As a part of the English Language Center professional development annual plan, The ELC at Salalah College of Technology will hold a one-day seminar on Monday, April 10, 2017, on “Improving Teaching Quality” at Salalah Rotana Resort.
The first seminar aims to provide an opportunity for academicians and professionals in the Dhofar region from various educational fields with cross-disciplinary interests to bridge the knowledge and skill gap, to promote research, and to increase awareness of pedagogical trends.
For more information about the seminar visit https://www.sct.edu.om/web/index.php/elc-seminar
|8:00am||Registration - Front Desk|
|8:30am||Opening ceremony and recitation of the Holy Quran|
|9:00am||Welcome address by:
Mr. Saeed Al-Mashiki
Head, English Language Center and Seminar Chairperson
Salalah College of Technology
|9:10am||Recognition of the Keynote Speaker, the Paper Presenters, and the Moderators|
|9:20am||Keynote address by
Dr. Victoria Tuzlokova
Centre for Preparatory Studies
Sultan Qaboos University
Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
The skills required for 21st century training in higher education institutions in Oman: Helping students realize their highest potential in relation to the job market
|10:20am||Paper presentation by
Mr. Faical Ben Khalifa
Director, Foundation Program
Emotional intelligence in the classroom: Strategizing classroom delivery
|10:50am||Paper presentation by
Mr. Marwan Alyafi
Lecturer and Assessment Coordinator of English Department
College of Applied Sciences, Salalah
Types of motivation among college Omani students at English foundation level: Which one has the upper hand?
|11:20am||Tea / coffee break|
|11:30am||Paper presentation by
Mr. Jamel Eddine Al Akremi
English Language Lecturer
Salalah College of Technology
Taking advantage of the pre-reading activities provided in L2 cycle 2 basic education text-books in Oman to facilitate learners’ comprehension
|12:00pm||Paper presentation by
Mr. Mokshanand Gandrapu English for Specific Purposes Teacher
Salalah Nursing Institute
Integrating 21st century technology in our classroom
|12:30pm||Paper presentation by
Ms. Dalenda Zghidi English Instructor
Salalah Fisherman Training Institute
Raising learners’ awareness of the importance of critical thinking
Dr. Khalid Al-Mashikhi (Moderator) Assistant Dean of College of Arts and Applied Sciences
Best teaching practices
Dr. Rais Attamimi (Moderator)
Post-Foundation Coordinator of English Language Center
Salalah College of Technology
L2 Motivational Factors: Common Characteristics and Implications for EFL Teachers
Bio of the Keynote Speaker
Victoria Tuzlukova has a PhD in Comparative Linguistics from Moscow State University. She is currently on the English faculty of the Centre for Preparatory Studies at Sultan Qaboos University. Victoria is a co-editor of General Foundation Programmes in Higher Education in the Sultanate of Oman: Experiences, Challenges and Considerations for the Future (2013), Language, Learning and Teaching (2011), The Omani ELT Symphony: Maintaining Linguistic and Socio-Cultural Equilibrium (2010), Language of Professional Communication in Focus of Linguistics and Cultural Studies (2009), and ESP and Technology in Oman. Special Issue of Journal of Teaching English for Specific and Academic Purposes (2016). Victoria has participated in a number of large scale projects in Oman. Her forthcoming publications are on skills training and community-based projects in English language teaching and learning.
Abstract of the Keynote Speech
This keynote speech addresses the need to ensure that higher education in Oman is suitably adapted to equip students with effective skills, which are regarded as key requirements for a successful professional career in the 21st century, and draw attention to the importance of these skills. More specifically, it involves the audience in careful examination of how the English language classroom can be facilitated and suitably adapted to equip students with 21st century skills and focuses on quality pedagogy, motivating strategies and pedagogical conditions necessary for building and extending students’ skills through English language learning.
Paper 1: Emotional Intelligence in the Classroom: Strategizing Classroom Delivery
Studies have shown that emotional intelligence (EI) could improve students’ emotional learning and academic performance. Research indicates that emotional skills are inextricably associated with success, hence the need to strategize EI in class. The presenter will describe the strategies that will help build momentum and bolster success in the classroom.
Over the last two decades, emotional intelligence (EI) has come a long way to prove its efficiency in many fields. Statistical and anecdotal evidence has shown that once utilized in the classroom, EI could impact both teaching and learning and yield astonishing results in developing students’ academic performance (Durlak et al., 2011). The question remains why this is not part of everyday practice in the classroom. This presentation shows not only how important EI is in the classroom but also goes a step further into showing how this could be implemented by demonstrating strategies and techniques that can readily be mastered and implemented. Keeping EI away from academics is a disservice to both educators and students, hence the need to enlighten the former and maximize the full potential of the latter.
Mr. Faical Ben Khalifa has been in the field of education since 1997. He is currently the Director of the Foundation Program in Dhofar University and the FP Quality Assurance Chair. He is also a translator, a certified trainer in Human Development, a member of the Arab Trainers Union and a member of the International Academy of Personal Training and Leadership Development.
Paper 2: Types of motivation among college Omani students at English foundation level: Which one has the upper hand?
Much research has been carried out in order to address the different motivational factors, or variables, that students have for learning a second language. Based on research findings to this date, three factors have been identified, and these are described as intrinsic, extrinsic and instrumental. It has been argued that if a student has a motivation to learn a language, he or she will likely learn more than a student who lacks motivation to learn.
This argument sounds logical. However, does it rise to the level of an observable fact? If yes, which type of motivation leads to better qualitative or quantitative language achievement? In this research, I have aimed to find out the correlation between beginning level students’ type of observed motivation and their achievement level in the English language by the end of semester. Over 200 students have been chosen as a sample to complete a 7- point Likert scale questionnaire ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree. In these questionnaires, there are fifteen statements; five questions used to measure the three known motivational factors. A correlational method is used to show any significance between students’ achievement and type of motivation.
Mr. Marwan Alyafai is an English language teacher and educator with a teaching experience of over 20 years. He is currently working at Salalah College of Applied Sciences. His fields of interests are Threshold Concepts, quality of knowledge at the tertiary level, teacher education and learning-driven motivation. Meanwhile, he is about to complete his Ed.D degree (Doctorate of Education) at Durham University, UK.
Paper 3: Taking advantage of the pre-reading activities provided in L2 cycle 2 basic education textbooks in Oman to facilitate learners’ comprehension
The primary objective of the study was to investigate how ESL teachers of C2 Basic Education took advantage of the pre-reading activities available in C2 BE textbooks and teachers’ books to facilitate their learners’ comprehension. To this end, a sequential mixed methods design was employed in two phases. First, three units of each of 7th, 8th and 9th Grades of C2 BE were evaluated in order to find out whether there were enough instructional pre-reading activities. Second, ten ESL teachers of C2 BE were observed with a main focus on the pre-reading stage, and how they took advantage of the pre-reading activities provided in the prescribed textbooks. Third, follow-up semi-structured interviews were conducted with those teachers being observed to get insight into their attitudes about the impact and importance of the pre-reading activities and whether these attitudes conform to what they actually did in class. Finally, a closed-ended questionnaire was administered to 60 male ESL teachers of C2 BE to probe further into their attitudes to the effect of pre-reading activities and the activation of background knowledge on reading comprehension. As a whole, the findings of the study revealed that there was a strong agreement of the important role of schema theory-based pre-reading activities and the activation of prior knowledge in promoting L2 learners’ comprehension. Taking into account of the findings reported in this study, some implications for ESL teachers as well as in-service training for teachers of C2 BE are suggested.
Mr. Jamel Eddine Al AKremi is currently a lecturer at Salalah College of Technology. He received an MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of Sunderland, UK. He also obtained a CELTA Certificate. He has taught English to ESL and EFL learners for nearly two decades. He has worked as a regional supervisor in the Department of Human Resources Development, Directorate General of Education from 2009 to 2014. His fields of interest encompass research methods in teaching, assessment and curriculum design.
Paper 4: Integration of 21st Century Technology into the Classroom
In these technologically advanced times, it is quite difficult to imagine a world that does not have the Internet, or cellphones, or smartboards, or i-Pads, or any other iconic inventions and devices that have become indispensable to living and maintaining a contemporary lifestyle. Our homes, offices, transportation systems, communications and educational institutions are intricately built and sustained by technology. At the same time, many phrases have emerged into our day-to-day language, such as ‘google it,’ ‘text in,’ ‘tweet & re-tweet,’ ‘blog & blogger’ and so on. So, it’s not surprising that many of students are very much adept at using mobile devices such as ‘i-Pads, i-Pods, smartphones and other mobile devices.’ They, too, are the prolific users of these ingenious technological tools and social media. Even though technology is the crux of our lives, it doesn’t seem to be yet possible to tap into this giant area of potential and integrate it into the English classroom to enlighten, to enrich and to enhance the teaching and learning process and experience.
Mr. Mokshanand Gandrapu has been a teacher of English over two decades starting from the secondary level and ranging to the tertiary levels of education. After a 13-year stint with the Ministry of Education, Oman, he has worked at the Salalah Nursing Insitute, which is administered by the Omani Ministry of Health, serving as an ESP teacher since 2011. Improving and consolidating vocabulary through reading and writing has been his primary interest
Paper 5: Raising learners’ awareness of the importance of critical thinking
Scholars in education are keen on improve the teaching quality in every scholastic institution. This paper, entitled “The Importance of Critical Thinking”, can be introduced within this context with its primary focus on finding out ways on which learners’ critical thinking may be enhanced and facilitated. Its main focus is to highlight the importance of critical thinking and how it helps to develop a system of thinking that goes beyond the traditional rote learning and encourages higher-order thinking.
Within the scope of this topic, the following research questions are addressed:
- What is critical thinking? (Bloom’s Taxonomy)
- What are the characteristics of critical thinkers?
- Why is it important to foster critical thinking?
Samples of classroom activities that promote critical thinking are introduced.
Critical thinking helps to create skilled thinkers able to understand, apply, analyze, evaluate and create the optimal conditions to become successful learners to be ready for life. In addition to reviewing the theoretical side, this paper will provide some critical thinking activities. The audience will be invited to practise these activities in a classroom-like setting.
Ms. Dalenda Zghidi is originally from Tunisia, lecturing on English language courses at Salalah Fisherman Training Institute. She has participated in several different presentations and workshops, among them the Forest 5 workshop in 2006, entitled “Everyday One Word,” another seminar at Sultan Qaboos University entitled “Teaching Through Drama” in 2007, a PFP Needs Analysis at the College of Tourism in Muscat in November of 2013. Her interests have shifted to work ethics and team building.
Dr. Khalid Al-Mashikhi
Dr. Khalid Al-Mashikhi is the Assistant Dean of the College of Arts and Applied Sciences at Dhofar University. Khalid received his MA and Ed. D in Education and Leadership from the University of Nebraska Omaha, the USA. His teaching and research interests include leadership, teaching and learning.
Dr. Rais Attamimi
Dr. Rais Attamimi currently lectures in English Language at Salalah College of Technology. Previously, he taught EFL at Aden and Hadramout Universities in Yemen. His Doctorate from the Malaysian University of Science reflects his interests in sociolinguistics and psycholinguistics.