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Insights into the European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages

This book is intended principally for two groups of readers: teacher educators involved in the training of teachers of foreign languages and student teachers. However, it will be of interest to anyone involved in language education.

Published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, January 2012
£39.99 from Cambridge Scholars Publishing
£37.99 from Amazon

The book is divided into three parts:

Part I: The theoretical basis of the EPOSTL

This section focuses on theoretical insights relevant to the use of the EPOSTL. In chapter one, David Newby discusses some of the issues which arose in the design of the EPOSTL and in its implementation. The most important function of the EPOSTL is as a tool for reflecting on the competences which teachers strive to attain. In the second chapter Anne-Brit Fenner therefore considers the role of reflection in education, looks at different theoretical approaches to reflection and indicates the role that it plays when the EPOSTL is used. A further aim of the EPOSTL is to support an autonomous mode of learning, both on the part of student teachers and their learners. In chapter three, Hanna Komorowska discusses the concept of learner autonomy and its place in education. In the last chapter of this section, Michael Byram presents a model of culture and analyses to what extent this model is represented in the descriptors of the EPOSTL.

  • The European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages: Background and Issues
    by David Newby
  • The EPOSTL as a Tool for Reflection
    by Anne-Brit Fenner
  • Learner Autonomy and its Implications for the EPOSTL
    by Hanna Komorowska
  • Reflecting on Teaching ‘Culture’ in Foreign Language Education
    by Michael Byram
Part II: The EPOSTL and other European instruments

As stated above, the EPOSTL builds on insights from three other European publications, each of which is the focus of a chapter in this part. In chapter five, David Newby examines the relationship between the EPOSTL and the Common European Framework of Reference, focusing on the correspondences between their respective competence descriptors. In chapter six, Hanna Komorowska explains the rationale of the European Language Portfolio and examines similarities and differences between the ELP and the EPOSTL. In chapter seven, Mike Grenfell, one of the co-authors of the European Profile for Language Teacher Education, presents its aims and content and indicates how the two documents may be used in a complementary fashion in the curriculum design of teacher education.

  • The EPOSTL and the Common European Framework of Reference
    by David Newby
  • The EPOSTL and the European Language Portfolio
    by Hanna Komorowska
  • The EPOSTL and the European Profile for Language Teacher Education
    by Mike Grenfell
Part III: Implementing the EPOSTL

In the final part, three case studies are presented, illustrating how the EPOSTL can be used in practice. In chapter eight, in the first of these studies, Barbara Mehlmauer-Larcher describes how the EPOSTL is used in the training of future English teachers at the University of Vienna and also discusses theoretical aspects of her approach. The context she describes represents the ‘mainstream’ use of the EPOSTL; in the last two chapters, case studies are presented which show additional uses to which the EPOSTL can be put. Barry Jones describes a “bi-lateral” teacher education programme between the University of Cambridge and the Institut Universitaire de Formation des Maîtres at Antony in France, in which the EPOSTL played a key role. He further discusses reactions of the English and French students to using the EPOSTL. In the last chapter, Rita Kupetz and Hannah Ruhm give an account of how the EPOSTL was used in a short training course for German exchange assistants who were about to begin a period of teaching in the United Kingdom. 

  • The EPOSTL: Promoting Language Teacher Learning in the Context of Field Experiences 
    by Barbara Mehlmauer-Larcher
  • Using the EPOSTL within a Bi-lateral Primary Modern Languages Teacher Training Programme
    by Barry Jones
  • The EPOSTL as a Tool to Document and Reflect on Teaching Experiences Abroad
    by Rita Kupetz and Hannah Ruhm

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