College Quick TEFL

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This is how our TEFL graduates feel they have gained from their course, and how they plan to put into action what they learned:

A.P. - U.S.A. said:
Teaching StylesSince beginning this course I have given a great deal of thought to where in the world I might like to teach. However, I have also become increasingly interested in the various styles of teaching. There are as many different styles of teaching as there are practicing teachers, but these many approaches can be divided into a few distinct categories, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. Psychologist Anthony Grasha identified five principle teaching styles. Of these, perhaps the most traditional is the teacher as a formal authority. Teachers adopting this style ?possess status among students because of knowledge and role as a faculty member (Grasha).? These teachers focus on providing feedback, and establishing goals and rules for their students, and are typically try to stick close to the standard ways of doing things. This style is very teacher centered; one was quoted as saying ?I am the flashlight for my students, I illuminate the content and materials so that my students can see the importance of the material and appreciate the discipline? (Stein). Formal authority teachers focus on creating structure in the classroom. This structure can be helpful to students, but there is also a danger of the class becoming too rigid, and the rules becoming more important than the needs of individual students. Similar to the formal authority teacher is the teacher as expert. These teachers see themselves as possessors of knowledge needed by their students. The expert teacher ?strives to maintain status as an expert among students by displaying detailed knowledge and by challenging students to enhance their competence? (Grasha). Communicating knowledge is an essential element of education, and the expert role is helpful communicating this knowledge. There is also a danger, however, of overwhelming the students with too much information, or of intimidating weaker students with an overzealous display of knowledge. The teacher as personal model is a markedly different approach from both expert and personal authority. The personal model teacher leads by example, offering themselves as someone for their students to emulate. This approach places more emphasis on student participation, although ?students are expected to take some responsibility for learning what they need to know and for asking for help when they don't understand something? (Stein). students may compare themselves too harshly with an instructor of this type, and feel that they are failing to live up to the example provided. The teacher as facilitator places even more emphasis on the relationship between teacher and student. The facilitator takes a more Socratic approach to education, preferring to guide the class through the use of questions and indirect guidance. These teachers ?emphasizes student-centered learning and there is much more responsibility placed on the students to take the initiative for meeting the demands of various learning tasks? (Stein). The goal for the facilitating teacher is independent action on the students? part. This method can be very time-consuming, and may not be able to provide the structure that some students might prefer. The last of Grasha?s categories is the teacher as delegator. The delegating teacher is ?concerned with developing students' capacity to function in an autonomous fashion? (Grasha), and place the greatest emphasis upon students responsibility in the classroom. Projects are a major part of the delegator?s classroom. students are often allowed to take a lead role in designing and implementing the goals of the class, and this style ?works best with students who enjoy working with their peers, needing little direction from the instructor? (Design for Adult Learning, Teaching and Learning Theory, Feedback). This level of freedom can be overwhelming for students at a low level, or who are not used to working under their own initiative. Grasha?s five groups are a useful way of talking about the different styles of teaching. It is a mistake, however, to assume that any one style is applicable to every situation in every class. The five styles would serve teachers best as models, different possible approaches that they might use depending on the needs of their students.

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