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A TESOL practicum in Croatia

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Title of host publicationCurrent Perspectives on the TESOL Practicum
DatePublished - 29 Feb 2020
Pages109-127
Number of pages19
PublisherSpringer
EditorsAndy Cirocki, Irshat Madyarov, Laura Baecher
Original languageEnglish
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-28756-6
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-28755-9

Abstract

Learning English has become a major initiative of government educational policies in many countries. Croatia has a long history of English language teaching, and current educational policies have supported its prominent place by introducing English as the first foreign language in grade one in the majority of elementary schools. The increased need for English language teaching has placed
more emphasis on language teacher education programmes at the tertiary level. The TESOL education programme at the University of Zadar provides students with a foundation in current theories in second language acquisition, principles of language teaching, and language teaching methodology. The major aim of the TESOL practicum is to link students’ theoretical knowledge with teaching practice. Focused observations, reflection, and dialogue play key roles in the practicum along with positive cooperation between schools, teacher supervisors, and the university faculty.
Students have the opportunity to carry out their own lessons and critically reflect on their own teaching. However, several challenges remain, including the need for better coordination between university and school programmes, more precise clarification of student competences and skills, education programmes for teacher supervisors, improvement of the status of teacher supervisors, and more class teaching time for students.

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