The Teacher I Want to Be, Should Be and Fear Becoming
Southern Cross University College
EAP teachers in university direct-entry programs are both language and genre specialists; they are teachers of academic and digital skills and literacies (Murray, 2018; Roche, 2017), and they are often the first point of contact for international students experiencing isolation and other emotional challenges (Ding & Bruce, 2017; Kahu & Nelson, 2018; Wilson, 2017). The rewarding but challenging, multi-faceted role played by EAP teachers in Australian university direct-entry programs can prove transformative in the lives of their students, but there is little research into how EAP teachers see their professional roles as educators. Understanding the identity of this cohort has never been more important. Their own transformative journeys as educators since March, 2020 and their ability to ‘pivot’, ‘adapt’ and be resilient in times of great turmoil in the sector may prove key to ensuring a sustainable future for ELICOS post-COVID-19.
Sharon Leslie is the Director of English Language Program at Southern Cross University, Australia. She has worked for almost two decades in English language education and assessment in Australia. Before joining Southern Cross University in 2015, Sharon worked as an advisory visiting teacher for Education Queensland and as a teacher and manager in TAFE and ELICOS Colleges. Sharon also worked for eight years with QUT as an IELTS Examiner. She holds a Master of Education (TESOL), a Bachelor of Education (Honours) a Graduate Diploma of Education and a Bachelor of Arts (Applied Linguistics). Sharon’s research interests include language assessment, international student engagement, online learning and teacher professional development. The latter is the focus of her doctoral studies. Sharon is on the management committee of the Queensland Association of TESOL (Qatesol) and the Australian Council of TESOL Associations (ACTA).
CPD points: 1