NATESOL 25th Anniversary Conference 
MMU Didsbury Campus: 13th June 2009
Summary of presentations given on the day. 
With thanks to our sponsors: The British Council, Macmillan, Cambridge University Press, Longman Publishing and Oxford University Press.

Peter Grundy University of Northumbria                                       
Pragmatics and ELT: a silver wedding, I don't think. 

Most of us think of ourselves as communicative language teachers more interested in the use of language than in language itself. In this plenary, I  want to explore the use of language more carefully than is perhaps usual, taking a cue from the discipline that first appeared on our radar one year before NATESOL (sorry, but that's the way it is), with the publication in 1983 of Stephen Levinson's Pragmatics. 

I'll begin by drawing attention to the kinds of language phenomena that Pragmatics has tried to explain, including speech acts, which, I will argue, have been used by materials writers to keep the 'as
a foreign' in EFL and hence to disadvantage language learners. I'll try to show that we need to think more carefully about the proper subject matter of
Pragmatics, i.e. the relationship of language and context, now that English has become a deterritorialized lingua franca. 

Liam Brown :The British Council
Equal Opportunity and Diversity in ELT – the British Council approach. (Sponsored by The British Council )

Demonstrating a willingness and commitment to discuss, understand and promote equality of opportunity and valuing, managing and promoting diversity in the ELT staffroom and classroom context are significant challenges for the industry but have never been more important. Finding
space for discussion and others to share in this commitment can be equally challenging.

The British Council’s English and Exams division is working on a range of activities and projects to demonstrate its leadership and commitment to EO&D across the organisation. These fit squarely with the British Council
World Authority in ELT values, and bring together significant people and process resources from across a global professional network. Working also with industry partners, in particular from IATEFL and academic contexts, we have received guidance, support and direction from experts as we bring
change and some innovation to our approach to EO+D.  

This paper describes those approaches and -

  • an understanding of what we mean by EO+D the status ofand commitment to EO&D issues in the ELT sector
  • the style, direction and impact of British Council initiatives
  • how the sector can maintain momentum in mainstreaming EO&D, reach
  • wider audiences and identify new resources and initiatives

Janet Golding Trinity College London
Trinity’s ESOL for Work Qualifications: the first 2 years. 
Sponsored by Trinity College London

Triniy’s ESOL for Work examinations were launched in September 2007. This session will provide you with an overview of these examinations as well as an update of the qualifications so far. We will also look closely at particular tasks from the speaking and listening and reading and writing units to help you
gain a greater awareness of what examiners are looking for and how to prepare candidates effectively.

Janet Golding is the ESOL Development Manager for UK and Ireland at Trinity College London. Having been an ESOL and EFL teacher and trainer working in both private and public sectors in UK and Europe for over 20 years, 

Janet is now developing the market for Trinity’s International Esol assessments, including the newly launched SEW examinations and also for Trinity’s UK ESOL suites of examinations including ESOL for Work.

Matt Yallop 
The latest generation of ELT dictionaries – what’s new? 
Sponsored by Pearson Longman

Thomas Longman published Johnson's epoch-making "Dictionary of the English Language" in 1755. Unsurprisingly dictionaries have changed beyond almost all recognition with many new features like word frequency, phonetic symbols, verb tables and so on. What has stayed the same though is the fact that a good dictionary helps youexpand your vocabulary with clear definitions and good examples of word usage. This session will look at the newest generation of ELT dictionaries and in particular the DVD-Rom resources that can attempt to wean your students away from simple translation to improved fluency. All attendees will receive a copy of the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English 5th Edition. This is not a bribe!

Matt Yallop read Linguistics and TESOL at University and also has a CELTA. He has taught EFL in Prague and ESOL in Wolverhampton for 7 years. After teaching Matt was employed by Pearson Longman to specialise in EAL, ESOL and EAP, and has been working for them for the last 3 years.  

Pete Sharma -  Oxford Brookes University
Technology in ELT: past, present and future.
Sponsored by Macmillan 

This session is in three parts. First, it looks back, and describes key developments in CALL (computer-assisted language learning). Secondly, it provides a snap-shot of the use technology in ELT today, a mixed picture which includes controversies, the digital divide and the emerging ‘new pedagogies’. Finally, it will make a number of predictions on the future of e-learning, which is always rather dangerous in an area as swift-moving as technology! The session will include a range of practical teaching ideas.

Pete Sharma is an associate lecturer at and works on the pre-sessional EAP courses at Warwick University. He is a Director of Pete Sharma Associates, which runs workshops and seminars in educational technology:

Philida Schellekens

Language in the vocational and work context.

The ELT sector has seen major development in the last 25 years. We have a better understanding of language learning and awareness of the importance of the context in which learners learn. In this session we focus on an area that attracts much attention in the world of ELT, including ESOL: language in the work and vocational training context. We review the characteristics of this type of language teaching and consider the similarities and differences between the vocationally-specific and general ELT syllabus.

Dr Philida Schellekens is an independent consultant,researcher and teacher trainer in the field of language learning andteaching, particularly English for migrants and refugees. 

More widely, she provides consulting in EFL, foreign languages, interpreting and translation, and the communication skills of first language English speakers.

NATESOL would also like to thank all those who participated on the day. 

Conferences such as these provide an ideal opportunity for exchanges of views and ideas. The interplay between organisers, speakers and audience served to make a good day into something great.

So a big thank-you the the audience for their participation, the speakers for their valued contributions and our sponsors for their continuing support and book displays on the day.

NATESOL looks forward to seeing you at events over the coming academic year.



Peter Grundy has worked in schools in UK and Germany, in initial teacher training, and in higher education in UK and Hong Kong. 

His interests are in language teaching methodology and in pragmatics. An IATEFL past president, he's also author or co-author of several resource books for language teachers (Beginners, Beginning to Write, Language through Literature, Newspapers, Writing for Study Purposes) and of Doing Pragmatics (Hodder, 3rd edn 2008). 

He's currently working on a Pragmatics Reader together with Dawn Archer. 


We will take some final moments of the presentation to review together the recently launched British Council Handbook of EO+D for Teachers which each audience member will receive. Time will also be set aside for Q+A.

Liam Brown is Training and Development Manager for the British Council English + Exams division, based in London. He is a manager, trainer and facilitator with experience of working in Asia, Europe and Africa. 

He writes and speaks on human resource issues, workplace communication and performance management skills. He has most recently formulated the IATEFL Conference Signature Event Debate on EO+D, commissioned the First BC Symposium on EO+D and the Handbook of EO+D for Teachers.



In addition to this, Janet provides extensive support to EFL and ESOL teaching staff preparing candidates at Trinity’s registered examination centres across UK and Ireland.


He commissioned the popular ESOL support materials for Cutting Edge that are available through the Pearson Longman website.

At the moment he is working with many schools and colleges to improve teachers use of technology in the classroom and is especially interested in interactive whiteboards, learner managements systems and other ways technology can help (or hinder!) the EFL teacher. 


Pete is currently Newsletter Editor for the CALL Review (IATEFL Learning Technologies SIG). He is co-author of Blended Learning (Macmillan) and writes the business English ‘e-lesson’ for in company (Macmillan). His next book as co-author is on Networking in English (forthcoming, January 2010). See also: 

Philida is an associate inspector in adult and further education and teaches English part-time. 

Recent publications: The Oxford ESOL Handbook (2007) OUP; The Learner Language Materials Pack (2008) EQUAL-Works; and Language in Construction (2004) CITB. 

 NATESOL Chair, Mike Beaumont presents Jane Cabot with an offer she cannot refuse!


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