International conference bannerNEW TRENDS IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHING

the PETALL Project International Conference


Organized by the University of Granada and the European-funded project PETALL

28 -29 April 2016

Venue: Faculty of Education Sciences

University of Granada, Spain (location in the map)

Conference programme

Book of abstracts and biographical notes


Aims and scope of the conference


Language teaching approaches, methods and procedures are constantly undergoing reassessment. New ideas keep emerging as the growing complexity of the means of communication and the opportunities created by technology put language skills to new uses. In addition, the political, social and economic impact of globalization, the new demands of the labour market that result from it, the pursuit of competitiveness, the challenges of intercultural communication and the diversification of culture are all phenomena that have opened new perspectives on the central role that foreign languages have come to play in the development of contemporary societies.

This has far-reaching consequences in terms foreign language learning. Learners have become more aware of these changing circumstances. They now seek practical solutions for their needs in real contexts, and this has entailed a radical departure from the school’s traditional teacher-directed curriculum. The Common European Framework for Reference has helped teachers to rethink their strategies and attitudes and has opened new research avenues in the field.

It is therefore important for teachers to learn about the latest developments in the field and to get some practical ideas that can help them further develop their teaching skills, optimize their students’ learning and renew their practices.

This conference aimed to discuss the new trends in foreign language teaching that result from these new contexts. Current proposals range, amongst others, from Communicative Language Teaching to Content and Language Integrated Learning, from Cooperative Language Learning to Task-based Language Teaching, and from the Lexical Approach to Text-based Instruction. To this broad array of approaches, we must add the potential that ICT has to offer in terms of increasing the learners’ motivation and enhancing the teaching and learning process.

One of focuses of this conference was Task-based Language Teaching (TBLT), which is at the core of the European-funded project PETALL – Pan-European Task-based Activities in Language Learning. It is currently one of the approaches to language learning that has witnessed an increasing attention on the part of teachers, researchers and other education professionals.

In order to promote this approach, we intended to provide a space not only for the reflection on the potential of ICT in Task-based Language Teaching, but also for learning about the latest developments in this area and about practical ideas that can be implemented in the language classroom.

A series of practical workshops were offered on ICT and Task-based Language Teaching. Namely:

  1. Online resources for task-based activities: analysis and evaluation
  2. Evaluating the students’ performance in task-based activities
  3. Designing a task-based activity for the language classroom
  4. Where to find ideas: European projects on task-based language learning

Main topics of the conference

We invited people to send us contributions with a focus on (but not exclusively) the following topics:

  1. Current approaches to language teaching (for example, Communicative Language Teaching; Content and Language Integrated Learning; Cooperative Language Learning; Task-based Language Teaching; the Lexical Approach; Text-based Instruction)
  2. Technology-mediated task-based language teaching
  3. Foreign language teaching policies (including curricula and syllabi) in Europe
  4. ICT and Computer-assisted Language Learning
  5. New perspectives on the evaluation and assessment of language learning
  6. Bridging approaches (e.g. Content & Language Integrated Learning and Task-based language Teaching)
  7. Innovative projects
  8. Foreign language teaching and adult education
  9. Teachers’ innovative practices and personal experiences

We also received proposals for workshops and panels on these topics or other subjects related thereto.
Since this conference was also for language teachers and student teachers, we invited them to share their experiences with the other participants and contribute with their ideas and examples of good practice.

Different types of presentations

We received proposals for

» 20-minute presentations (+10 minutes of Q&A)
» posters (5-minute presentations)
» workshops

The working languages of the Conference were English and Spanish. Abstracts were evaluated according to the originality of the theme, approach and relevance of the proposal.

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We are currently working to produce a refereed selection of papers to be published by the PETALL Project as a volume of studies.

Organising committee

Raúl Ruiz-Cecilia (University of Granada, ES)
António Lopes (University of Algarve, PT)
Aslı Tarakçıoğlu (Gazi University, TR)
Julijana Vučo (University of Belgrade, SRB)
Danijela Manić (Belgrade Aviation Academy, SRB)
Hans v. d. Linden (Regionale Opleidingsschool WF, NL)
Marija Dragutinović (Regionale Opleidingsschool WF, NL)

Scientific committee

António Lopes (University of Algarve, PT)
Aslı Tarakçıoğlu (Gazi University, TR)
Carla Marello (University of Turin, IT)
Christa Doil-Hartmann (Landesinstitut für Schule, DE)
Elisa Corino (University of Turin, IT)
Ilona Fried (Eötvös Lórand T., HU)
Ioannis Karras (University of Patras, HE)
John de Cecco (University of West of Scotland, UK)
Julijana Vučo (University of Belgrade, SRB)
Lindsay Dombrowski (University of West of Scotland, UK)
Maria Isabel Orega (University of Algarve, PT)
Raúl Ruiz-Cecilia (University of Granada, ES)
Ton Koet (University of Amsterdam, NL)