This project was a collaboration between the University of Warwick and Dali University. The aim of the project was to develop a teaching module for Master of Education students studying to become teachers of English.
In this project, the project team collected data from current teachers about the issues they face in their teaching using a questionnaire and focus groups. They also surveyed current Master of Education students to get their views about their current curriculum and how they felt that it addressed their needs as future teachers. Finally, the team examined the current curricula for Master of Education programs for teachers of English to understand how the current curricula addressed students’ needs.
The project found that both existing teachers and student felt that they lacked sufficient pedagogical knowledge for delivering high quality English language teaching for their students. In particular, teachers and students felt that they had difficulty in translating theory into practice. The review of the current curricula revealed that much of the current teaching focused on general education topics, usually with a theoretical focus, and that the specific focus on English was restricted.
On the basis of findings, the project team designed a teaching module with a focus on pedagogy with an explicit connection between theories and classroom practice. As part of the project, they prepared a teachers’ guide for the module that outlines the main content for each week, gives suggestions for activities to help teacher education students connect theoretical ideas to practice, and suggests some ways of assessing that focus on practice as well as theory.
This programme is one of three key projects supporting pre- and in-service English teacher education in Yunnan province, supported by the British Council. The combined findings and outputs promise to have a significant impact on local teacher English teacher education and will contribute to the improved awareness and quality of teacher delivery while supporting more equitable and sustainable provision.