Strategies in Language Education

March 14th, 2023 by dayat No comments »

Cooperative Learning, Paideia, Role-plays and Simulations, Inquiry Based Learning, Mastery Learning, and The Glasser Approach are six common strategies used in language education. Cooperative Learning, Paideia, and Role-plays and Simulations focus on group work. The students work together to facilitate the learning process. Students are free to be creative. Inquiry Based Learning, Mastery Learning, and The Glasser Approach are more student-focused. The teacher focuses on the individual students.

Cooperative learning: A method of learning in which students work together to answer a question or complete a task. Individual students must participate in the group in order to help the group succeed. Students can be assigned roles (e.g. facilitator, time-keeper, reporter, etc) in the group to help keep the group organized and on task. Students can be assessed both individually and as a group. The assessment is usual based on the end result of the project. Every student must participate and contribute to the group. In the process of answering the question or completing the task, the students help each other learn the material.

Paideia: This method breaks the lesson up into three different parts. First there is the lecture. This is when the teacher introduces the material to the students. This occupies 10% to 15% of the class. The second step is putting the students into groups and having them work on a project. This usually comprises 60% to 70% of class time. The third and final step is a class discussion about what was learned. During the class discussion the teacher tries to challenge the students’ current thinking. This is done during the last 15% to 20% of the class.

Role-play and Simulations: Students work in groups to create real life, or imaginary, scenarios to show the use of learned vocabulary and/or grammar points. The simulations are intended to be real life roles (e.g. a business meeting). The role-plays are usually imaginary and can be used to show a situation (e.g. meeting a friend). Students are assessed for their performances according to specific guidelines put in place by the teacher. After the role-play, there is a class discussion about what happened.

Inquiry Based Learning: A method of teaching where students actively take charge of their own learning. The class is led by student questions and interests rather than the teacher’s lesson plan. The teacher adapts the lessons to help the students learn what they want to learn. Open learning takes place, because the students are asking questions in search of a solutions that do not have a single answer. The main goal of this method is to teach the students to learn on their own by asking questions.

Mastery Learning: A method of learning based on the idea that all students can learn but need different amounts of time to accomplish their tasks. Two important aspects of Mastery Learning are feedback and consistency. The teacher pre-tests the students to find their mistakes. Then, designs a lesson to correct the students’s mistakes and re-tests the students to make sure that all the students have mastered the skills. A lesson is then made that have the students use the skills they have learned and mastered in the previous lesson.

Glasser Approach: Students choose what they study based on future goals. This is so they enjoy the learning process and find the lessons useful. The teacher finds out which topic the students want to learn more about and then suggests topics to study. This method focuses on the behavioral aspects of learning, such as how the students feel in the class.

Rebecka Benedict, M.A., is an EFL instructor with over ten years’ experie

Fraud In English Language Education – Keep Your Money Safe From Criminals

October 14th, 2022 by dayat No comments »


Students want to attend high quality established schools. Schools will use fraud to attract students to their school or attempt to appear more established to qualify for government programs or association membership. Schools that claim to have specific affiliations, qualifications, assets, programs, staff or history that are untrue are committing fraud. Schools have also used fraudulent statistics to show jobs or salary upon graduation.

A favorite trick is to name a language school as a “college”. The word college in Canada is not an official use name and anyone can name any building, house or barn as a college. Students should not choose a school simply because it has college in the name. College in the name does not mean anything in Canada.

Another trick is to use the same name or almost identical name of a famous school in the USA, UK, Asia, or Europe. If the famous school has not registered the name in Canada then anyone else can register the name without any affiliation with the original school at all. Students should not pick a school because it has a famous name in their country as it may have no affiliation at all and is designed to trick students.

Schools will appoint international agents or representatives to promote and market the school to potential students then not pay for the advertising or not pay the agency fees. Fraud schools will defraud agents by stating students did not register.

Some of the schools are owned by agents. When an independent agent presents the school with a potential student that student will be contacted by the head office agency and re-registered in the name of that agent thus defrauding the original hardworking agent.


Students looking for foreign schools and teachers looking for overseas employment use agents to simplify travel and registration arrangements that are usually made in a foreign language.

Agents have used a number of practices to deceive students, teachers, schools and immigration officials.

Agents committing fraud sell fake medical reports, fake police reports, fake bank deposits records, fake identities and travel documents. These illegal practices include access to student visas, illegal access to free medical services and illegal jobs.

There was a famous case in Toronto where fraud agents just sat in a coffee shop outside a language school. They approached Asian students and spoke in Korean or Japanese only. They asked students if they had signed up for the ajoining language school. They were also asked if the students had used an agent. If the students had signed directly they were made an offer that if they went back to the school and placed the fraudsters name as agent they would get a 10 or 15% refund from the fraudsters.

Agents have promised teachers overseas jobs that do not exist. Agents have promised facilities or accommodation or teaching resources that do not exist. Wages that are not paid, work visas that never appear and host of other problems.

One agent operated a fake teachers “blacklist”. He placed a few known criminal schools then a few of the legitimate schools on the list. This agent was charging fees to the honest schools to be removed.

There were a couple of agents that were promising backpackers jobs as English conversation teachers. They told the backpackers that no visa or degree was required. They told the English school that they had a teacher with a work visa, degree and plane expenses. The school usually paid the agent upfront for the plane ticket, recruiting fee and expenses. On the second or third day the school would realize the “teacher” was not suitable and try to call the agent. The agent would call his friend in immigration who would arrest the backpacker and fine or close the school for using an illegal worker. This scam would net the agent half a years regular office salary. With 5,000 small language schools – there were plenty of uninformed new victims. That is also why these agents they use a different name or company name every six months.


The most prevalent fraud is to use the student visa as an entry into Canada to work. These fraud students take away jobs from Canadian immigrant newcomers and jobs for Canadian students. If one really looked at the reasons for Canadian student, youth and newcomer unemployment in Canada – significant culprits are the employers who use illegal workers.