Mini-Conference Reports

The 2011 Higher Ed and Adult Ed Mini conference was held on Saturday, February 26, 2011 at the University of Utah.

There were six presenters, many of whom have recently served on the I-TESOL Board:  Norm Evans, James Hartshorn (secretary), Troy Cox (past president), Ben McMurry (past treasurer; webmaster), Grant Eckstein (past Higher Ed IS chair), and Marisa Lee.

Their workshop defined the term curriculum and provided a step-by-step guide for creating and improving an ESL curriculum by dividing the process into clear, inexpensive, and effective steps. Specifically, we used the ADDIE model for instructional design.

ADDIE stands for Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation. They used this model to present ways to analyze the needs of a program, design and develop program solutions, implement those solutions, and evaluate their success.  They also discussed how a curriculum could continue to improve naturally when stability, cohesion, and responsiveness are kept in balance.  To facilitate uptake of their instruction, they presented an extended vocabulary example of curriculum development from their own recent program re-design at BYU’s English Language Center.

Additionally, their workshop mixed instruction with interaction.  For instance, attendees participated by discussing their own institutions and ways that each step of the ADDIE model could function for them—though this was admittedly rushed and a little complicated at times.

Overall, the workshop was a success.  Several attendees stayed for additional questions and requested more interactions and feedback from some of the presenters.  After the workshop, all feasted on pizza, pasta, and brownies.

Thanks to the many attendees and assistants who made this the most well attended Higher Education and Adult Education Mini Conference in recent history.

As an epilogue to their Mini Conference, the presenters took their workshop to TESOL in New Orleans where they presented it as a full-day Pre-Convention Institute.  It was the highest attended institute of the convention, with nearly double the participants of any other institute.  Way to go Utah!

Upcoming Conferences

Literacies for All

Register now for the Literacies for All conference July 21-24 in Las Vegas, NV http://www.ncte.org/wlu/institute.  Teachers, families, and students are invited to share their stories of the experiences they have had within and beyond the classroom to nurture the literate identities of the communities in which they live.  Keynote speakers include Ernest Morrell, Mariana Souto-Manning, Kadir Nelson, and Linda Christensen.

Member Spotlight: Ben McMurry

Ben McMurry is currently serving as the Treasurer and Webmaster for I-TESOL.  Ben grew up in Texas, but has lived in Utah for about that last 10 years.  He just finished working full-time at BYU’s English Language Center and he is currently in school to working on a Ph.D. 

Previously he served as the Higher-Ed Interest Section chair.  He reports that he really enjoys working with I-TESOL because it has given me the chance to meet people that have the same interests as he does.  Ben invites people to visit his website http://www.benmcmurry.com or blog http://blog.benmcmurry.com.

Westminster College

Westminster College’s English as a Second Language Institute is currently seeking adjunct instructors for the following courses in the Fall 2011 semester, which will begin Aug. 24, 2011. The courses that adjuncts will teach in this program are:


ESL 141 Academic Speaking and Listening (Advanced level) TTH 12:00-1:15 (3 credits)

ESL 153 Advanced Grammar and Vocabulary TTH 2:00-3:15 (3 credits)

ESL 141 emphasizes speaking and listening skills in the context of a small, liberal arts college.  This includes participating in class and small-group discussions, taking notes during lecture, giving presentations, and talking to professors during office hours.

ESL 153 is an advanced level course with an emphasis on editing, written grammar, and vocabulary from the Academic Word List.  This includes the words’ grammatical features and common lexical chunks such as collocations.

Adjunct pay ranges from $720 per credit to $870 per credit, depending on teaching experience and degree.

Applications for this position must possess a Master’s degree in TESOL, applied linguistics, or related field.  Preferred candidates will also possess teaching experience in a related field.  Application materials, including vitae, and a cover letter, which expresses interest in teaching one or both of the classes above should be sent to Jennifer Ritter jritter@westminstercollege.edu. She can also be contacted at 801 832 2377.