Integrating Teaching and Research Achievements of Chinese Language and Establishing a New-Type Confucius Institute with Distinctive Publishing
-- An Overview of 2017 European Chinese Language Teaching Conference

[Source]    Confucius Institute at Oxford Brookes University [Time]    2017-08-08 15:29:00 

From July 5th to 6th local time, the 2017 European Chinese Language Teaching Conference was successfully held at St Catherine's College in Oxford University.

The conference, sponsored by the Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban) and co-hosted by the Confucius Institute at Oxford Brookes University, Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press and Macmillan Education, had the presence of over 100 experts and teachers from all over the world. They discussed issues including the establishment of the standards and outlines of European Chinese language teaching, teaching methods, class management, teaching resources development, application of new technology and Chinese learning for special purpose through different ways, such as keynote speeches, session speeches and workshops.

Among the representatives at the conference were teachers from Confucius institutes, as well as teachers and scholars from local universities and middle schools of countries including China, the UK, the US, the Netherlands, Italy and Singapore. The universality of representatives enabled the Chinese teaching system in Europe to learn from the latest achievements from various teaching and research backgrounds.

A group photo of representatives

During the two-day conference, the scholars, represented by Prof. Yuan Boping from Cambridge University, delivered many reports on topics like second language acquisition and oral speaking evaluation. Passionate teachers also proposed many effective practices such as “pragmatic ways to improve the students’ reading ability” and “pragmatic management methods for middle school class”. Through the integration of academics and pragmatism, teachers can receive high-level guidance, and creatively study and apply these principles. They stated that this conference offered great help in improving their theory and teaching levels.

Teachers listening carefully at the conference

Publishing resources development was a unique feature of the conference. The conference introduced international Chinese textbooks co-published by Macmillan Education and the International Chinese Publishing Center of Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press. These two renowned entities have already published famous international Chinese textbooks including Across China, Reading Chinese and Everyday Chinese, boasting advanced textbook compilation and rich development experience.

Consultant for Macmillan Education, former President of International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language (IATEFL) and Order of the British Empire Simon Greenall introduced the compilation concept of communicative approach, widely used in English textbook compilation, and now into Chinese textbook compilation, thus providing a whole-new perspective of exploring textbook resources for teachers.

The training for textbook compilation technique of Prof. Ding Anqi, a scholar at East China Normal University and also one of the authors of Across China, provided the experience of a detailed and pragmatic operation. These new attempts open the communication channel for publishers and front-line teachers and authors, while the procedure of turning the achievements of teaching and research outcomes into printings would be largely shortened.

Simon Greenall (left) exchanging experience on compiling textbooks with teachers

The conference was an effective attempt by the Confucius Institute at Oxford University to establish a distinctive new-type Confucius Institute. The Confucius Institute at Oxford University, built in October, 2015 under the joint efforts of Oxford Brookes University and Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press, is one of the youngest Confucius Institutes in the UK. The institute has contributed to integrating the advantageous resources of the publishing industry of China and the UK and to establishing an international publishing platform for Chinese textbook, and provided the professional and continuous service for local textbook compilers and build a brand of Confucius Institute with distinctive publishing.


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