University of Technology Sydney

024713 Teaching English in International Contexts

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2021 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Education: Applied Language and Literacy Studies
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade, no marks


This subject develops students’ understanding of the teaching/learning of a second or subsequent language, particularly in contexts outside Australia. It examines a range of practices for teaching English to speakers of other languages and raises awareness of cultural and linguistic diversity and the impacts on language learning. This subject is specifically designed for all students undertaking an International Professional Experience (IPE) program. Priority for enrolling in the subject is accorded to students who have expressed an intention to undertake an IPE program.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

a). Develop an awareness of cultural and linguistic diversity, and how languages work together to support learning.
b). Increase awareness of English language structures and functions, including issues that might arise for EFL learners.
c). Examine the principles and practices of teaching English in an overseas context.
d). Acquire a range of strategies for teaching English in an overseas context, preparing lessons and resources, with a special emphasis on using oral language for authentic communicative purposes

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

This subject addresses the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes:

1. Professional Readiness

1.2 Design and conduct effective learning activities, assess and evaluate learning outcomes and create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments (GTS 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

2. Critical and Creative Inquiry

2.1 Analyse and synthesise research and engage in inquiry (GTS 3)

3. International and Intercultural Engagement

3.1 Respond critically to national and global changes that affect learners, learning and the creation of a well-informed society (GTS 3)

3.2 Respect diverse societies and cultures and demonstrate inclusive practices (GTS 1, 3, 4)

6. Effective Communication

6.2 Exhibit high level numeracy and literacies (GTS 2)

Teaching English to International Students introduces students to teaching models, strategies and resources suitable for use in overseas classrooms. In this way the subject prepares students for the demands of teaching in an unfamiliar educational and cultural context. Through their participation in the subject, students acquire teaching skills that are effective in overseas classrooms as well as Australian classrooms where children are operating in English as an additional language. The subject promotes consideration of cultural context, thorough lesson planning, reflection on teaching and self-evaluation, all of which are desired attributes of graduates of the Bachelor of Education program.

AITSL Graduate Teacher Standards most closely related to this subject:

  • Know the content and how to teach it: 2.1-2.6
  • Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning 3.1-3.7
  • Create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments 4.1, 4.5
  • Assess, provide feedback and report on student learning 5.1-5.5
  • Engage in professional learning 6.1-6.4


Teaching and learning strategies

In class time, the teaching and learning strategies will include: discussions, material and strategy analysis, guest speakers, presentation of strategies and ideas to peers, feedback and suggestions, analysis of documents and viewing of practice. Students will be expected to prepare fully for class so that they are able to contribute in a knowledgeable manner. Group and class work will be done in a respectful and collaborative manner, understanding that topics at times deal with cultural, political and emotional issues. Full attendance is required on a weekly, face-to-face basis.

A short formative assessment task will be given in Week 2. This will enable the lecturer to provide feedback about individual academic language needs.

Outside class time, students will read view a short weekly presentation on-line that will assist them to engage and understand the weekly, prescribed readings. Close and critical reading of these required texts is a necessary part of students’ learning in the subject, and evidence of this will be seen in students’ response to the assessment tasks.

Content (topics)

This subject will investigate some of the issues in teaching English in a variety of international educational contexts, considering the experiences of learners of English as a second or subsequent language. The subject will look at:

  • how and why English is taught worldwide
  • how multilingual users use languages to learn and communicate
  • the complexities of English
  • how to teach English in the multilingual classroom
  • cultural, political and social considerations for classrooms, particularly using Asia/Pacific examples.

Students will be encouraged to use contexts that are familiar or of interest to them to apply ideas and orient assessment content.


Assessment task 1: Building a multilingual profile


a) and b)

Weight: 40%

1200 words, plus references + appendices if needed

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Identification of a variety of elements of language use and consideration of how these have been developed and used in the respondentís life. 30 a), b) 2.1
Appropriate use of readings to discuss the facets of the profile. 40 a) 2.1
Considered reflection of what has been learnt from the investigation. 20 a) 3.2
Appropriateness of academic English and citation of sources. 10 b) 6.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 2: Supporting English Learning in the Classroom


b), c) and d)

Weight: 60%

Presentation: 10 minute presentation, plus 1 page (max). of supporting text/diagram

Written report: 1800 words + appendices

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Oral Presentation: Provision of relevant text and relevant tasks to teach English. 10 d) 1.2
Appropriate and accurate description of learners and the context for learning English (as ascertained from research) 15 b), c) 3.1
Appropriate choice of text for identified learners; understanding and correct identification of text elements 20 b), d) 2.1
Relevant choice of English language learning tasks, justified in relation to learnersí needs, that extend knowledge of English 40 b), d) 1.2
Appropriateness of academic English and citation of sources. 15 b) 6.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Minimum requirements

Full attendance and participation in all class activities, together with contribution to discussion are expected. Please endeavour to keep absences to an absolute minimum, and be prepared to provide written documentation to account for absences if at all possible. Non-attendance without adequate explanation may result in failure of the subject. In any case, it is expected that students who miss a class will be required to undertake supplementary activities/readings in lieu of attendance for that session.

Required texts

Please ensure that you have familiarized yourself with the following document:

UTS Coursework Assessment Policy and Procedures Manual that may be downloaded at:

NOTE: Students are required to use a consistent and recognized form of academic referencing. APA 6th Edition is the preferred style, with links to a comprehensive guide and examples available through the UTS Library site

Required Texts

Cook, V. & Singleton, D. (2014). Key Topics in Second Language Acquisition. UK: Multilingual Matters.

This is available as an e-book from the UTS Library,

Other readings will be posted in the UTS Online site: please see weekly folders

Recommended texts

Highly recommended:

Gibbons, P. (2000). Learning to learn in a second language. Newtown, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association; Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Hammond, J. & Miller, J. (Eds) (2015) Classrooms of possibility: supporting at-risk EAL students. Newtown: PETAA.

Hertzberg, M. (2012). Teaching English language learners in mainstream classes. Newtown: PETAA.

NSW DET (2004). English as a second language: Guidelines for schools. Darlinghurst, NSW: NSW DET. Also available online.


Recommended readings

References for language terms

Language glossary

Linguistic glossary

Culture, language and learning

Brusch, B. (2012). The linguistic repertoire. Applied linguistics, 33(5), 503-523.

Buchanan, J., Major, J., Harbon, L., & Kearney, S. (2017). Preparing teachers through international experience: A. collaborative critical analysis of four Australian programs. In C. Reid & J. Major (Eds.). Global teaching: Southern perspectives on teachers working with diversity (pp. 189-208). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Chik, A., Benson, P. & Moloney, R. (Eds). (2019). Multilingual Sydney. Oxon, UK: Routledge.

Chik, A., Markose, S. & Alperstein, D. (2018). Languages of Sydney: The people and the passion. Candlin & Mynard ePublishing Ltd.

Choi, J. & Ollerhead, S. (Eds). (2018). Plurilingualism in teaching and learning: Complexities across contexts. New York, NY: Routledge.

Garcia, O. (2009). Bilingual Education in the 21st Century: A global perspective. London, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.

Hélot, C. & Ó Laoire, M. (Eds). Language Policy for the Multilingual Classroom, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Murata, K. & Jenkins, J. (Eds). (2009). Global Englishes in Asian Contexts: Current and Future Debates. Basingstoke, United Kingdom: Palgrave Macmillan.

Pennycook, A. (2007). Global Englishes and Transcultural Flows. UK: Routledge.

Pennycook, A. & Otsuji, E. (2015). Metrolingualism Language in the City. Oxon, UK: Routledge.

Being bilingual

Grosjean, F. (1982). Life with Two Languages. Harvard: Harvard University Press.

Harding, E., & Riley, P. (1986). The Bilingual Family: A. Handbook for Parents. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

English Language Learners

Baker, C. (2006). Foundation of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism. UK: Multilingual Matters.

Gibbons, P. (2015). Scaffolding Language, Scaffolding learning: Teaching English Language Learners in the Mainstream Classroom. 2nd ed. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Hammond, J. & Miller, J. (Eds) (2015) Classrooms of possibility: supporting at-risk EAL students. Newtown: PETAA.

Hertzberg, M. (2012). Teaching English language learners in mainstream classes. Newtown: PETAA.

English language

Harper Collins (1990). Collins Cobuild English Grammar. London: Harper Collins.

Derewianka, B. (2011). A. new companion grammar for teachers. Newtown, Australia: Primary English Teaching Association of Australia

Humphrey, S., Droga, L. & Feez, S. (2012). Grammar and meaning. Newtown, Australia: Primary English Teaching Association of Australia.

McLeod, S., & McCormack, J. (Eds.). (2015). Introduction to speech, language and literacy. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Nelson, G. (2001). English: An essential grammar (2nd Edition). London: Routledge.

Winch, G. & Blaxell, G. (2007). Primary grammar handbook (3rd Edition). South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Zeegers, M. (2013). Grammar matters. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Language teaching methodology

Glossary of methods

Brown, D. (2014). Principles of Language Learning and Teaching. White Plains, N.Y.: Pearson Education.

Brown, D. (2015). Teaching by Principles: an interactive approach to language pedagogy. White Plains, N.Y.: Pearson Education.

Forman, R. (2016). First and second language use in Asian EFL. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.

Gopal, A. (2011). Internationalization of higher education: Preparing faculty to teach cross-culturally. International Journal of Teaching and Learning, 23(3), 373-381.

Hall, D.R. & Hewings, A. (Eds.). (2001). Innovation in English language teaching: A. Reader. London: Routledge.

Harmer, J. (2015). The Practice of English Language Teaching, 5th edition. England: Pearson Education Limited.

Harmer, J. (2007). How to Teach English. Harlow England: Pearson Longman.

O’Neill, S & Gish, A. (2008). Teaching English as a second language. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Reinders, H., Lewis, M., & Phung, L. (2017). Studying in English: Strategies for success in higher education. London: Palgrave Macmillan Education.

Scarino, A. & Liddicoat, A. (2009). Teaching and learning languages: A. guide. Carlton South, Vic: Curriculum Corporation.

Scrivener, J. (2011). Learning Teaching: the essential guide to English. Oxford : Macmillan Education.

Swan, M. (2001). Learner English: a teacher's guide to interference and other problems. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press.

Westwood, P. (2008). What teachers need to know about reading and writing difficulties. Camberwell, Vic: ACER Press.

International organisations

UNESCO Interactive Atlas of Endangered languages

UNESCO (2003). Education in a Multilingual World: UNESCO Education Position Paper, Paris: UNESCO


Australian language resources (EAL/D related)

ACARA. (2014). The Australian Curriculum English Syllabus

ACTA The Australian Council of TESOL Associations

ATESOL Association for Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages (NSW).

Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. First Language assessment materials. (2nd Ed.).

Online resources: Useful if you might be contemplating volunteer work internationally. According to their site (22/12/08) there are 59 million teachers – the largest group of trained professionals in the world. What a force for change we are. ATESOL (Association for Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages) has branches in various states. This is the NSW site, and has various ideas for units of work etc. The Centre for Learning Innovation, has resources related to NSW Syllabus outcomes. Requires a DEC login for most of the information. ACTA - the Australian Council of TESOL Associations - an umbrella group. This site has several levels and pages of resources. A Guidelines for Schools document The DEC ESL support page. Requires DEC login for most information. The Modern Languages Teachers’ Association of NSW. Ideas might be tangential to ESL/EFL, but some would be adaptable. Access to resources appears to require a subscription. A good range of teaching ideas, games, etc., as well as some jobs information. a website hosted by Paul Shoebottom. Some useful information and resources. You can test yourself on apostrophes, for example. Dave’s ESL Café. A range of teaching ideas, as well as information on job opportunities and the like.$8 This lists a number of sites. I haven’t checked them all (so read discerningly), but those I know of on the list are good. Same for the following: The Macquarie University site, so it should be sound. It has a number of language activities. Useful for research on teaching destinations. Up to date and reliable (but inevitably has an American slant). Our Asian Stories (DEC). Useful if you want to familiarise yourself with some Asian contexts for teaching (or teaching about Asia in Australia). Judie Haynes is an American ESL teacher. The site has some good teaching/learning ideas and hints for teachers. ANU’s bibliography of Australian English – a list of related publications