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Title:Teaching pronunciation as a volunteer ESL tutor: Determining needs and designing support
Author(s):Sims, Linda M.
Advisor(s):Sadler, Randall W.; Franks, Suzanne C.
Department / Program:Linguistics
Discipline:Teaching of English Sec Lang
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Adult ESL Program
Staff Development
Abstract:The demand for English instruction surpasses the availability of trained professionals and affordable programs as increasing numbers of immigrants and other international visitors to the U.S. seek out opportunities to improve their English language skills (Henrichson, 2010). To help meet this need, many community programs—often staffed entirely by volunteers—offer classes in a variety of informal settings. In most programs, however, the key qualification for volunteer tutors is simply that they are native speakers of English and are willing to share their time to help others (Henrichsen, 2010; Pennycook & Coutand-Marin, 2003; Snow, 2006). In other words, most volunteers have no professional preparation in teaching ESL . This ultimate aim of this study was to develop professional development resources—specifically in the area of pronunciation—designed for those who volunteer in adult ESL programs, but who have little/no professional training in ESL. Interviews were conducted with 20 volunteer tutors and 11 adult ESL students to assess their knowledge and attitudes about pronunciation teaching and learning. The interview findings were considered in conjunction with current research in pronunciation pedagogy to develop a program that would provide volunteers with a research-based foundation in pronunciation pedagogy that would ultimately help them provide more effective support for their students. The resulting program has a flexible structure to accommodate the realities of a community program staffed by busy volunteers. The program is designed to span several months and includes resources for an introductory workshop, scripts for a series of short video tutorials about a variety of pronunciation topics, and accompanying print materials to use with students.
Issue Date:2018-07-12
Rights Information:Copyright 2018, Linda M. Sims
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-09-27
Date Deposited:2018-08

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