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Network meeting, 16-17 September 2010

From 16th – 17th September 2010 the second Networking Meeting of the EPOSTL2 project was held at the ECML. It was attended by the coordinating team, David Newby, Anne-Brit Fenner, Barry Jones and Sylvia Velikova, and also nine project participants: Barbara Mehlmauer-Larcher, Françoise Wolf-Mandroux, Hafdis Ingsvarsdóttir, Evija Latkovska, Magdalena Urbaniak, Maria José Rodríguez-Maimón, Cecilia Nihlén, Natalia Orlova, and Kaarina Mäkinen. The main aims of the meeting were a) to take stock of the ways in which the EPOSTL is being used in member states, to discuss challenges and propose measures that might be taken to optimise the use of the EPOSTL; b) to plan the forthcoming project publication. In addition, the new Information Pack, which appeared in June, was presented and discussed. We are looking forward to a publication which will provide many useful insights for those who are using, or planning to use the EPOSTL.

Bulgaria, 23rd April 2010


On 23rd April 2010, an ECML National Support Event entitled Teachers as Lifelong Learners. The European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages was held in Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria. The event, co-organized by the Bulgarian English Teachers Association (BETA-IATEFL) and the University of Veliko Turnovo, aimed at disseminating the EPOSTL and exploring the various possible uses of the Portfolio in the Bulgarian educational context. The forum was attended by over 80 participants – foreign language teacher educators (representatives of all teacher education institutions in Bulgaria), FL experts, primary and secondary school teachers, head teachers, directors of studies and university lecturers. Following the welcome address by Dr. Bagrelia Borisova, Vice-rector for European Integration and Mobility at the University of Veliko Turnovo, David Newby (EPOSTL author and EPOSTL2 project co-ordinator) gave an opening plenary speech and presented the EPOSTL, its origins, principles, functions as well as the EPOSTL-related activities, currently taking place all over Europe and beyond. The plenary talk was followed by a practical session, in which Sylvia Velikova (University of Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria) demonstrated an approach to integrating the EPOSTL in a teacher education programme through EPOSTL-oriented awareness-raising, meaning-making and focused reflection activities. Later on Evija Latkovska (University of Latvia, Latvia), presented her research into Latvian students’ perceptions of the EPOSTL and their attitudes to self-assessment. In a concluding workshop, Svetlana Dimitrova and Svetlana Tashevska (New Bulgarian University, Bulgaria) added a perspective, based on the New Bulgarian University “Pedagogical Portfolio” as a resource containing a variety of support materials, used both as a self-assessment tool and an evaluation instrument. The day ended with a roundtable, animated by David Newby, where the participants raised some practical questions of implementing the EPOSTL – to introduce the whole document to student teachers or to follow a “step-by-step” approach; purposes for using the EPOSTL (for developing reflection and self-assessment skills and/or for external assessment of teachers’ competences). The Event was accompanied by a mini-exhibition of ECML publications and promotional material, which gave the opportunity to the Bulgarian foreign language teaching professionals to familiarize themselves with past and ongoing ECML projects, activities and publications.

      Conference Programme

Network meeting, 4-5 February 2010


  Network meeting February 2010
  From 4th – 5th February 2010 a Networking Meeting of the EPOSTL2 project was held at the ECML. It was attended by David Newby, Anne-Brit Fenner, Barry Jones, Sylvia Velikova, Cecilia Nihlén, Evija Latkovska , Natalia Orlova and Françoise Wolf-Mandroux. The main aim of the meeting was to draw up a concept for a new EPOSTL Information Pack, which will help to publicise EPOSTL and to support its dissemination in teacher education institutions. The InfoPack will contain printed materials and a CD; all materials will also be available online. The materials envisaged are: a brochure explaining EPOSTL, a handout ‘Why use EPOSTL?’, a handout ‘Strategies for implementing the EPOSTL’ aimed at teacher educators and stakeholders. 2 PowerPoint presentations will be provided on the CD. Draft versions of all the materials were drawn up. The InfoPack should be available in the next few months in English, French and German.

At the end of the year...

As 2009 comes to a close, the coordinating team is in the process of taking stock of the sub-projects which were set up during the workshop and which are currently taking place across Europe. You will shortly be able to read about these projects under the 'National Projects' section of the EPOSTL2 website. We have also developed a series of resources which provide information about EPOSTL, which is available under the 'Resources' section. In the first few months of 2009 an 'Information Pack for Stakeholders' will be available in English, French and German, which will provide additional information, including a commented PowerPoint presentation.

At present EPOSTL has been published in four languages (English, French, German and Polish, all downloadable from the 'Resources' section). Italian and Romanian versions are in print, and translations into Albanian, Croatian, Dutch, Greek, Lithuanian and Spanish are underway.
Most important of all, EPOSTL is being used by student teachers in many member states of the ECML and those of us involved in teacher education are exploring on a daily basis how we feel EPOSTL can best be used in our own contexts. We look forward to sharing our experiences with you.


Coordinator`s meeting, 21- 23 May 2009, University of Bergen, Norway


From 21- 23 May 2009 a coordinators’ meeting of the EPOSTL2 project took place at the University of Bergen, Norway. The main aims of this meeting were to take stock of the many activities which have taken place and are currently in progress within the framework of the EPOSTL 2 project, to consider what measures can be taken to provide ongoing support to the projects, to increase the visibility of dissemination activities and national projects, both for project participants and for visitors to the EPOSTL2 website, and to plan the further stages of the project, leading up to its conclusion in 2011. The stock taking of projects showed that a very large number of activities have taken place in the 20 member states that are actively involved in the project and that project members are extremely active, both concerning the dissemination of EPOSTL and its implementation within teacher education institutions. In the coming weeks measures will be taken to make these activities more visible on the EPOSTL2 website.

The 9th international conference of R A T E (Romation of Teachers of English)nian Associa


This conference took place from 31st October to 2nd November in Bucharest. It was particularly significant for the EPOSTL project since the event was used to mark the translation into Romanian of both the EPOSTL and the European Profile for Language Teacher Education by Prof. Anca -Mariana Pegulescu, of the Romanian Ministry of Education. It was thus an opportunity to strengthen links between these two publications. For Prof. Pegulescu the conference was of particular significance: not only was she able to present her two translations but on the second day of the conference she received the happy news that she had become a grandmother for the first time!

The photograph shows the co-author of the European Profile for Language Teacher Education, Mike Kelly, and of the EPOSTL, David Newby, with Anca-Mariana Pegulescu, the translator of both documents.

Euro-Arab Days for Better Mutual Understanding

History, Languages, Media and Intercultural Challenges
Tunis, 27 – 28 October 2008

The overall aim of this conference was to improve cooperation between the Council of Europe and ALECSO, the Arab League Cultural and Scientific Organization, within three specific areas: the media, the teaching of history and the teaching of languages.

Approximately 30 participants attended the languages section. ALECSO representatives were drawn from various groups of decision makers – Ministry of Education officials, Inspectors, Curriculum Designers etc. and came from a wide variety of countries; Tunisia, Morocco, Mauretania, Sudan, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Kuwait, Bahrain are examples of countries represented in this section.

The sessions consisted of a series of three workshops, in each of which presentations were given by one Council of Europe and by ALECSO experts. The topics presented by Council of Europe delegates were: Common European Framework of Reference and the European Language Portfolio (Daniel Coste), the Autobiography of Intercultural Encounters (Martyn Barrett), the work of the ECML and the EPOSTL project (David Newby). The ALECSO presentations included topics such as ‘Presentation of the survey of foreign language teaching in the Arab world’; ‘Arabic Language Observatory’.

Of particular interest was the presentation of the ‘Guide for Teaching Languages in the Arab World’, by the authors, Ms. Jaouida Ben Afia and Ms Mounira Hammami, both from Tunisia, responsible for the English and French version respectively. Since the Guide and the EPOSTL follow similar aims, it is hoped that close cooperation will be possible between the two projects within the remaining three years of the EPOSTL2 project.

Workshop “The European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages (EPOSTL) in a Lithuanian Context”

From 18 – 19 June 2008 a workshop on the European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages in Vilnius was held at Vilnius Pedagogical University, conducted by David Newby and  Nida Kozemiakaite. The workshop was organised jointly by Ms. Vilma Bačkiūtė and Ms. Irena Raudienė of the Lithuanian Ministry of Education and the ECML. At the end of the workshop an extensive dissemination plan was drawn up for using EPOSTL at Lithuanian teacher education institutions. The workshop was followed by an international conference organised by Ms. Egle Sleinotiene entitled Language as a Pathway to a Multilingual Europe. The photograph shows the conference being opened by the Lithuanian Minister of Education.

EPOSTL2, Central Workshop, ECML, 11 - 13 June 2008

From 11 - 13 June 2008 the central workshop of the project EPOSTL2 took place at the ECML. It was attended by 31 teacher educators from 28 countries. The first day was mainly concerned with getting to know the EPOSTL and its rationale and potential. On the second day, participants considered various ways of using the EPOSTL in their own educational contexts. Experiences already gained by the coordinators and three Austrian participants who had worked with EPOSTL provided suggestions for implementing the document.
Finally, participants considered how EPOSTL could best be disseminated at a national level and then outlined a variety of projects that they will carry out, either on an individual basis or in cooperation with participants from other countries, during the duration of the EPOSTL2 project. These 15 projects include both case studies, which will be compiled as examples of good practice for other users of EPOSTL, and specific research projects focusing on aspects such as the outcomes of using EPOSTL among student teachers, teacher educators and mentors.

1st Project planning meeting: 14-15 Feb. 2008

The first planning meeting of the EPOSTL2 project took place from 14 – 15 February at the ECML
Discussion centred on the three main strands of the project: disseminating the EPOSTL in member states; producing case studies showing how the EPOSTL can be implemented in initial teacher education; carrying out research into quantitative and qualitative aspects of the use of the EPOSTL. In addition, the coordinating team decided to produce an information pack for both stakeholders (Ministries of Education and other decision makers etc.) and EPOSTL users (teacher educators, student teachers, mentors etc.) This will consist of a flyer and PowerPoint presentations, with audio commentary, explaining the background and rationale of the EPOSTL. The information pack will be available from the project website by the end of May. Finally, a detailed programme was worked out for the central workshop, which will take place at the ECML from 11-13 June 2008.


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