Elgazette Logo newtrans  The magazine for English language teaching and English medium education

Point of View: Beware the pong of debunked theories


Much education research can be inaccessible from the classroom, but used effectively the good stuff can set you free, writes Carl Hendrick

The gap between education research and classroom practice is well documented and has led to calls for teachers to actively become researchers.

But there is, of course, a world of difference between doing research and using research. A champion Formula 1 driver doesn’t need to know the intimate workings of an engine in order to be a winner, any more than an engineer needs to know how to drive the car.

Read more ...

When reading is not as simple as...


Expecting all English language students to learn to read and spell in the same way as they do in their native language is misguided, writes Melanie Butler

We need to talk about spelling. It is, after all, the single most difficult thing about English, at least according to a survey of second-language speakers at Cambridge Assessment. They would agree with a comment I saw on social media recently: ‘English is a simple language with a simple grammar and a psychotic spelling system.’

Read more ...

Culture clash

crowdedplace Hamza Buttweb

It’s easy to make the wrong assumptions about students’ native learning cultures, says Melanie Butler, because it’s a lot more complex than ‘East meets West’.

Culture is ‘the collective programming of the mind’. So says the Dutch social psychologist Geert Hofstede whose ground-breaking work on national and corporate cultures famously analyses culture across six separate areas.

Read more ...

‘‘I worry about all the military metaphors that circulate when grammar is discussed’’

Ronald Carterweb

ELTons lifetime achievement award winner Ronald Carter, emeritus professor of modern English language at Nottingham University, tells Claudia Civinini his thoughts on the battle for grammar in schools, the impact of social media on language and the need for multi-disciplinary studies.

Read more ...

Out of the box: It’s time UK ELT had a sip of the PM’s Dom Perignon


Whilst flicking through the papers last month, I noticed that the movers and shakers of the British fashion industry had once more got a taste of the Downing Street Champagne.

As London Fashion Week got under way, Theresa May hosted dozens of top designers, fashion house execs and rising talents at Number Ten. This followed a tradition started by previous incumbents Sarah Brown and Samantha Cameron.

Read more ...