Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2014-2015 (archived)

Module LANG42015: Advanced Teaching Practice: The Reflective Practitioner

Department: English Language Centre

LANG42015: Advanced Teaching Practice: The Reflective Practitioner

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2014/15 Module Cap
Tied to Q3K807


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Excluded Combination of Modules

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  • at the end of this module students will:
  • demonstrate a facility with a variety of teaching methodologies and classroom techniques and practices
  • demonstrate knowledge of a range of techniques and practices that inform the language classroom and be able to demonstrate the practical application of these in their own teaching and lesson planning
  • demonstrate an ability to prepare and deliver lessons appropriate to the specific needs of their students
  • demonstrate the ability to design and implement appropriate lesson sequences with appropriate timings, materials and interactions for the students in their context
  • demonstrate an ability to critically reflect on aspects of their teaching practice both as observers and as practitioners
  • have been teaching/observing and involved in feedback on a total of 20 hours of teaching practice which will both enable them to reflect critically and evaluate their own and others' practice and in turn aid their professional development
  • be able to draw on methodology and theories of language learning to underpin choices made in teaching practice and lesson planning


  • this module is designed to develop experienced teachers' classroom practice and provide them with the tools to critically reflect on and evaluate their own and other's teaching. As such, the main part of the module will be taken up with the students teaching a group of real foreign language learners in the classroom and in this sense it is very much 'practical' in nature. Students will teach a group of international students, observe their peers teaching and then reflect on their own and their peers' performance in the classroom
  • there will be a total number of 20 hours of teaching practice sessions on the module which will not only practically aid students to improve their teaching skills but also equip them with tools which will aid their overall professional development. Tutors and peers will provide feedback on teaching, focussing on areas of strength and aspects of teaching practice that could be improved upon and thought differently about with the aim of aiding future lessons and teaching
  • the module is designed to complement the Language Teaching Methodology module which focusses on the theoretical approaches to language teaching. Theories will be thus 'tested', 'reflected on' and explored through the reality of classroom practice. Students will plan and design their own course and classes and this will be done in a collaborative environment with imput from peers and tutors
  • seminars will focus on both course and lesson planning with input in critical areas of English language teaching such as techniques, lesson planning and methods, for example, classroom management, dealing with language, improving skills teaching. Seminars will be led by student presentations and discussions of key areas, leading to an enhanced understanding of classroom practice and a development of the individual student-teacher's teaching skills.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • understanding a variety of language teaching techniques and methodologies currently available
  • understanding of key issues of and techniques for classroom management
  • knowledge of lesson plan design based on the range of current techniques in language pedagogy
  • understanding of the concept of, history and development of reflective practice and its application in pedagogic settings with a focus on ELT
Subject-specific Skills:
  • ability to critically appraise the language teaching techniques and methodologies currently available and the ability to demonstrate these effectively in a classroom context
  • ability to critically evaluate teaching techniques
  • development of pedagogical creativity and the ability to demonstrate this in the classroom
  • ability to apply appropriate classroom management techniques
  • ability to design and implement lessons for a particular context and group of learners that reflect current and appropriate teaching techniques and methods
  • ability to purposefully engage and involve learners in the learning process
  • ability to reflect on one's own and others' practice and to demonstrate learning and development in relation to reflective practice
Key Skills:
  • ability to read and understand primary texts in language pedagogy
  • ability to understand and critically evaluate and reflect on one's own performance and that of others

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • the course will fundamentally be student-led and involve students teaching a group of non-native English language learners in the classroom
  • the key weekly sessions will involve teaching practice, observation and feedback on teaching. Students will be expected to keep a journal reflecting on learning in these sessions
  • the supplementary seminars will focus on key areas related to all aspects of teaching and the classroom, for example: classroom management, staging lessons, teaching skills, focussing on language etc. These seminars will again be predominantly student-led with tutor comment

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 1 week 1 only 2 hours 2
Seminars 10 weekly 1 hour 10
Practicals/DVD Sessions 9 weekly, preceding the seminar 2 hours 18
Preparation and Reading 120

Summative Assessment

Component: Reflective Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Reflective Assignment (based on 4 entries from students' Reflective Journal) 2,500 words (not including 4 diary extracts) 100%

Formative Assessment:

Evaluation of reflective journals Formative lesson plan

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University