Ursula Stickler
This one-day workshop will provide an opportunity for a maximum of 50 participants to try out online tools that can support the learning and teaching of languages in different context.


  • Developing practitioners’ skills in the use of online elements in language teaching (face-to-face, blended and fully online courses).
  • Raising practitioners’ awareness of the need for self-training and continuing professional development in the area of integrating Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in their teaching practice.

Blended format:
The one-day face-to-face workshop will be embedded in pre-workshop online and offline preparation tasks and post-workshop online follow-up activities.

Before the workshop day participants will be invited to fill in an online survey to answer some questions on teaching practice, use of technology, and attitudes. To qualify for participation, applicants will need to enrol in a Moodle workspace to familiarise themselves with some of the workshop tasks, and prepare two activities to bring to the face-to-face workshop on 27 August 2017.

The face-to-face workshop will be interactive. After a short presentation given by the main organiser, Ursula Stickler, all participants will contribute and work in small groups to discuss best practice, try out a selection of online tools and deepen their understanding of integrating online elements into face-to-face language classes. An interactive online repository will be used to introduce pedagogically valuable tools for language teaching.

Follow-up tasks will consist of evaluation, participating in a follow-up survey, and contributing own activities and recommendations to the workspace.

Kan Qian 阚茜
This half a day workshop will introduce the concept of ‘Learning design’ - applying knowledge of pedagogy and learning analytics to the design of effective online courses. We will look at the design of one or two online courses to illustrate how the designing principles and learning analytics guided the design of learning activities and assessment. The participants will have the opportunity to design an online language course using the concept of learning design.


  • Raising practitioners’ awareness of the need for self-training and continuing professional development in the area of integrating pedagogy, Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in their teaching practices.
  • Raising practitioners’ awareness of the need for reflecting on and researching into their teaching practices.
  • Developing practitioners’ skills in the use of learning analytics and other available data to inform the design of learning activities.

Exploring Patterns of Blended Teaching and Concurrent Moral Emotions
— with Special Reference to Chinese Mixed-Ability Learners of English


What is it for a teacher to teach English to a class of over 100 students with mixed abilities whose proficiency levels ranging from ABC to intermediate? Does the provision of Web-based courseware and mobile APPs empower the teacher to do individualized learning or simply incur low morale and frustrations? This paper, based on some preliminary empirical studies carried out in the years 2014-16 in China, reports the theoretical part of the project, leaving the actual data analysis for another occasion.

For College English teaching in China, a package consisting of the print textbook, the Web-based courseware and the mobile APPs has become a standard provision of resources. The hypothesis motivating this standard provision is that the teacher is enabled to do blended teaching and that the student is enabled to do individualized learning at any time, and any where. The hypothesis turns out to be formulated on a highly idealized teaching/learning scenario. The status quo of actual practice is as remote as ever from the ideal. Emerged from our pilot studies are 9 patterns of blended teaching grouped in two major categories: (1) 4 patterns due to the varied instructional philosophies adopted by teachers; (2) 5 patterns, i.e., varied configurations showing the ways the teacher, the student, the print textbook, the courseware, and mobile APPs interact with one another.

There are current emotions that are concurrent with 9 patterns. The current emotions, being different from mood, and triggered by learning objects and instructional events in situ, are moral emotions experienced by both the teacher and the student. Moral emotions refer to emotions due to the cognitive/evaluative appraisal of emotional triggers coming from the teacher, the student, the print textbook, the courseware and mobile APPs. This aspect of investigation takes it as a fact that emotion affects the teacher in instruction, and the student in learning. Preliminary analysis of our video-based recording of emotions has shown that both the teacher and the student experience complex emotions of both positive and negative kinds.



A Blended-mode MA in ELT Program Design, Implementation and Evaluation


This talk reports the design and efficacy of a blended-mode MA in English Language Education program at Beijing Foreign Studies University. The program was jointly launched by the School of Online Education, and the National Research Centre for Foreign Languages and Education, of Beijing Foreign Studies University since September 2015. It offered master-level education courses in English language education in a blended-mode to the in-service people, English teachers in particular. Research method in the form of a questionnaire was undertaken to gauge students’ attitudes toward and experiences with the program content, teaching methods and teachers, assessment, interaction and feedback, and technology. Altogether 204 students completed the survey, and the researcher will discuss the survey results drawing upon students’ responses and reflections. The study will shed light on how to improve the program and on discovering the most appropriate ways of in-service English teacher education in China.





该专题讲座持续四十分钟,首先会介绍北外网院语言课程的网络学习环境,重点介绍本人近两年所做的一项研究,研究北外网院英语专业学生学习学位课程“跨文化交际”的过程,本研究采取质性和量性相结合的方法,展示学生在学习网络课程中如何处理开放性和封闭性学习任务,以及任务对他们的学习产生的影响。量性方法采用问卷形式,发现学生对处理开放性和封闭性任务的认识和反思, 质性方法采用访谈形式,通过访谈8位同学,了解他们更加深入和细致的开放性和封闭性学习任务的处理策略。


Task-based language learning process in the Chinese online learning context

This presentation will talk about student learning process in online courses in the Chinese online context and how students learn English with open and closed tasks in the online learning environment.

Closed and open tasks are both employed in online language learning courses. Closed tasks are highly structured and have specific goals. They are useful for students to practice certain language aspects and rules. Because closed tasks have a limited number of outcomes, they are popular in online environment, and widely used in self-assessment exercises. The computer can provide automated scores and fixed feedback to students after they have completed closed tasks in their language practice. In contrast, open tasks are loosely structured and students may have many different ways to answer them. These tasks provide a variety of language practice to students and encourage creativity and imagination in learners, which are important in language learning. But because of the complexity of the open tasks, tutors are required to grade them and provide relevant feedback.

The 40-min presentation will introduce the context of student language learning at Beiwaionline. Focusing on a particular group of students when they learn ‘Cross-Cultural Communication’, the researcher has conducted a study exploring how the open and closed tasks impact their language learning process with a mixed method which consists of a questionnaire and interviews. The questionnaire intends to find out student perception of how they process the open and the closed tasks. In the interviews, eight students are chosen to answer questions in depth to search for their particular strategies to cope with the open and closed tasks in the online language course.

The research has shown that students spend more time on the open tasks and have more communication with fellow students. Most students feel that they can complete closed tasks independently with technological tools, textbooks and dictionaries. When they deal with open tasks, they tend to ask for help from course mates and from the tutor. This result may have pedagogical implications for online course designers and online teachers. Before we choose task types for our students, we must understand that they are meant to promote some learning behaviours and benefit some language performance.




Improving online learning: Designer perceptions of useful and challenging characteristics
Online courses continue to grow in both academic and non-academic settings. In view of this, learners are increasingly fastidious about whether or not the courses can meet their demands. This talk draws on statistics gathered by both the presenter and third-party platforms on the characteristics of bestseller online courses. The analysis suggests that an overemphasis on the academic correctness of course content without considering the learners’ changing demand is conceptually flawed and practically risky. The conceptual flaws lie in failing to appreciate that the learners’ demand is shaped by more factors than academic concerns, which present immediate challenge for course marketing. However, it is the presenter’s view that courses can be modified in ways appropriate both to academic correctness and learners' interests. 







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