Continuing professional development handbook for managers
'Going forward: Managing the Continuing Professional Development of English Language Teachers in the UK' provides information and guidance on how to develop a culture and system of continuing professional development in your learning centre. It uses a CPD framework that helps teachers to identify the stage of career they are currently at and to plan their development relevant to their needs at that stage.
Watch a seminar with Mike Harrison and Phil Bird on online professional development: http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/seminars/online-cpd
Many organisations offer workshops for EL teachers. They’re a good way to stimulate your everyday teaching with new classroom ideas and reflection on practice. There are video seminars here:
Also check out the events calendars of local associations and providers, for example:
- EnglishUK at http://www.englishuk.com/
- NATESOL (Northern Association of TESOL) at http://natesol.org/
At certain stages of your career, taking a training course can help you make significant progress in your teaching. You can find out about teacher training courses on the EnglishUK website here:
You can also access teacher training modules here:
You may find that your career moves you in the direction of a particular ELT specialisation such as business English, or young learners, or CLIL. Find out more about how to develop specialist skills here:
Small-scale classroom action research can help you find out more about classroom processes and so develop your professional understanding and skills. Look at these links for more information:
The ability to reflect on your own practice is an essential skill for the teacher. Wjhat are your strengths? What do you need to develop in order to improve? Here are two articles showing you how you can develop your skills as a reflective practitioner:
Being observed and getting feedback from a trusted colleague can give you a fresh perspective on your teaching and help you identify areas you would like to develop. Look at these articles on how to make observation work for you:
Here are also two easy ideas for peer observation:
- ‘Blind observation’: If you’re not confident about someone sitting in your class, talk to a colleague about the lesson you are going to teach, and describe one or two areas you’d like to develop. The colleague does not observe your lesson, but afterwards you discuss the lesson and the areas of focus with your colleague.
- ‘Stealing’: You agree with a colleague to observe each other’s classes and look for ideas, activities or techniques to ‘steal.’ Afterwards discuss with your colleague what you would steal and why.
Learning from a more experienced colleague is an invaluable way to gain insight into teaching English – find such a colleague, observe them and talk to them about what works in English language teaching.
Similarly, if you are an experienced teacher, it is a good developmental activity to mentor a less experienced colleague. If you want to learn more about mentoring, read this book from Cambridge University Press: Mentor courses: a resource book for trainer-trainers by Angi Malderez and Caroline Bodóczky
Professional associations offer a range of activities for your development, including conferences, journals, special interest groups, research activities and projects. The national organisation for all teachers of English is IATEFL. The association has a number of special interest groups (SIGs) on specific areas of ELT:
There are also other professional bodies for specific areas of ELT: