English Language teaching and learning continues to face challenges in the intellectual and academic circles. While thinking about the possible solutions to these challenges, it is important to remember that there is no one right way, and currently there are no experts who have accurate answers. The British Council is interested in understanding and documenting these challenges and giving recommendations on various policies and practices in Pakistan.
The British Council organised a series of Policy Dialogue events in collaboration with SPELT (Society of Pakistan English Language Teachers), on “Language in Education in Pakistan” in the three cosmopolitan cities of the country – Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.
The series of these Policy Dialogue events were organised as “Pre-conference Symposiums” led by Hywel Coleman OBE, University of Leeds. We used his report “Teaching and Learning in Pakistan: The Role of Language in Education” as a starting point for the symposium’s discussion.
The symposium was attended by Pakistan’s key educationists in each province and led to the preparation of specific proposals which will be presented to the Government of Pakistan in 2011.
There is a clear realisation that English Language teaching and learning faces unique challenges in Pakistan that demands immediate and innovative solutions. Rapid progress is being made in this area and some promising practices are emerging. These symposiums will uncover challenges as viewed by policy makers, teachers and most importantly learners.
The policy dialogue events will hopefully be an important step towards enhancing the level of education in the country – a collective aim of our partners, educators and managers of education in Pakistan.
‘Teaching and Learning in Pakistan: The Role of Language in Education’ is a report by Hywel Coleman. The British Council commissioned Hywel Coleman to carry out an extensive research across Pakistan in March 2010 about the role of language in Pakistani education and the success and failure of past educational reforms. The report, and a series of Policy Dialogues and Conferences in collaboration with SPELT beginning in October, will be used as the starting point toward shaping specific proposals to be presented to the Government of Pakistan in Spring 2011.
Dr Hywel Coleman is an Honorary Senior Research Fellow in the School of Education at University of Leeds in UK, where he taught International Education from 1987 to 2000. Dr Coleman since then has been a language consultant on several major international projects across the world for the British Council, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the UK Foreign Office. He has over 50 published papers to his name as well as a number of books on language teaching and international education.