Schedule, Teachers' Day 2022


11 October 2022

Teachers' Day kicks off with the Keynote presentation on 11 October 2022. The workshops will follow as one round of concurrent sessions. Registration deadline: 30 Sept. 2022

08:45: WELCOMEProf. Dr. Joachim Frenk of the Saarland University English Department; Dr. Tina Hellenthal-Schorr, Vizepräsidentin für Lehre und Studium; and Jan Benedyczuk, Staatssekretär für Bildung und Kultur im Saarland
09:15: 1st KEYNOTEKeynote:

Dr Alex Baratta. World Englishes in English Language Teaching


While standard inner-circle English is often seen as the standard for EFL teaching, there are of course many varieties of English within all three circles. These varieties serve their speakers perfectly well for everyday communication, displaying a predictable grammar and lexis. However, Englishes which fall outside the inner-circle standard, including even inner-circle dialects, are often viewed in negative terms within society. Such negative attitudes can reflect beliefs that dialects are failed attempts to master the standard variety, with non-inner circle Englishes – the expanding circle more so – simply viewed as ‘incorrect’, even embarrassing to the country’s reputation (e.g. Singapore’s Speak Good English campaign). However, from a purely linguistic – and not societal – point of view, all Englishes are indeed legitimate, with no variety inherently ‘better’ than another.

In a spirit of linguistic equality, I argue that World Englishes have a role to play in the EFL classroom, reflective of much current research and literature. While this is hardly an original insight, the presentation nonetheless places itself within a more egalitarian approach to language overall, in terms of the ways in which we understand language use and functions, and linguistic codification.

This presentation argues that linguistic codification is established by the speakers of a language variety in the first instance, further reinforced by additional societal means of codification, such as web-based dictionaries compiled by individuals, and public signage. While this variety of web-based dictionary and non-inner circle Englishes are both regarded in negative terms, compared with, say, the Oxford English Dictionary and inner-circle standard, this presentation argues how both are indeed legitimate. As such, they have a role to play in the teaching of EFL.

Even when inner-circle standard is the variety focused on, then non-inner circle varieties can still play a part in the EFL classroom and as such, reveal how all varieties of English, which might be used by our EFL students, are indeed correct. Further, linguistic codification is no longer tied to traditional means such as print dictionaries and textbooks, which are compiled by a relative minority. Instead, a language variety’s status rests with its speakers, and as the EFL classroom needs to prepare students for the real-world of English, it stands to reason that all varieties of English, most of which are actually spoken beyond the inner-circle, need to be incorporated..

WORKSHOPS(concurrent workshops)
11:15: Workshop ADr. Alex Baratta. The use of online dictionaries to house expanding circle Englishes: Is there a place for either in the EFL classroom?

This workshop will discuss web-based/online dictionaries, reflecting a more modern means of compiling the vocabulary of a given language variety. When applied to non-inner circle Englishes, the expanding circle in particular, it is often the case that the vocabulary of such Englishes is indeed housed within online dictionaries in the first instance. However, there are three issues, with Korean English under discussion as a linguistic stand-in for expanding circle Englishes.

First, the status of online dictionaries has been questioned based on not necessarily being compiled by professional lexicographers. Second, they are argued to be of dubious quality, given clams regarding incorrect information. Finally, non-inner circle Englishes are often marginalised, based on lexis and grammar which diverges from prestigious English varieties such as the inner-circle standard (e.g. Korean English use of Burberry to mean ‘trench coat’). However, the reality is that many individuals, be they teachers or language enthusiasts, are nonetheless behind the creation of many online dictionaries, a modern means to help codify a language variety which otherwise might not get a lot of respect. These online dictionaries, however, can help people to appreciate expanding circle Englishes, and the online means to house them, precisely because they can help to reveal the systematic features of such Englishes, which in turn demonstrates their use in society. Online dictionaries also reflect a more democratic approach to dictionaries, one that need not be limited to prestigious publishing houses. Further, individuals responsible for creating Korean English online dictionaries have accurate knowledge, as they are users of Korean English, and are often EFL teachers in Korea who seek to educate people regarding this variety. Finally, all varieties of English conform to a systematic use of lexis and grammar, which serves its speakers well, regardless of circle.

The aim of this workshop is to address societal attitudes, both positive and negative, that are held toward non-inner circle Englishes and online dictionaries, to further discuss how such dictionaries coupled with expanding circle Englishes might have a potential role to play in the EFL classroom. Examples will be provided of online dictionaries dedicated to Korean English, and we will discuss the potential use of such within EFL pedagogy, arguably reflective of a more modern, and realistic, means to teach English.

11:15: Workshop BChris Bunyan. Multicultural British English and World Englishes’ Influence on ‘Standard’ British Pronunciation

RP is dead! Standard Southern English (SSE) is in battle. Will Multicultural British English (MBE) emerge victorious as the dominant variety in the United Kingdom of the future? Over many decades, the migration of ‘Inner’ and ‘Outer Circle’ speakers of World Englishes to the UK has influenced the varieties of English spoken there, not least Multicultural London English (MLE). MLE has established itself as a force to be reckoned with, and its influence is spreading far wider than the capital’s urban city centre, leading to the term Multicultural British English (MBE). Indeed, it has recently been predicted that a variety of MBE will become the dominant paradigm in the UK within 100 years. Giving a general background to MLE and MBE, and with a focus on phonology and receptive understanding, this session will help you prepare yourself and your students for the next century!

11:15: Workshop CEleonora Pessina. Assessing English proficiency for international working environments (WORKSHOP C HAS BEEN CANCELED)


11:15: Workshop DSylvia Loh. Glimpses of the English Speaking world: A hands-on approach to teaching postcolonial experiences in the high school English classroom

The workshop focuses on ways of teaching about the impact of Britain's colonial past on some of her former colonies. Visible traces of British influence in language, politics and culture in Nigeria, Singapore and Ireland will be explored as well as the difficult social and political realities of these postcolonial societies. A variety of texts and materials will be presented to make students aware of the various perspectives needed to understand the complex web of living in a postcolonial global world.

11:15: Workshop EMina Patel. The future of English for teachers; have your say!

This workshop provides an opportunity for participants to reflect on their roles as English language teachers at a time when teaching and learning has changed considerably. As we reflect on our practice, it would be cognizant to think about two important factors that impact classroom practice; our learners and their perceptions of learning and teaching and the English language itself and whether any changes in its use in other domains has had an impact on classroom practice.

During the workshop, participants will be invited to share reflections and opinions about current classroom teaching and learning practice in light of the recent Covid Pandemic but also have an opportunity to think about the future and what it holds for them as practitioners.

Using the Comprehensive Learning System (O’Sullivan, 2021) as a framework, the workshop will explore the notion of the classroom from the teachers’ and learners’ perspective and within these conceptualisations, participants will reflect on and share insights and opinions particularly on methodology, materials and motivation.

11:15: Workshop FPaul Dennis. English with and without culture
 English … many would say an essential requirement for study, research, technology and business. But there are countless varieties of English which can often hinder understanding in everyday communication. Is teaching a basic, non-idiomatic variety of English devoid of cultural expression what is needed in the English classroom?
12:45: Lunch 
14:00: 2nd KEYNOTEKeynote:

Mina Patel. The future of English: implications for teachers


We are living through a period where the pace of change seems relentless. This changing world has implications for the use and the teaching of the English language.

Change creates opportunities. Opportunities to reflect, to be in the moment and also to think about the future. I will briefly reflect on where I think we were before the onset of the Covid Pandemic and where we possibly find ourselves now. Then, importantly, I will suggest implications for English language teachers to think about as we move forward into a world where the education space and the stakeholders have changed. To frame my presentation, I will present progress and findings to date of a project initiated by the British Council in 2020.

The Future of English (FoE) is a multi-phase research project with the aim of identifying key trends that will define the role of English as a global language in the coming decade, and the issues and opportunities for countries around the world in achieving their goals for the use of English in their contexts. This is not the first time work has been done on trying to forsee the future direction of the English language and its role in teaching and learning. Existing studies (Graddol, 1997 and 2006) have been reviewed and findings from these reviews from the basis of the Future of English project.

Teachers and learners have been at the forefront of discussion and debate as education systems have attempted to navigate new learning environments to ensure the continued provision of high-quality, effective teaching and learning. This presentation will discuss findings from Phase 2 of the project, where we organised over 14 round-tables with leading experts from 49 countries, and which illuminate the role of the English teacher in a world that has recently seen dramatic change and disruption.

15:15: COFFEE BREAK, RAFFLE, AND FAREWELLJoin us in the Aula for the chance to win great prizes.

Location: Saarland University, Aula (+ workshops in separate rooms)

Book exhibition on site in the Aula during the course of the event

Photos taken at Teachers' Day


Please be aware of the fact that we will take a handful of pictures during the event, and that a selection will be posted on our website. For the most part, participants will appear in these photos as "Beiwerk," that is, not as the specific focus of the image but rather as relatively nameless members of the event masses. Participants can retroactively request that an image in which they appear be removed.

Teachers' Day Team