Follow us
Follow us
Home Past Conferences 2020 Conference

The 16th Annual CamTESOL Conference was held at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia on 7th to 9th February 2020, with the theme, ‘21st Century ELT: Approaches for Effective Practices’.

On the evening of Friday 7th February, the Official Opening Ceremony was co-opened by HE Dr Hang Chuon Naron, Minister of Education, Youth & Sport, HE Pablo Kang, Australian Ambassador to Cambodia, HE Tina Redshaw, British Ambassador to Cambodia, Mr Arend Zwartjes, Public Affairs Officer, US Embassy, and Mr Mao Sreng, Country Director and CamTESOL Conference Convenor, IDP Education (Cambodia).

Following the formalities, the Opening Plenary Panel Discussion, themed ‘Stakeholders in ELT Research and Education’, provided perspectives and insights on current trends and future directions of language-related research. Our panellists included Prof. Gary Barkhuizen, University of Auckland (New Zealand), Dr Patrick Pheasant, NEAS (Australia) and Dr Keuk Chan Narith, Institute of Foreign Languages (Cambodia), with Dr Andrew Tweed, Meijo University (Japan) as moderator.

Over the course of two full days, Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th February, registration for the conference totalled 1,600, including 600 participants from 31 countries. Around 500 presentation sessions across 21 streams were successfully delivered, and there were featured sessions by international conference partners including Dr Marie Yeo, SEAMEO RELC (Singapore), Prof, Fatchul Mu’in, TEFLIN International Conference (Indonesia), Ms Magdaline Anak Muuk, MELTA International Conference (Malaysia), Dr Pornpimol Sukavatee, ThaiTESOL Conference (Thailand), and Dr Andrew Tweet, Meijo University (Japan).

The 16th Annual CamTESOL Conference ended with the Closing Plenary Panel Discussion on the topic of, ‘Core Curriculum & Delivery Issues’. Our panellists were Prof. Diane Larsen-Freeman (University of Michigan, USA), Dr Marie Yeo (SEAMEO RELC, Singapore), Dr Khan Bophan (Institute of Foreign Languages, Cambodia) and it was moderated by Andrea Echelberger (Minnesota Literacy Council, USA).

The CamTESOL Mobile App made it easy for conference delegates to access up-to-date information about the conference and connect with other ELT researchers and practitioners.

Additional activities included:

  • Orientation Program for provincial Cambodian teachers
  • Welcome Reception for all conference delegates
  • Educational and Cultural Visits

The featured and plenary speakers at the 16th Annual CamTESOL included:

Plenary Speaker
Prof. Diane Larsen-Freeman
Professor Emerita of Education,
University of Michigan

On Becoming a Learning-Centered Teacher in 21st Century ELT

Change is occurring at a rapid pace in this century. This fact means that we have to think deeply about what constitutes an approach for effective practices for 21st century ELT. In the past, general approaches to ELT have been characterized as “teacher-centered” or “learner-centered.” Rapid change, learners able to access content in English on their own through the use of technology, and learners being increasingly interconnected with others around the globe call for a different approach. I will propose in this talk that an effective approach for the 21st century is one that is “learning-centered,” one in which we teach students how to learn. What this term means and how ELT teachers can enact it in their classrooms will be the focus of my remarks.

Prof. Diane Larsen-Freeman is Professor Emerita of Education, Professor Emerita of Linguistics, and Research Scientist Emerita at the English Language Institute, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She also served as the Director of the ELI from 2002-2008. In addition, she is a Professor Emerita at the Graduate SIT Institute in Brattleboro, Vermont and a Visiting Senior Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania. Her books include An Introduction to Second Language Acquisition Research (Longman Publishing, 1991, with Michael Long), the third edition of The Grammar Book: Form, Meaning, and Use for English Language Teachers (National Geographic Learning, 2015, with Marianne Celce-Murcia), and the third edition of Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching (Oxford University Press, 2011 with Marti Anderson). In 2003, she published Teaching Language: From Grammar to Grammaring. Another book, entitled Complex Systems and Applied Linguistics (Oxford University Press, 2008), which she co-authored with Lynne Cameron, was a winner of the Kenneth Mildenberger Book Prize, awarded by the Modern Language Association. Dr. Larsen-Freeman edited the journal Language Learning for five years, and until recently, served as Chair of its Board of Directors. In 2009, she received an Honorary Doctoral Degree in Humanities from the Hellenic American University, and in 2011 the American Association for Applied Linguistics bestowed upon her its highest honor: The Distinguished Scholarship and Service Award.

Plenary Speaker
Prof. Roland Sussex
Emeritus Professor of Applied Language Studies
University of Queensland, Australia

‘Revisiting the Challenges in Effective English Communication: An Intercultural Domain’

Intercultural communication involves at least one interlocutor not speaking their first language. But intercultural communication competence does not align simply with language competence. This is particularly relevant for English in its lingua franca roles. While speakers may acquire a sound command of the forms of English (spoken or written, active or passive), this competence often does not match competence in the pragmatics of ESL, or with the cultural values expressed in ESL outputs. Speakers may use English forms to express non-English messages, which poses significant problems of comprehension for their interlocutors, especially first-language English speakers. This talk illustrates mis-matches between the forms, pragmatics and cultural values of ESL messages, especially but not only from Asia.

Prof. Roland (Roly) Sussex (M.A. Hons Canterbury; PhD London) is a specialist in language, communication and culture, and health communication. He was Professor of Applied Language Studies at the University of Queensland from 1989 until 2010. Before that he taught Linguistics and Russian at the University of Reading (UK) and Monash University in Melbourne, and was the foundation professor of Russian at the University of Melbourne from 1977 to 1989.

He is currently Research Professor in the Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation, and in the School of Languages and Cultures, at the University of Queensland. Since "retiring" he has become involved in social issues as a public intellectual.

He was chair of the Library Board of Queensland from 2009 to 2014, and then Deputy Chair (2014-2016). He was President of the Alliance Française of Brisbane (2010-2017), and is currently President of the English Speaking Union of Queensland (2018-).

In 2012 he was made Patron of the Institute of Professional Editors. He is co-editor of the international journal Intercultural Communication Studies, and is a member of the editorial boards of a number of academic journals.

His current research is focused on language, culture and society, technology, and, more recently, pain and health. He is a member of the PainLang Research Group at the University of Queensland, which is investigating the use of language in the diagnosis, treatment and management of pain ( His most recent major publications are The Slavic languages with Paul Cubberley, Cambridge University Press, 2006); Andy Kirkpatrick and Roland Sussex (eds), English as an international language in Asia: Implications for language education. Berlin and London: Springer-Verlag, 2012); and Andy Curtis and Roland Sussex (Eds). (2018). Intercultural communication in Asia: Education, language and values. Berlin and London: Springer Verlag. Roly Sussex has been writing a weekly column on language for the Brisbane Courier-Mail since 2006. His talkback radio program A Word in Your Ear has been broadcast every week to Queensland on ABC radio since 1997, and for the last 16 years to South Australia. His Queensland broadcasts are podcast by the ABC:

When he is not engaged in researching and writing about language, communication, culture and health, he works on his garden and acreage, rides road bikes and mountain bikes, and indulges his passion for classical music.

He was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2012, and was a made a Chevalier des Palmes Académiques by the French Government in 2017.

Plenary Speaker
Dr. Hanan Khalifa
Director of Partnership, Projects and Policy
Cambridge Assessment English

‘Teaching, Learning, & Assessment in the 21st Century ELT: A Reform Initiative’

Introducing external or standards-based assessment as part of reform initiatives is becoming increasingly frequent with three predominant aims: improving language learning outcomes, providing public accountability and promoting desired changes in learning and teaching practices. It is now widely recognised that examinations have multi-faceted, complex effects on behaviour within and beyond the classroom. Given that “good examinations are not guaranteed to produce positive results and bad examinations do not necessarily produce bad ones” (Wall 2004:xiv), understanding the impact of assessment interventions remains a phenomenon worthy of investigating especially given the complex nature of educational systems and challenges faced in implementing reform initiatives.

In this talk, the speaker will reflect on the use of assessments as a reform initiative in English language education at a national and regional levels in the k-12 sector. The speaker will start by discussing the role of assessment, at the outset of a reform initiative, in providing an evidence base for decision making and action planning. To exemplify such role, a case study from Malaysia will be reported on. The speaker will then move on to discuss the role of assessment as a tool in a reform initiative. In doing so, the speaker will share the design and report on the results of a Vietnamese case study which utilised international examination as a reform tool in primary education. Here, the study looked into the impact of assessment on students’ motivation, behaviour and learning outcomes; on teachers’
confidence, teaching practices and professional development; on parental engagement and home learning reinforcement; and on curriculum, learning materials and funding.

Both case studies evidence how the concept of learning-oriented assessment is key to teaching practices. The studies also demonstrate that education reform requires an in-depth understanding of complex relations and interactions in each national setting; and the importance of the interplay between assessment, curriculum and pedagogy.

Dr. Hanan Khalifa leads a cross-divisional team of Cambridge English experts in the field of language learning, teaching and assessment, providing evidence-based decision-making and transforming language education, working with ministries of education worldwide and developing strategic partnerships at a global level.

Previously Hanan has held ministerial roles as an advisor to education ministers and university presidents, and has worked for international development agencies and world renowned educational firms (BC, AMIDEAST, AIR, FHI 360). Hanan's areas of expertise are language testing, educational assessment, monitoring and evaluation, standard setting, research (methodology, instrument design, data analysis) and institutional capacity building.

Hanan’s work experience includes education reform strategy, bespoke solutions, test design, curriculum and syllabus design, materials development, baseline and impact studies, assessment audits, and managing large surveys (TIMMS & PISA). Hanan is an expert member on Council of Europe CEFR panels and the EAQUALS inspection committee. In 2018, she was the first international female expert to be appointed as a board member in a state university in Malaysia. Hanan has presented worldwide, with a track record of over 60 conference presentations and 30 publications, including Examining Reading (used as key reference material by ALTE and by Master's programmes in UK universities). She was the recipient of the 1989 Hornby Award for ELT and a joint winner, with Burns and Brandon, of the 2013 IEAA Award for innovation in International Education. Hanan holds a PhD in Language Testing from Reading University, UK.

Key publications and conference presentations

Burns, A and Khalifa, H (Eds) (2017) Second Language Assessment and Action Research, Studies in Language Testing volume 48, Cambridge: UCLES/Cambridge University Press.

Docherty, C, Barakat, T, Kniveton, E, Mikati, L and Khalifa, H (2017) Improving student learning through upskilling teachers: The case of Lebanon, Research Notes 65, 75-88.

Khabbazbashi, N, Khalifa, H, Robinson, M, Ellis, S and Mifsud, C (2017) Understanding language learning in Malta, Research Notes 65, 3-23.

Khalifa, H and Docherty, C (2016) Investigating the impact of international assessment: A convergent parallel mixed methods approach, in Moeller, A J, Creswell, J W and Saville, N (Eds) Second Language Assessment and Mixed Methods Research, Studies in Language Testing volume 43, Cambridge: UCLES/Cambridge University Press, 269-295.

Saville, N and Khalifa, H (2016) The impact of language assessment, in Tsagari, D and Banerjee, J (Eds) Handbook of Second Language Assessment De Gruyter Mouton, 77-94.

Featured Speaker
Dr. Marie Yeo
Senior Language Specialist
SEAMEO, Regional Language Center (RELC)

‘Tips for Publishing in an International Journal: An Editor’s Perspective’

Doing research and publishing papers have become increasingly important for academics in the field of language teaching and teacher education. For some, promotion and even contract renewal are contingent upon having publications in internationally-indexed journals. Doctoral students too are often required to publish before graduating. The pressure to publish is immense. While research and publication support professional learning and sharing of ideas, there is also a dark side, namely, the proliferation of bogus journals. Those desperate to publish may unwittingly end up paying to publish in such journals because of their lack of knowledge about the practices and processes involved in publishing. This presentation aims to provide a clear understanding of how to identify credible and appropriate journals, how the review process works and what prospective authors can do to increase their chances of acceptance. This presentation will be of interest to all who are concerned about safeguarding academic publishing. Less-experienced authors who are keen to build up their publication records will gain useful tips on how to increase their chances of getting published in an international journal.

‘New Techniques in Language Assessment: Unleashing the Potential of Assessment as Learning’

The 21st century has seen an increase in emphasis on Assessment for Learning (AfL), commonly associated with formative assessment. Research has shown that formative assessment when used well “can effectively double the speed of student learning” (Wiliam 2007). Although many teachers are now using formative assessment strategies, there remains a lack of understanding of the theory and practice of formative assessment. This paper will answer questions such as What does formative assessment look like in the classroom?, What are the criteria for effective formative assessment? and What activities and resources can we use for formative assessment?. Arguing that one of the main concerns in formative assessment is learners’ lack of take-up of feedback, the presenter will propose Assessment AS Learning as a way of engaging learners in the assessment process and developing their metacognition. The presenter will then demonstrate some Assessment AS Learning activities for teaching English and training teachers. This presentation will benefit those who are interested in using assessment in new ways to improve teaching and learning.

Dr. Marie Yeo is a Senior Language Specialist at the SEAMEO Regional Language Center (RELC) in Singapore, where she teaches on a range of teacher education programs. For the past 30 years, she has taught English, trained teachers and trainers and managed educational projects in countries including Australia, China, Cambodia, Singapore and Vietnam. Her current areas of interest are Language Assessment, Teacher Professional Development and Blended Learning. Marie is currently Editor-in-Chief of the RELC Journal and her most recent publications include a guide book on teacher professional development, a chapter on flipped learning and a journal article on academic publishing.

Featured Speaker
Prof. Fatchul Mu’in
Lecturer in Literature/ Linguistics
Universitas Lamung Mangkurat, Indonesia
TEFLIN Representative

‘Triggering the learners to speak: Some Suggested Speaking Activities in Learning and Teaching Process’

Speaking is a demanding and threatening skill compared to listening, reading, and writing. Learning speaking means learning, practicing the language and language use, and embracing a variety of other aspects beyond the language itself. Due to this complexity, a lot of learners experience difficulties in learning to speak. For Indonesian learners, in general, such factors as grammar, vocabulary limitation, pronunciation, speech variation, fear of making mistakes are mostly cited as the inhibiting factors. Several factors causing are the tendency of the learners to translate their native language into English and the attempt of the learners to find specific words or phrases to express their ideas. Other crucial factors are nervousness, and lack of both confidence and practice. Most learners do not realize this complexity and only blame their vocabulary limitation as to the primary problem. In this relation, the English language teachers have a high duty to assist the learners and equip them with the necessary for oral communication. In this paper, the presenter will discuss one aspect only; namely, speaking activities in the learning and teaching process.

Prof. Fatchul Mu’in is a Lecturer in Literature/ Linguistics at Universitas Lambung Mangkurat, Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan, Indonesia. He earned his Master of Humanities from Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia and Doctoral degree from Universitas Negeri Malang, East Java, Indonesia. His articles published in the international journals, among others, are: “Experiences of African-Americans as Reflected in Richard Wright’s Native Son 1940 (AWEJ, October 2016); “Phonemic Interference of Local Language in Spoken English by Students of English Department of Lambung Mangkurat University (JLTR, January 2017); “Politeness in Using Banjarese and American English Personal Subject Pronouns by English Department Students of Lambung Mangkurat University, as the second writer (JLTR, March 2017), and “Investigating Teacher Professional Development: English Teachers’ Learning Activities as Learners” (Asian EFL Journal Research Articles. Vol. 20 Issue No. 12.2 December 2018). He has published “Language in Oral Production Perspectives” (2018), “Sociolinguistics: A Language Study in Sociocultural Perspectives’ (2019), and “ Teaching Material for Introduction to Linguistics” (2020).

Featured Speaker
Ms. Magdaline anak Muuk
English teacher
SMK Tebakang, Malaysia
MELTA Representative

‘Project-Based Learning Approach to Enhance Students Communicative Skills’

This study was a classroom action research. It was aimed to explain whether Project Based Learning can improve students’ ability to communicate and complete the projects at their own pace as through learning by doing students could learn the learning process and not only learning the content. Educational Planning and Research Division, Ministry of Education (2014) defines twenty-first century skills as; skills that will help to create Malaysian students who are balanced, resilient, inquisitive, principled, informed, caring, patriotic, as well as effective thinkers, communicators, and team players. Project-based learning (PBL) is defined as a complex task based on challenging questions, students driven where it gives students the opportunity to work independently and give them meaningful learning experiences (Bell, 2010; Thomas, 2000; Railsback, 2002). 60 Form 4 students were involved in this study. The groups were given different tasks with the same four weeks duration to be completed. The students and their projects were assessed through self, peer and public evaluation to provide better awareness of the material, process, and final product.

Ms. Magdaline anak Muuk is an English teacher at SMK Tebakang, Serian, Kuching, Sarawak., Malaysia. She introduced her very own Global Classroom in 2015 which focuses on mini projects. She exposes her students to different learning activities and exposes them to global and cultural connection, project-based learning activities, Sustainable Development Goals and innovation of technology in teaching.

Featured Speaker
Dr. Andrew Tweed
Learning Advisor
Meijo University, Japan

‘Learning beyond the classroom: 21st century resources and practices’

Researchers are increasingly pointing to the benefits of learning beyond the classroom (LBC). One reason to promote LBC is that it is a way to foster learner autonomy. Providing learners with more autonomy can lead to higher levels of motivation for learning (Ryan & Deci, 2017). Another reason to promote LBC is that it has become easier for students to learn outside of traditional classrooms. The development of technology, and in particular, of mobile devices and applications, has led to increased availability of language learning resources around the world (Nunan, 2014). In addition, as international travel has become less expensive, there are now more opportunities for learners to go abroad to use and learn second languages (Kinginger, 2009). Considering these realities, it is important for teachers to know how they can promote LBC to their language students. In this talk, the presenter will introduce a number of resources and practices for LBC. Actual examples, including ones from Cambodian and other Asian contexts, will be shared. The presenter will also discuss ways that teachers can introduce these resources and practices to their students.

Dr. Andrew Tweed is a learning advisor at Meijo University in Nagoya, Japan. Previously he was U.S. Senior English Language Fellow at the National Institute of Education in Cambodia, where he worked as a trainer and curriculum developer. Andrew has also conducted training in Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam. His most recent publications are related to teacher education and learner autonomy. Andrew has an MATESOL from the University of Washington and an Ed.D. in TESOL from Anaheim University.

Featured Speaker
Dr. Pornpimol Sukavatee
Director of English as an International Language and TEFL Program
Chulalongkorn University, Thailand
ThailandTESOL Representative

‘Past, Today, and Future of English Language Teaching in Thailand’

From the past decades, Thailand has put much effort to develop and improve English language ability in Thai learners by including English language as the first foreign language learning in the national curriculum for the mainstream education. To explore and visualize the clear picture of the situation of English language teaching in Thailand together with the language policy, the systematic review of the studies in Thailand focusing on teaching principles, teaching approaches, teaching methods and instructional media implemented in English language instruction was conducted. The data were retrieved from national and international database. The findings yielded the explicit directions of English language teaching in Thailand from the past to the current state and also helped predict the trends in the future. The results can also serve as guidelines for policy makers, educators or researchers in Thailand.

Dr. Pornpimol Sukavatee is a lecturer at the Faculty of Education, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand. She takes the role of International Committee of Thailand TESOL Organization. Currently, she is the English as an International Language Program director and TEFL Program at Chulalongkorn University. She is also the Chair of Foreign Language Teaching Division at the Faculty of Education. Her field of interest is related to curriculum and materials development, technology and language instruction, and literacy instruction.

The CamTESOL Secretariat gratefully acknowledges the support of the following sponsors and exhibitors to the 16th Annual CamTESOL Conference:

For sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities at the 17th Annual CamTESOL Conference in 2021, please contact or visit the 'Partnership Options' section of the CamTESOL website.

The CamTESOL Conference Series

is an initiative of IDP Education

Copyright © 2024 The CamTESOL Conference Series. All Rights Reserved