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I bring to my work at Massey University a wealth of experience as a teacher of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) which impacts strongly on my teaching and research in the university. The practical and varied classroom experience of teaching English and working with second language learners informs my work on the Master in Applied Linguistics programme, with its strong focus on taching and learning languages. My interest in and experience of second language learners and their endeavours to engage in the complexities of study and everyday life, has provided a basis for my own research, including my PhD thesis, 'Expectations, emerging issues and change for Chinese international students in a New Zealand university', which won the Applied Linguisics Association of New Zealand award for the best NZ thesis in Applied Linguistics in 2008. It also contributes to my role as a supervisor of postgraduate research in our Applied Linguistics suite of qualifications.
I am part of a resarch team allied to the Massey University / Beijing Language and Culture University Joint Research Centre in Applied Linguistics, which has a focus on one-to-one video-conferencing in the distance teaching of the Chinese langauge. In that capacity I draw on my experiences as a long-time language learner, and in particular beginner level learner of Chinese.
I maintain an active presence in the TESOL profession, through membership of TESOLANZ (Teachers of ESOL Aoteaora New Zealand). I volunteer at a local level for English Language Part ners as a tutor trainer, and at a national level have an advisory and consultation role. I am secretary of the Applied Linguistics Association of New Zealand (ALANZ). I co-edited the journal of that organisation, New Zealand Studies in Applied Linguistics, from 2006 to 2012, and am now an editorial assistant for it. I have been involved in the organisation of conferences for both TESOLANZ (Convenor of CLESOL 2012) and ALANZ.
I joined Massey University in 2002 after many years of TESOL (teaching English to speakers of other languages) in a range of settings -- private language school, polytechnic, community -- in Britain, New Zealand and China. My research has centred mainly on aspects of the presence of international students in the university, from the perspectives of teachers and students. In recent years I have added research into the distance learning of Chinese as part of a team from Massey and Beijing Language and Culture Universities. In community settings I continue to work extensively with English Language Partners nationally and locally,
identity and agency in learning and using a second language
Teachers of international students
Writing for academic purposes for ESOL students
English language learning in community settings
Distance teaching and learning of Chinese
Video-conferencing in language learning and teaching
one-to-one language learning and teaching
My research has been qualitative in nature, and in most cases longitudinal.
21st Century Citizenship
Field of research codes
Curriculum and Pedagogy (130200): Education (130000): LOTE, ESL and TESOL Curriculum and Pedagogy (excl. Maori) (130207)
Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
TESOL Teacher education
University teachers of international students
Second Language Learning
Learning English in community settings
Distance language teaching
Project Title: Academic practice to support international students at Massey University
Date Range: 2013 - 2013
Funding Body: Massey University
I began my teaching career with an intensely practical Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language from International House, UK, one of the precursors to the current Cambridge Certificate. This was followed up with enrolment in the Diploma of Second Language Teaching from Massey University, a qualification which, in its current evolution as the Postgraduate Diploma in Applied Linguistics, I now teach on. My TESOL teaching has been in a wide range of contexts, from large classes in a traditional Chinese university, to private English language centre and polytechnic classes, one-to-one tuition, English language suppor,t and English for Academic Purposes for ESOL leatners at university level. Since 2002, I have added distance teaching and Linguistics classes at Massey University to my repertoire.
All in all, this ensures that the teaching I provide for the students on our qualifications is practical, informed by understandings of educational theories, and driven by a socio-constructivist approach, seeking to involve students actively in the process of their learning. It also means that I have insight into most of the contexts that the second language teachers on our Postgraduate Diploma and Master of Applied Linguistics courses are reflecting on in their assignments. I therefore provide feedback which recognises the logistical realities of those contexts as well as the concurrent desire to strive to meet the highest possible standards. My role as facilitator of one of the Teaching and Learning Circles which Massey University staff can voluntarily join over a period of several years is testament to my deep interest in the teaching process, my intent to maintain excellence as a teacher on my own behalf, and my desire to particiapte in a process of peer support for colleagues.
I bring the same approach to my work as a supervisor, working hard to provide support to students developing skills in a very new area.