Archives for March 2016

‘Critical Appraisal of ELT in ESP/EAP Programs’ by Elham Tavakoli, Anita Lashkarian & MohammadReza Mozayan

Abstract

This study makes an attempt to introductorily differentiate between theory and practice in ESP/EAP and General English courses and illuminates some less-paid-attention-to facts connected to it. Later the difference between these courses is posed in terms of needs analysis and the concept of learner-centeredness in these programs. The connection between Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) and ESP/EAP courses is also discussed in length. The study then tries to see rather deeply into the perspectives of some prominent as well as other Iranian researchers about the history and the existing status of ESP/EAP programs in Iran both before and after the Islamic Revolution. A brief reference to the evaluation of these programs as well the as the materials used in these courses is also made. In the end, the study appraises the shortcomings of these programs and then suggestions are made so as to ameliorate the condition.

Index terms: communicative language teaching, ESP/EAP, general English, needs analysis, theory and practice

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‘Evaluation of Iranian TEFL M.A. Program in Terms of Compatibility with Common Standards: Teachers’ Perspectives’ by Neda Taheri & Gholamreza Abbasian

Abstract

The main purpose of this study was to evaluate the alignment of Iranian TEFL Master of Arts Program with standards of a conventional educational program from the teachers’ perspectives, and the extent to which their expectations are met. To this purpose, two separate and validated questionnaires one addressing the Program compatibility with common standards along with a number of open-ended questions and the other measuring the Program and its Course features were used. The data were collected from four universities in Tehran, in which the program is still implemented. Quantitative data analyses primarily based on frequency and chi-square analyses revealed that the educational Program is mainly aligned with the determined standards and it meets the teachers’ needs in a sense that the participants positively evaluated both macro dimensions.  However, based on the qualitative data analyses, a number of insightful points were explored suggesting 1) inclusion of Teaching English for Children and Adults Courses, 2) revising Advanced Writing Course, 3) removal of  Contrastive Linguistics/  Error Analysis and Sociolinguistics courses, 4) inclusion of internet technology, 5)  modifying the manner courses are practically rendered, 6) evaluating the learners’ through the teachers’ comments, 7) hiring good quality teachers, and 8) focussing on research-based education.

Index Terms: program evaluation, TEFL program, program standards.

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