About

The Professional Development Consortium in Modern Foreign Languages (PDC in MFL) gives teachers access to eight key principles of teaching and learning languages, which are based on research evidence.  The Consortium was set up by researchers at the University of Reading Institute of Education and University of Oxford Department of Education. It is made up of classroom language teachers, teacher trainers and researchers in England. All languages teachers, ITE tutors and other language professionals are welcome to join in the Consortium’s work by joining a local cluster, and/or having a go at one or more of the following suggestions:

  • Explore the website and have a look at the resources and videos - use them as part of a departmental meeting, or teacher training session
  • Try using one or more of the principles in your language lessons or share them with your teacher trainees in skills sessions
  • Pilot our proposed alternative to the National Curriculum Levels – the Speaking and Writing and Listening and Reading Assessment Framework , for use in conjunction with the principles
  • Join an exisiting cluster or create a cluster of MFL teachers from your local area to share in professional development activities. See here for more details.
  • Start your own action research project using one or more of the principles – we can support you in doing this
  • Give us your feedback! We love to hear how the principles have had an impact on ITT courses, language teachers and their students

Here are some of the things we have done so far…

  • Identified 8 research-based principles of language teaching which are relevant to the UK context with a particular relevance to Key Stage 3.
  • Created videos and materials exemplifying these principles in practice in the classroom, and developed this website to make them freely accessible to all.
  • Held seven workshops around the country attended by over 300 teachers from 144 schools in 33 counties in England. Teacher-trainers from 28 universities also attended.
  • Begun a programme of liaising with participating schools to help implement and sustain improved language teaching and learning.
  • Devised a new system of assessment which is being trialled in the schools which attended the workshops.
  • Presented an outline of the project at an MFL steering committee of the DfE.

Click here to go to our latest blog post.

Contact Professor Suzanne Graham: s.j.graham@reading.ac.uk 

Watch a 90 second video of Consortium Teacher Sarah Rae talking about what impact the principles and strategies have had on her teaching:

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