ways, for example, computer adaptive testing (CAT). The latter will be explained in much more details as an application of item banking for test construction. We will explain how a CAT would work,the items in the test are ed, in turn fr0m an item bank, so as to adapt to the level of ability demonstrated by the learner\'s responses. We hope that the participants will get an overview of the importance of item banking in test construction as well as familiarity with CAT.


 Structural Equation Modeling with SmartPLS: Basic Concepts and Applications in Applied Linguistics

     Presenter: Hessameddin Ghanbar (Islamic Azad University, West Tehran Branch) 

 Structural equation modeling (SEM) is a powerful multivariate technique in statistics which is becoming increasingly popular in Applied Linguistics. In this workshop, SmartPLS, one of the most versatile and the newest programs for SEM will be introduced. SmartPLS using Partial Least Squares (PLS) can work efficiently and flexibly with many models’ setups. Moreover, it works quite efficiently with small sample sizes, non-normal distributions of the data, and different measurement scales. It should be mentioned that SmartPLS can handle single-item constructs which is not possible in any other traditional statistical packages. With regard to the model complexity, it can be said that SmartPLS can estimate very complex models with a large number of structural relationships. Finally, one of the most innovative features of SmartPLS which cannot be seen in any other packages is evaluating formative and reflective constructs which is very useful in exploratory factor analysis of different questionnaires in Applied Linguistics.

Reflectionism in ELT

 Presenter: Jaber Kamali (Allame Tabataba\'i University) 

In the post-method era in which methods should be used to fulfill students, teachers, and policy makers’ needs, reflection plays a significant role; and reflective teaching as one of its offspring is in the limelight. Numerous references in this concept are made which emphasize the importance of its practice in L2 classrooms and raise a need for acquiring the reflection skill by each single practitioner.

To this end, this workshop intends, firstly, to discuss widely the importance of reflection by giving the definitions and its types e.g. reflection-in-action and reflection-on-action, self and peer reflection and etc. Secondly, it will continue by describing the investigation tools such as questionnaires, observations, video recording, and so on – a hand-out of these tools is prepared and will be distributed in the session. The third part of this workshop will deal with the culture of reflection. To evaluate the effectiveness of it, the presentation will end by a focused video of a real classroom participants have the opportunity to work with different kinds of reflection procedures such as questionnaires, five-minute papers, dialogue journals, and so on, and then a discussion will be held regarding the above-mentioned video.

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