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About This Blog
This blog is written for English language teachers who are interested in the intersection of teaching, learning, research, and technology. It was originally created with the purpose of answering frequently asked questions when I was a teacher educator in Russia.  I often found myself with limited time to answer questions during my outreach program presentations, so this blog gave me a platform to more thoroughly answer their questions.  It also helped me to demonstrate the relatively new phenomenon of blogging at the time.

The purpose changed when I became an English language teacher in Wisconsin.  I wanted to use this blog as part of my portfolio, especially with activities and lessons I found to be successful and/or fun to implement.  Just as I started getting grounded with ideas such as skeptical thinking and cooperative speaking and listening activities, I enrolled at the University of Iowa, where I spent the first couple years fleshing out my ideas that emerged in Wisconsin.
 
About Me
After earning my PhD in Teaching and Learning (Foreign Language and ESL Education) at the University of Iowa, I became the Curriculum and Technology Coordinator for CESL at Southern Illinois University.  I have lived in Carbondale, Illinois with my wife and daughter since July 2015.  My research interests are in teacher education, specifically in developing the intercultural competence in pre-service and in-service educators of English language learners.  My dissertation is on the adjustment process of sojourning English language teachers in Japan and South Korea.  

Prior to my life as an Iowa graduate student, I was an associate lecturer for two years at the ESL Institute at the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse, where I began to develop my ideas for incorporating skeptical thinking into the English for academic purposes (EAP) classroom, a frequent topic in this blog a few years ago.

My interest in English language teaching methodology and curriculum development came from my four years as a teacher educator in South Korea and Russia.  In South Korea, I became a disciple of content-based instruction (also known as CLIL) and a practitioner of classroom interactions, which are a collection of techniques used to develop learners' oral proficiency and increase their oral output.  As a Senior English Language Fellow in Russia, I focused more on cooperative learning techniques and task-based learning and teaching as I traveled around the Greater Volga Region as part of an outreach teacher education program.

The foundation of my pedagogical knowledge and philosophy comes from my graduate studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.  There I learned not only about English language education but also instructional systems design, an incredibly useful tool for efficiently developing curricula.  My training at UMBC has helped me stay focused on the academic, linguistic, and affective needs of the learner and to develop course objectives, assessments, and activities based on those needs.

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