Category Archives: TEFL/TESL, Applied Linguistics

Tips for getting started in academics: Presenting at a language teachers’ conference

I’m hosting the English Scholars Beyond Borders 2018 conference at the University of Toyama in March 2018, and as part of promoting the event, I emailed a short announcement to the mailing list for one of the MA programs I work on part-time as a tutor. One of my former students wrote back almost immediately saying he didn’t know where to get started and was confused by some of the terminology in my message. Rather than reply to just one person, I realized this may be an issue for more than one person, and so I decided to put up a post with information about applying to give an academic presentation so it hopefully helps more than just this one student.

Keep in mind that what I write below is generally specific to my field, language teaching and applied linguistics. It likely applies generally to presenting within the social sciences, but different fields have different expectations, so you may want to double check some of what I say. I’ve also tried to keep the discussion pretty general; if you have a specific question, I would recommend asking someone you know who is versed in your particular circumstances.

First things first, I want to start with the question of why present at all?

Why do an academic presentation?

Excellent question. I’m glad I asked it. I’m based in Japan, so most of my information is Japan-centric, but I think that the general principles apply in a variety of different higher education teaching contexts worldwide.

The uplifting, glass is half full answer, is that giving a presentation improves your abilities as a researcher and helps to connect you to colleagues who are potentially interested in similar themes, developing your professional network and helping you to access additional opportunities. For example, in my PhD research I’ve analyzed the text histories of six published papers. All six include a conference presentation at some point in their history. Some are conference proceedings papers, and so in order to be published in a proceedings, they needed to be presented. But even the high prestige international journal publications include presentations in their trajectories. Not only do those manuscripts include publication, but the authors feel as if presenting their work was key to ultimately successfully publishing it in the prestigious publication of their choice.

Authors also benefited in ways that went beyond publishing the specific manuscripts I analyzed; they were able to learn about and take advantage of book chapter and book review publishing opportunities outside of the specific manuscripts whose trajectories I analyzed.

Presenting your work can also help you to improve it. Because you are able to share your ideas and get feedback in a (hopefully) supportive environment. It can also help to drive research forward; knowing you have to present your research could give you the impetus you need to complete a particularly difficult data analysis. That was the case for one of the papers’ trajectories I analyzed; one author shared that, had he not had to present his results, he didn’t think he would have completed analyzing  the data.

The glass is half empty answer is that if you are going to be looking for teaching work in the higher education sector in Japan, there is an expectation that even part timers, and especially full timers, are active in their academic fields. In the case of language teaching or applied linguistics, this means attending and presenting at conferences, in addition to writing for publication. So if you are looking to work in the sector, this is going to be something you’re expected to do, particularly to qualify for teaching positions.

A debate can be had about how ‘academic’ such positions are; many tend to be primarily teaching, with a bit of research expected on the side, but the reality is that hiring committees will be looking for evidence of some academic participation in conferences and publishing. What does this look like in hiring documents? Here’s the requirements for one such part-time listing:

(2 publications minimum are required)

I’ve purposely not included the name of the university because it’s not particularly important; this is a general expectation across the board at many institutions. Does this mean you can’t get a university teaching job without such qualifications? Certainly not, but having academic presentations and publications will help to open more doors than not having such achievements on your record.

Presenting can open the door to publishing in conference proceedings, and can also help to link you to people aware of other potential publishing opportunities.

How do I get started doing an academic presentation?

I’m going to write specifically about presenting for a conference here. This is not the only option for presenting; many language teaching societies have local chapters that hold regular meetings. They are often eager to find interested, interesting presenters for their local events. These presentations tend to be invited, though, and so may be difficult for someone just getting started to gain access to.

In contrast to invitation-only local society presentations, conferences tend to hold open calls for papers. These invite people interested in presenting at the conference to submit a proposal in the form of an abstract that is then generally evaluated in some way by the conference committee and a decision is made whether to accept the proposal and invite the speaker to present at the conference.

One such call for proposals, from the ESBB 2018 conference I’m organizing for March 2018, has been included below:

Call for Presentation Proposals

While the conference theme is English Beyond Borders, our intention is always to embrace the global along with the local, including supporting teachers grappling with local EFL/ESL issues. We are keen to hear from presenters wishing to discuss a very local issue. You can also download our call for papers as a PDF.

Our conferences explore the diverse kinds of borders and boundaries that English teachers and scholars must negotiate to achieve success and benefit learners.

We invite papers on the following themes:

  • Research related to English language teaching and learning at the college or university level
  • General research related to English language teaching and learning, TEFL/TESL, and TESOL
  • English for research publication purposes
  • Studies which critically investigate academic publishing from the perspectives of authors, reviewers/editors, and Open Access;
  • Multilingual scholars in study and publication
  • Non-blind dialogic review
  • Multi/bilingual issues in language learning and linguistics
  • EAP/ESP across borders
  • English literature across borders
  • CLIL (Content and Language Integrated learning)/EMI (English Medium Instruction)
  • Study abroad and International exchange
  • Interdisciplinary issues in TESOL
  • Encouraging (cultural) diversity in voice and agency
  • New directions in critical thinking and reasoning
  • Using technology to cross borders
  • Corpora in language teaching and research
  • Migrants and refugees in language learning

Papers are invited on any aspect of the above themes. English is the working language of our conferences, although we are eager to incorporate as broad a range of speakers as possible, so if you are interested in using a language other than English to present, please contact the local conference organizers.

Proposals should include brief biodata, a 50-75 word abstract and a one page summary of approximately 300 words. Please submit your manuscripts through our online conference management system.

The call above is a bit long because ESBB is a general circle of academics, not really organized around one particular specialty. However, the general gist should be similar across conferences. There is a statement of the academic interests and themes that are being solicited, along with specific instructions for what should be submitted, in this case “brief biodata, a 50-75 word abstract and a one page summary of approximately 300 words”. A presentation title is also expected, but this is not stated explicitly in the call.

Unpacking the request, the one page summary of 300 words is likely to be evaluated by the conference committee to make a decision about whether to accept the proposal for inclusion in the conference. In the case of ESBB, we’re more interested in inclusiveness than exclusivity, so if there’s some problem with a proposal, we’re more likely to request revisions than we are to reject it outright. Not all conferences function this way, though; particularly prestigious conferences can reject as many as 80 to 90 percent of the proposals they receive.

The shorter summary is likely to be printed in the conference handbook (it’s cheaper than printing the full abstract). Bio data means some information about the presenter’s academic biography and research experience and/or interests. This may be included along with the presentation abstract information in the conference program. I’ve included mine as an example below:

Theron Muller is an Associate Professor at the University of Toyama, Japan. He is lead editor on two book projects, Innovating EFL Teaching in Asia (2012) and Exploring EFL Fluency in Asia (2014), both published with Palgrave Macmillan. He is active with JALT Publications and the Asian ESP Journal. He is a member of English Scholars Beyond Borders.

That may not help someone relatively new to academic presenting, so as a bonus, here’s my biodata from 2005 (I’m a digital pack rat):

Theron Muller, an American, is co-owner of Noah Learning Center, a small English school in Nagano, Japan. He teaches students of all ages and levels, including various college classes. His email is

Hopefully if you’ve read this far into my post, you’re familiar with what an abstract is and while you may not have a lot of experience writing one, I trust you are generally familiar with their basic form. One thing to keep in mind is that for the kind of conference above, you can write a ‘prospective’ abstract; you may not have finished all of the research and have clear findings to share at the time you submit your proposal. An abstract like this could begin:

This presentation will describe an investigation into …

What kind of presentations are there?

The cookie cutter academic presentation is a 20 minute short presentation followed by some question and answer time. This is the kind you typically apply to give at a conference.

Conferences may also invite poster presentations. These are generally printed on A1 or A0 paper, and the presenter is asked to stand at their poster for a certain amount of time during the conference. Conference attendees circulate and talk to presenters in small groups or one on one. These are generally less competitive than a short presentation in terms of the review process, and are an excellent way to ‘break into’ academic presenting or to share data from a project that you feel isn’t quite ready for a longer presentation slot. Please don’t conclude, though, that these are exclusively given by people new to presenting; many experienced presenters may prefer to give a poster presentation at a given conference for any number of reasons. Also, sometimes conferences that are overbooked with short presentations offer presenters a poster presentation slot rather than rejecting the proposal outright.

Keep in mind the information above is field specific; in medicine, generally the kind of presentation is determined by the quality of the abstract. I’ve had doctors whose abstracts I’ve edited request that I make their abstract good enough to get accepted for a poster presentation, but not so good that they have to give a short presentation about their topic!

How much does it cost?

Generally you will be expected to pay a registration fee to attend and present at a conference. These are typically the same fees that someone who wants to attend but not present at the conference would pay. This is the case with the ESBB 2018 conference above. Some academic societies charge presenters more than regular attendees, so you may want to double check this in advance.

Costs can vary wildly. 30,000 JPY or $300 US for a weekend conference is not out of the question, although generally conferences in Japan are cheaper than that. Some conferences may include meals in their fees and others, such as ESBB 2018, may charge separately for conference attendance and meal options.

If cost is an issue, I would recommend looking out for scholarship and conference fee waiver opportunities. Many societies offer these, and they give you two merits on your academic record; you can claim having won some award if you get one, and you can also list the presentation you give as an academic achievement.

Are all academic conferences the same?

This is an important point; no. Some conferences expect you to submit your full paper before the conference. Others, like the ESBB conference cited above, allow you to present your research first, then they have a call for conference proceedings papers following the conference. Usually if a conference is going to ask for your paper before the event, it’s clearly stated in their call. My experience is that in language teaching the majority of conferences follow the ESBB conference pattern above; I have yet to present at a conference where I have to submit my presentation paper ahead of time, although I have friends who have done so.

Sometimes conferences may refer to their call for presentation proposals as ‘paper proposals’. While I have been to conferences where a presenter literally reads their paper to the audience, I would encourage you to develop a presentation that engages your audience and worry about the actual academic paper later. Reading an actual paper really is as boring as it sounds, no matter how interesting the topic being discussed.

Another point that I should raise here is that, surprise surprise, academia has its unscrupulous actors as well. If you see a conference advertising that you can spend a week in Vegas as part of an event, it’s very likely a money making scheme for the organizer and will have very little in the way of academic value. I wouldn’t go so far as to call all of these conferences scams, because they usually are held and there are presentations given, but their academic quality is generally very low, and the presenters pay a small fortune to attend and present. My recommendation is to stick to conferences put on by academic societies such as JALT, JACET, JASELE, KOTESOL, and KATE, to name a few. ESBB is another conference I would recommend.

Finally, after you present a paper, you’re likely to get emails saying some journal has heard of your interesting research and would like to invite you to submit a paper to their publication. These are academic spam at best and academic scams at worst. I would recommend publishing in the conference’s Proceedings if there is one, or asking colleagues about what publications they may recommend. I’ve been writing for academic publication since 2004 and I’ve only published one paper in that time where I had to pay publication fees. That was for a Japanese language teaching society’s conference proceedings journal, and was definitely less than about 20,000 JPY, or $200 US. Be wary of any journal that reviews a paper you send them within a week, saying it’s excellent and ready for publication. Paying exorbitant fees to publish a paper that is reviewed within a matter of days as ‘excellent’ and not requiring any changes is likely to not help your academic career in the end.

That’s all, folks

I hope the information I’ve included here helps. If you think I missed something, please let me know. Also, if you have an unanswered question, you’re welcome to ask.

An update on using videos in the language classroom

Not distracting vs. Distracting classroom behavior
Not distracting vs. Distracting classroom behavior

I originally wrote about my use of videos in my language classroom teaching here. However, with a new semester came a new challenge. With last year’s first year students, I was sharing personal stories based on Tim Murphey’s split storytelling technique. As these are Pharmaceutical Science students, from this year I wanted to go from more general interest stories to projects that were more science-based, continuing to use the principles of dividing the stories into two parts, but basing those stories on published scientific research reports. Ultimately I’m hoping to have students select their own articles to turn into video projects, but as it’s only the third week of the semester, we’re still at the beginning stages of this process. The first project I had them do was based on a research article that I selected and explained in class, then asked them to adapt into a video. I quickly realized that much scientific research can be divided into a setup of the methods of the research and an explanation of possible outcomes as part 1, and that students can suggest their own hypotheses regarding what they think the results will be. Then in part 2 I can explain the actual results of the research and students can see whether their predictions came true or not.

Well, the groups I assigned finished their part 1 videos in class today, based on Sana, Weston, and Cepeda’s article titled ‘Laptop multitasking hinders classroom learning for both users and nearby peers’. I would explain the research, but I was astounded at the excellent job one of the groups of students did summarizing the gist of the research as I explained it to them, and so I’ll let them do the rest of the talking for me:

I’m really looking forward to seeing how the remainder of the semester turns out regarding this teaching experiment.

What’s your opinion of my students’ video? Do you have any suggestions for further improving the activity? Feel free to share your ideas and reactions in the comments.

English Scholars Beyond Borders upcoming conference in Izmir, Turkey

It’s been nice to see the English Scholars Beyond Borders group slowly taking off. After two successful conferences, they are going to have a Symposium in Izmir, Turkey, the site of their first inaugural conference, which I was honored to present a plenary at. The upcoming symposium is December 2015. I unfortunately can’t make it this time, but am looking forward to attending their May 2016 conference in Taiwan. Details of both conferences are here.


The following conference looks like it could be quite interesting, and an excellent excuse to get to Switzerland at the same time. It’s a bit outside of my subspecialty, but much writing for academic publication is submitted, reviewed, and revised digitally these days, and so could be potentially relevant to the conference theme.

AILA-Europe and VALS-ASLA welcome you to the 7th Junior Researchers Meeting in Applied Linguistics

10th–12th September 2015

Hosted by the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland

The Junior Researchers Meeting allows early career applied linguists to present their research and network in an interactive and informal international environment. “Junior Researchers” include those working on their Master’s and PhD theses, as well as those who have graduated within the last three years.

At the conference, each paper session will have designated senior researchers as commentators to guarantee questions and discussion. The programme will also include workshops on various aspects of academic career, such as publishing and seeking for funding.

The conference focuses on language use in digital environments within and across educational, academic, professional and everyday settings. Besides this conference focus, papers on other areas of applied linguistics are welcome. A paper may present also work in progress.

Please submit your abstract of no more than 350 words (excluding the title) to:

Plenary speakers

Prof. Dr. Troy Hicks, Central Michigan University, USA
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Chistina Gitsaki, Zayed University Dubai, UAE
Prof. Dr. Daniel Perrin, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland
Prof. Dr. Wibke Weber, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland

Important dates

Submission closes March 30, 2015
Notification of acceptance: May 30, 2015
Early bird registration: July 30, 2015
Final registration: August 30, 2015

Conference venue

ZHAW Zurich University of Applied Sciences
School of Applied Linguistics
Theaterstrasse 15c, P.O. Box
8401 Winterthur

The city and region of Winterthur is an independent and dynamic center in the Zurich economic area with a population of around 180,000. Over 75,000 people are employed in one of more than 7,500 firms and enterprises. Winterthur is also home to the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), which is one of Switzerland’s largest multi-disciplinary universities of applied sciences and has turned Winterthur into a vibrant university town.

Organising committee

Prof. Dr. Daniel Perrin
Dr. Aleksandra Gnach
Deborah Harzenmoser

Book chapter on student agency in medical ESP due out December

I have a chapter coming out in Theorizing and Analyzing Agency in Second Language Learning: Interdisciplinary Approaches, edited by Ping Deters, Xuesong Gao, Elizabeth R. Miller, and Gergana Vitanova titled ‘Critical Discourse Analysis in a Medical English Course: Examining Learner Agency through Student Written Reflections’. I’ve shared my abstract for the chapter on my page, but here I wanted to talk in a less formal way about what I was trying to accomplish with writing the chapter.

When I started as Associate Professor at the University of Toyama October 2011, one of the classes I was looking forward to teaching was the Medical English class for third year students majoring in medicine. While I enjoy teaching all levels of students and appreciate the opportunity to work across three different degree programs, the Medical English students are on track to become medical doctors, which means I can use more challenging material with them. After more than ten years of teaching in Japan, I felt I was relatively comfortable with how to go about teaching my other classes, and believed that this course in particular would have the potential to challenge me as a teacher.

And challenge me it did. The first semester was a total disaster, for a variety of reasons, but most of all because it was my first time teaching the class, and since I didn’t know what was in store for me going into it, I decided to follow the class plan my predecessor had used, which was a presentation syllabus, where the students’ work culminated at the end of the course in presenting some medical topic of interest to them. Unfortunately, by the end of our time together, no one appeared happy with how the class had went, including me. And I was faced with the dilemma that I was going to have some of the same students to teach again in the following spring semester.

So I knew I needed to come up with something that would wow these already unhappy students and which I would be able to apply successfully in my future classes. Going over what had gone wrong, and trying to think around the factors that had been out of my control, I decided that part of the problem was I had expected too much, too soon, from the students, and that given the freedom to excel many had decided to take that opportunity to underachieve. This isn’t a particularly uncommon problem in classrooms in general, and is certainly a phenomenon I’m used to encountering in Japanese English classrooms.

Thus what I needed was to narrow the scope of what I was teaching, and narrow the aim of the tasks I was asking my students to complete, so that there were clearer markers of success, and so my expectations regarding for their work were clearer. But more than that, I needed a lever with which to pry away their expectations based on their negative experience of our previous course and its failures so that I could get their attention early and make sure that our second course together didn’t fail before it had even started. I concluded that meant I needed to teach something I know better than them, so that I could act as the expert in that subject area in order to rebuild some of the respect lost in their experience of my first class. I also needed some external validation of my abilities as a teacher, someone to show them that I really am competent at what I do.

Thankfully, that particular year my father was visiting Japan. Since he’s an oral surgeon, he came with some of his models and slides (as in real slides from before the age of PowerPoint and digital projectors) and gave a presentation about the different kind of surgeries oral surgeons do, and the lifestyle benefits these have for patients. This earned me some points with the students by association, especially because they happened to be taking an oral surgery intensive course at the same time, and so what my father said reinforced what they were learning in another lesson. I also invited a former student from Nagano Chuo Hospital, where I had taught an English class for doctors once a week for a few years. He gave a presentation in English that he had presented as a poster at an international conference. Dr. Kojima started by telling the students what a good teacher I was, which gained me some more credibility in their eyes. I didn’t even ask him to say that, so it was a bit of a magical moment for me. He talked about Endoscopy, his speciality, and it was obvious that the students were impressed I understood the content of his presentation better than they did. It helped that I had given him feedback on his presentation and edited his slides several years before, but they didn’t need to know that part.

Nevertheless, while these two presentations won me some points with my students, I still had to teach the rest of the course, and so I needed something that  I could teach. I decided that since I’m trained in language and analysis of conversation and discourse, that I would play to my strengths, so I went to the literature on doctor patient discourse looking for papers that highlighted some issues in medical communication that I could take advantage of in my class. Thankfully I found three papers that I was particularly happy with, as they had actual extracts of conversations which I could use in the classroom, and so I got the students to go through the process of analyzing discourse from the bottom up, starting them with the text extracts from the papers, and asking them what was going on in the conversations. Then we could go to the published papers from which the extracts were pulled and consider what the authors had to say about them.

That course wowed the students, and so when I had the new fall group that same year, I refined what I had done a bit, but was happy with the template I had established. I wrote about the evolution of the course to this point in more academic language for the IATEFL ESP SIG Journal, Professional and Academic English. If you’re interested, you can download the PDF from

The course assignments included in-class work and reflective reports students were expected to write for homework, and it was those reflective reports I turned to in order to examine how successful my students thought the classes were. While the majority of the reports showed that the students ‘got it’ in the sense that they were thinking critically about the language used between the doctors and patients in the examples I was sharing in class, there were a small minority of students who appeared to have trouble with the course contents as I looked at their reports. They seemed to be missing the point of the course, or bringing their own expectations of what the class should be with them, and so their expectations appeared to cloud what we were actually covering and discussing.

I wanted to unpack those outlier reflections a bit more and examine what was going on with those students, and I thought a chapter in Theorizing and Analyzing Agency in Second Language Learning would be an excellent space in which to do that. So my chapter uses ‘critical incidents’ as theoretical lens through which to examine how those students reacted and adapted to the course as it unfolded. Looking in more detail at what some selected students had written was very encouraging—it appeared that even with students who struggled at first, there was some learning going on, although perhaps not as much as with the more successful students, but I’ll take some evidence for learning over no evidence any day.

Looking forward, I can see a bigger project would be to examine all of the students’ writing, using some coding schema, but that will have to wait until I’ve finished my PhD, so for now I’ll have to be content with what I’ve found from this smaller scale investigation of students who appeared to have problems in the course.

JALT LD SIG Conference Tokyo, December 14

The JALT LD SIG is planning a small conference in Tokyo for December 14. Details follow:

We hope you’ve been having a great summer wherever you are. We’d like to share with you news about the small informal conference that the SIG is holding on Sunday December 14 – Building Community: Learning Together

The conference is open for students and teachers to take part in, and the main presentation format for the afternoon involves poster presentations and/or digital displays, within the very broad theme of Building Community: Learning Together. There will be spaces for extended discussions too. You can find further details about this special event here. We very much hope you’ll be interested in taking part and can also encourage your students to participate. 

To that end, we warmly invite proposals from students and teachers interested in sharing their collaborative work on the theme of “Creating Community: Learning Together”. To register as a presenter and to submit a proposal, please complete the Call for Proposals form here. The online registration and the Call for Proposals deadline period runs from October 12 to October 19 2014. 

「コミュニティの創造:共に学ぶ」: 一日間のインフォーマルな学習者ディベロプメントSIGの 学会, 12月14日(日), 大妻女子大学, 東京,市ヶ谷) 「コミュニティの創造:共に学ぶ」は12月14日(日)に大妻女子大学(東京,市ヶ谷)で開催され ます、一日間のインフォーマルな学習者ディベロプメントSIGの 学会です。私たちは「コミュニティの創造:共に学ぶ」というこのテーマで、ご自身の研究を共有することに関心のある学生や教員の方々からの申し込みを募集 しております。申し込みの受付は2014年10月19日までになります。参加者間での双方向の活動や議論を促進するため、当学会における多くのプレゼン テーションはデジタル・ディスプレイ、もしくはポスター・プレゼンテーションで行う予定です。数に限りはありますが、フォーマルな形でのプレゼンテーショ ンを行う場所もございます。申し込みを行うには以下のURLをクリックし、フォームへの記入を行ってください。参加者の皆様にお会いできるのを楽しみにしております。

Best wishes

Andy Barfield, Fumiko Murase, Ken Ikeda, & Stacey Vye
LD SIG December mini-conference organizing team

PS  For more information and get-together reports, please visit

CamTESOL 2015 Call for Proposals

CamTESOL is a conference I’ve wanted to attend for a while. It will have to wait until after 2015 for me, but here’s their call for papers in case someone else is interested:

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Friday 22 August, 2014
Call for Papers: Main Conference
Deadline in Three Weeks’ Time

The CamTESOL Secretariat invites all those working in the field of English Language Teaching (ELT), or those who have an interest in this field to submit an abstract for the 11th Annual CamTESOL Conference on English Language Teaching, English: Building Skills for Regional Cooperation and Mobility, 28 February – 01 March, 2015.

Deadline for Abstract Submission: 13 September, 2014

Notification re. Abstraction Selection: 18 October, 2014

All abstracts submitted should relate to the following conference streams:

•   Curriculum and Materials Development •   Publishers’ Stream
•   EAP & ESP •   Research-based Stream
•   ELT in the Mekong •   Teaching Speaking
•   Grammar •   Teaching Listening
•   Independent Learning •   Teaching Reading
•   Language Policy •   Teaching Writing
•   Methodology •   Teaching Young Learners
•   Motivation •   Testing
•   Professional Development •   Using Technology
•   Program Management •   Vocabulary

To submit your abstract, please click here.


  • In conjunction with the Main Conference, we also invite all researchers, including those preparing doctoral theses, those working in the field of language-related areas, and those who have an interest in this field, to submit an abstract for the Regional Research Symposium (27 February, 2015) with the focus on promoting language research in the region. To submit your abstract to the Regional Research Symposium, please click here.
  • In order to present at the Regional Research Symposium, presenters will need to register for both the Main Conference and the Regional Research Symposium itself.
  • If presenters wish to present at both events, two separate Call for Papers submissions will need to be completed; one for the Main Conference and one for the Regional Research Symposium.
  • The deadlines for full paper submissions to be considered for the peer-reviewed LEiA publication are08 March 2015 for Volume 6, Issue 1 and 07 June, 2015 for Volume 6, Issue 2. For more information, please click here.
For any enquiries, please email

Mr. CHEA Theara
CamTESOL Conference Program Coordinator
Join us at the 11th CamTESOL Conference on 28 February – 01 March 2015.
For more information, go to

The CamTESOL Conference Series is an initiative of IDP Education

Copyright © 2014 C/o IDP Education (Cambodia),
All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:

C/o IDP Education (Cambodia)

#657, Kampuchea Krom Blvd
Khan Toul Kork

Phnom Penh PO BOX 860


Add us to your address book

Symposium on Second Language Writing, November 13-15, 2014 USA, deadline June 1 2014

I’ve been to the Symposium on Second Language Writing twice, and am considering going again this year. Their call for presentation proposals is below.

Call for Proposals

The 13th Symposium on Second Language Writing
“Professionalizing Second Language Writing”
November 13-15, 2014
Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA

The 2013 Symposium Organizing Committee seeks proposals for 20-minute presentations that address various topics within the field of L2 writing—broadly defined.

Any topic related to second language writing theory, research, or teaching is welcome; we especially encourage proposals that seek to challenge the status quo in the field by introducing new topics as well as new theoretical and methodological approaches.

As with all previous Symposium iterations, we are interested in L2 writing issues in any second or foreign language for any age groups in personal, academic, professional and civic contexts. Given the theme of the Symposium, we particularly encourage proposals that address issues of second language writing as a profession.

Proposals must include both a 50-word summary and a 500-word abstract (including references). To submit your proposal, please use the online proposal submission form available at:

Proposals must be received by 23:59:59 on June 1, 2014 (Arizona Time; Mountain Standard Time; UTC-0700). Proposals will be peer reviewed by a panel of experts. Notification of acceptance will be sent out by July 30, 2014.

Multiple submissions are allowed, but the same person cannot be listed as the first author for more than one proposal. Once the proposal has been accepted, no additional presenters can be added.

For more information about SSLW 2014, please visit our website at:

We look forward to receiving your proposal!

Job Opportunity: English; Applied Linguistics; ESL: Fellow, US Department of State English Language Fellow Program, Worldwide

This looks like a really interesting opportunity to work abroad if you’re a US citizen and have some experience of teaching in the US. I just may apply myself someday:

Subject: English; Applied Linguistics; ESL: Fellow, US Department of State English Language Fellow Program, Worldwide
University or Organization: US Department of State English Language Fellow Program 
Job Location: Worldwide
Web Address:
Job Rank: Fellow

Specialty Areas: Applied Linguistics; ESL

Required Language(s): English (eng)


Interested in improving your skill set, developing professionally, and promoting mutual understanding all while teaching abroad for 10 months? 

The English Language (EL) Fellow Program promotes English language learning around the world and fosters mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries. The Program places highly qualified teachers in paid professional positions at projects initiated by U.S. embassies in all regions of the world. It is an opportunity for ESL teachers to enhance their professional career as they contribute to cross-cultural awareness throughout the world. Assignments are for a 10-month period typically beginning in September 2014. 

The EL Fellow Program is funded by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. As a program administrator, Georgetown University's Center for International Education and Development is recruiting applicants for approximately 100 positions for the 2014-2015 academic year. 

Please review the eligibility requirements before applying. More detailed information regarding eligibility is available at the application URL below. 

- U.S. Citizenship 
- Master’s in TESOL OR in a field related to English language teaching 
- Classroom ESL/EFL teaching experience 
- Personal qualities of patience, determination, flexibility, teamwork initiative and a love of adventure 

- Two years’ experience teaching ESL/EFL 
- One year experience training English language teachers and/or teacher trainers 
- A minimum of one year teaching in the U.S. education system (K-16 or adult education) 
- Demonstrated commitment to the field of English language teaching (e.g., membership in a TEFL/TESL professional organization; presentations at an EFL/ESL conference) 

Program benefits: 
- Stipend: $30,000 
- Living allowance (rent, utilities, local transportation) 
- Textbook and pre-departure allowances 
- Supplementary health benefit plan 
- Round trip airfare from the United States to the host country 

Complete on-line application dossier must contain the following: 
- Application 
- Résumé 
- Two 1-page lesson plans/teacher training modules 
- Statement of purpose (not to exceed 500 words) 
- Statement of personal qualities you will bring to the EL Fellow Program (250 words) 
- Two current reference letters 
- Graduate transcript

Application Deadline:  (Open until filled)
Web Address for Applications: 
Contact Information:
	Benjamin Perdue 

Courtesy of The Linguist List

New Association: The Learner Corpus Association (LCA)

There’s a new association for learner corpus research that may be of interest. Details follow.

The Learner Corpus Association (LCA) aims to provide a forum for exchanging ideas on learner corpus research from an interdisciplinary perspective: 
- Second language acquisition
- Foreign language teaching (including CALL)
- Language testing
- NLP applications (automated scoring, L1 identification, error detection and correction, etc.)
- Other language-related fields

The association was officially launched at the second Learner Corpus Research conference which took place in Bergen (Norway) on 27-29 September, 2013. 
The LCA maintains a dedicated website and initiates a bi-yearly conference. You can access the LCA website at the following URL:

Registered members will have access to the members-only sections of the website which will contain a range of resources, including shared corpora, publications and corpus tools and a regularly updated searchable learner corpus bibliography. They will also be able to take part in forums focused on a range of topics (learner corpus design, annotation, methodology, applications, etc.) and benefit from discounts, notably from publishers, negotiated by the LCA. 

Registration is now open at Registered members will be able to take part in the election of the Executive Board due to take place in early December. 
If you want to help us shape the association and contribute to its success, don't hesitate to join us! 

Gaëtanelle Gilquin, Sylviane Granger, Fanny Meunier & Magali Paquot 
Founding Members of the Association