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In This Together

Teachers' Experiences with Transnational, Telecollaborative Language Learning Projects

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Edited By Melinda Ann Dooly Owenby and Robert O'Dowd

This book provides a nexus between research and practice through teachers’ narratives of their experiences with telecollaboration. The book begins with a chapter outlining the pedagogical and theoretical underpinnings of telecollaboration (also known as Virtual Exchange), followed by eight chapters that explain telecollaborative project design, materials and activities as well as frank discussions of obstacles met and resolved during the project implementation. The projects described in the volume serve as excellent examples for any teacher or education stakeholder interested in setting up their own telecollaborative exchange.

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About the authors

← 226 | 227 →

About the authors

Granada Bejarano Sánchez is recently graduated from the teacher education programme at the Faculty of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, having specialized in the Teaching of English as a Foreign Language (TEFL).

Alexandra Bonet Pueyo currently works in INS Torre del Palau, a state school in Catalonia, Spain. She has been working as an SLA teacher for about 20 years, most of them in the state system. She has recently participated as a teacher trainer in LAB(tred)17.

Sara Bruun is an English and German language teacher in grades 6–9 at Furutorpsskolan in Hässleholm, Sweden. She has also been invited to give lectures at different universities and education centres on digital learning. Her class projects have won national awards along with teaching awards. In 2016 she was awarded the Royal Vittoria Academy Prize for Honorable Teacher Education. And in 2017 she won the Teacher Prize in IT & Digitalization. Additionally she has written two books: Digital Workstations in the Classroom: Daring to Leap and Classroom meets the world: Authentic, Thematic and Digital.

Dr. Melinda Dooly is senior lecturer and researcher at the School of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. She has investigated and published widely on issues related to teacher education and language education mediated through technology. She is lead researcher of a Spanish Ministry funded project on 21st century competences in education (KONECT). She has taught in different countries worldwide, including an honorary lectureship at the Institute of Education University College London. She is co-editor, along with Dr. Robert O’Dowd, of the book series entitled: Telecollaboration in Education.

Anaïs García-Martínez is a student teacher in her last year of the Primary Teacher Education at the Faculty of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. She spent one semester in Belfast to improve her language and ← 227 | 228 → intercultural skills, and she is currently finishing her degree, with a minor in English Language Teaching and working as a foreign language teacher, for both children and adults.

Gerard Giménez Manrique is recently graduated from the teacher education programme at the Faculty of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, having specialized in the Teaching of English as a Foreign Language (TEFL).

Maria Gracia-Téllez is a trainee teacher finishing up her last year of a her undergraduate degree in Primary Teacher Education, with a minor in English Teaching for Primary Education at Faculty of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Currently, she is teaching English in a private language school to both children and youth in Barcelona. She also has experience working with adults with functional diversity and with children as a playtime coordinator.

Jennie Ingelsson is an undergraduate student at Malmö University in Sweden, studying for her Bachelor in Primary Education. She expects to graduate in June 2018. She has taken an interest in intercultural meetings through her teaching practicum placement at a multicultural primary school in a highly segregated part of Malmö. She sees telecollaboration as a way to build bridges between cultures even within the same country.

Anna Linder is an undergraduate student at Malmö University in Sweden, studying for her Bachelor in Primary Education. She expects to graduate in June 2018. She has previous telecollaborative experience working with Malmö University’s buddy program and organising and meeting with students from across the globe. During her third year at the university she completed an exchange semester at Australian Catholic University in Brisbane, expanding her intercultural competence even further.

Dr. Dolors Masats Viladoms is a teacher-trainer and researcher at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and a consultor for the Ministry of Education and Culture of Andorra in the design of a project-based cross disciplinary curriculum. As a member of GREIP (Research Centre for Plurilingual Teaching & Interaction) she leads or participates in numerous classroom-based national and international research projects in the field of ← 228 | 229 → discourse analysis applied to language learning in multilingual and multicultural milieus.

Maria Mont is a primary education teacher with many years of experience working with early childhood and primary education students in a state school in Spain. She also works as an associate professor at the Faculty of Education, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain. She is a member of GREIP (Research Centre for Plurilingual Teaching & Interaction) at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.

Anna Morcilo Salas is a primary education teacher. She graduated from with a Primary Education Degree from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in 2016. Her degree was in the English-medium courses and she also took a minor in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) during the last year of her studies. After graduating, Anna worked as an English and music teacher for kindergarten students for one year, after which she moved to the Thai-Myanmar border to teach migrant and refugee students from Myanmar.

Dr. Robert O’Dowd is senior lecturer and researcher for English as a Foreign Language and Applied Linguistics at the University of León, Spain. He has taught at universities in Ireland, Germany and Spain and has published widely on the application of collaborative online learning in university education. His most recent publication is the co-edited volume Online Intercultural Exchange Policy, Pedagogy, Practice for Routledge. He recently coordinated INTENT – an award-winning project financed by the European Commission aimed at promoting Virtual Exchange in European Higher Education and is currently the lead researcher on the European Commission’s Erasmus plus KA3 project Evaluating and Upscaling Telecollaborative Teacher Education (EVALUATE). He is also president of the UNICollaboration academic organization for telecollaboration and virtual exchange (www.unicollaboration.org).

Dr. Randall Sadler is an Associate Professor of Linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he teaches courses on telecollaboration and language learning, virtual worlds and language learning and the teaching of L2 reading and writing. He is also the Director of the Illinois Teaching English as a Second Language and ESL Programs. His ← 229 | 230 → main research area is on the role of technology in language learning, with a particular focus on how CMC and Virtual Worlds may be used to enhance that process. He has published in these areas in journals including the Journal of English for Academic Purposes, CALICO Journal, ReCALL, Language Learning & Technology, Computers & Education, ELT, and in numerous edited volumes. His latest book, Virtual Worlds, Telecollaboration, and Language Learning: From Theory to Practice is published by Peter Lang. He is also the co-owner of the EduNation Islands, which are located in the Virtual World of Second Life, where he may often be found in the guise of his avatar Randall Renoir.