KATHERINE THORNTON (OTEMON GAKUIN UNIVERSITY)

FOSTERING ENGLISH COMMUNICATION SKILLS WITH AN EXTRA CURRICULAR SPEAKING INCENTIVE PROGRAMME : CURRICULUM AND MATERIALS DEVELOPMENT

Many students learning English in EFL environments have limited opportunities to use the language outside the classroom. This poster reports on the "E-CO Passport", an incentive programme developed by the Faculty for International Liberal Arts at a social sciences university in Japan, in collaboration with the institution's self-access centre. The programme is designed to encourage students to participate in speaking practice activities at the self-access centre, and to reflect upon their experiences using the language. The presenter will explain how the programme works and how the different speaking activities are organised. Data from student participation rates will be used to discuss the effects of using the Passport - both as a required, graded part of the curriculum and as an extra credit programme - and learners' attitudes to the programme will be investigated through student survey data collected over three years.

Katherine Thornton is Associate Professor at Otemon Gakuin University, Japan, where she works as a learning advisor and director of the self-access centre. Her research interests include language policy, self-directed learning and language learning advising.