• What should we talk about? The authenticity of textbook topics March 24, 2014
    Topics presented in textbooks and covered in language classrooms are crucial parts of language teaching, as they facilitate student engagement, willingness to communicate, and ultimately, learning. However, whilst researchers and practitioners frequently discuss the authenticity of the language in textbooks, the authenticity and usefulness of textbook topics
    Siegel, A.
  • Moving beyond accuracy: from tests of English to tests of 'Englishing' March 18, 2014
    This article examines how English is conceptualized in the domain of testing, and particularly the tendency to identify the concepts of ‘standard English’ and ‘native English’ with ‘the language itself’. I argue that such a monolithic view is inconsistent with the diversity of Englishes attestable across both native and non-native users and uses, and that th
    Hall, C. J.
  • Towards creativity in ELT: from word plays to drama March 12, 2014
    ‘Readers respond’ is a forum for individuals to contribute their own reactions, perspectives, or experiences in relation to a specific article published in a recent issue. These views are not necessarily those of the Editor, the Editorial Panel, or the Publisher. This article responds to Tin, T. B. 2013. ‘Towards creativity in ELT: the need to say something
    Zhang, Y., Gao, C.


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LinguistList 2014 Fund-Drive


Many times I’ve needed the help of The LinguistList, a free online discussion board and virtual community of practice. They helped me get data for my MA and I am sure I will need them for my PhD too. Now they need our help to keep running a free service. I see this as a . . . → Read More: LinguistList 2014 Fund-Drive

IATEFL Harrogate 2014

harrogate logo

Once again I am missing out on IATEFL 2014 in person, but have been able to participate virtually using the fantastic online tools provided by the conference. Today is the last day of the conference, but the online content usually gets more interesting after the conference. Check it out here


The Architecture of Language Reconsidered: Noam Chomsky Lecture


Language is like a hammer. It’s just there for you to use. You can use it to build a house or you can use it to bash someone’s head in. . . . → Read More: The Architecture of Language Reconsidered: Noam Chomsky Lecture

Vizualize Me


This is a great site which takes information from your social networks and builds an infographic. It has a very neat feature in which it shows a world map of the languages you speak and the countries where they are spoken.



. . . → Read More: Vizualize Me

Tokyo CLIL Workshop July 6th 2013, Senshu University

CLIL Japan

This is a quick report on the workshop given at Senshu University last weekend. Many thanks to Stephen Ryan of Senshu for inviting us, to Kay Irie of Tokai University for her enthusiasm and support, and for leading a great panel discussion. We would also like to thank Mr. Tsuchiya at the Language Laboratory at . . . → Read More: Tokyo CLIL Workshop July 6th 2013, Senshu University becomes




Dear valued followers, readers and clients

Recently, due to rather irritating circumstances and a fall-out with my registrar (123-reg) I have had to move my blog to a new domain. As they kept the name and that has now been bought by another company (sigh) I have had to migrate everything to . . . → Read More: becomes



This site, as any regular readers will have noticed, has been a little low on fresh updates for a while. I think I did well to get an interview with Phil Benson all about autonomy up there, but the updates and posts are in no way as regular as they used to be. This is . . . → Read More: Research

Interview with Philip Benson – Autonomy

Dr Philip Benson


This interview took place between Richard Pinner and Philip Benson via Skype. Philip Benson is a leading researcher and expert on Language Learner Autonomy. He is the author of several books on Autonomy and currently teaches at the Hong Kong Institute of Education. 07/12/2012

RP: First, the new edition of your book. Is . . . → Read More: Interview with Philip Benson – Autonomy

CLIL – Content and Language Integrated Learning

Watanabe, Y., Ikeda, M., & Izumi, S. (Eds). (2012) CLIL: New Challenges in Foreign Language Education. Vol. 2, Tokyo: Sophia University Press.

The field of CLIL has become a great passion of mine in the last few years, particularly since moving to Japan and working with Sophia University in Tokyo. Under the guidance of Dr. Makoto Ikeda, I have been finding myself more and more involved with Content and Language Integrated Learning and finding that the approach . . . → Read More: CLIL – Content and Language Integrated Learning

Phil Benson – Autonomy Lecture at TUJ

Phil Benson_0

Benson’s own definition is the last one in the table, that learner autonomy is “a capacity to control learning.” He then went on to expand on this and to break the components of capacity and control down into how they relate to the learner and their context. . . . → Read More: Phil Benson – Autonomy Lecture at TUJ