Editor’s note: In this piece, Dr. Yehia El-Ezabi details his recent trip to the UAE. Please note that TIRF does not incur travel expenses for such trips.
On Friday, April 18, 2014, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), TIRF Trustee Emeritus Yehia El-Ezabi and former Trustee Ali Al Sharhan had the distinct pleasure of meeting with His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan bin Mubarak Al Nahayan, UAE Minister of Culture, Youth, and Community Development. On behalf of the TIRF Board, Dr. El-Ezabi and Dr. Al Sharhan presented to Sheikh Nahayan the landmark book entitled Teaching and Learning English in the Arabic-Speaking World. The book, edited by Kathleen M. Bailey and Ryan M. Damerow, and jointly published by TIRF and Routledge, was dedicated as a festschrift to Sheikh Nahayan. The Sheikh was recognized in this way for his generous gift to the Foundation, which funded the pioneering research of nine scholars selected by TIRF as “Sheikh Nahayan Doctoral Fellows.” These Fellows’ research investigates key issues in the teaching and learning of English in Arabic-speaking countries, in fulfillment of the requirements for their doctoral degrees at leading universities.
At the time of publication, eight of the nine Fellows had completed their research and had received their doctoral degrees. Each of these nine Fellows contributed chapters to the book, based on their dissertations.
In the words of Professor El-Ezabi, “The Sheikh was visibly pleased to see the book as a concrete outcome of the Fellowship program. It was one of those moments which captured the meaning and value of a clear vision and a fulfilled initiative.”
The initiative started some years ago when Sheikh Nahayan, then UAE Minister of Higher Education and Research, and Chancellor of the UAE University, was briefed on the mission of TIRF. The Sheikh has long believed that investment in education is the best investment for the future, and that English, both as an international language and as a language of instruction in various subject-matter areas, is a crucial component of that investment. As a dedicated leader, his response to and support of TIRF’s mission was immediate.
It is noteworthy that the research made possible under the Fellowship program was conducted in six Arab countries: Egypt, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. However, many of the research findings extend well beyond the geographical boundaries of these countries. Thus, the Sheikh Nahayan Fellowships have contributed to the growth of the research network of English language education scholars in the Arab World. In fact, one of the first three Sheikh Nahayan Doctoral Fellows became the doctoral supervisor of one of the last three!
The volume dedicated to Sheikh Nahayan is the first book-length publication produced by TIRF. It is part of an agreement with Routledge (Taylor & Francis) to publish studies completed by TIRF grant recipients. Further details about the book, including how to order, can be found by clicking here.
Two conferences are set to be held later this year in Argentina. Both events will take place from September 18-20, 2014. The Asociación de Profesores de Inglés de Santiago del Estero (APISE) is organizing FAAPI’s (Federación Argentina de Profesores de Inglés) XXXIX Annual Conference. This event is one of the most important meetings in Argentina, as it offers […]
One aspect of TIRF’s mission includes influencing language policies around the globe that have an impact on language education. More specifically, this part of our mission states that TIRF seeks “to influence the formation and implementation of appropriate language education policies, recognizing the importance of indigenous languages and cultures worldwide, and of English as an […]
We are delighted to announce that the British Council has awarded TIRF a Research Grant of £ 15,000 (fifteen thousand pounds) to the 2014 TIRF Doctoral Dissertation Grants program. The TIRF-British Council grants are intended to support candidates at universities in resource-poor environments (all countries on the OECD DAC list of developing countries). These funds […]
We are pleased to announce a new book series, Global Research on Teaching and Learning English, co-published by TIRF and Routledge. This series showcases research by young scholars from around the world, whose studies have been funded by grants from TIRF, awarded through carefully vetted international competitions. Since 2002, TIRF has commissioned and/or funded research […]
At the September 2013 Board of Trustees meeting, Dr. James E. Alatis (known to us as Jim) was honored as a Trustee Emeritus. At that event, Trustees Kathi Bailey, Richard Boyum, MaryAnn Christison, and Dick Tucker shared their thoughts with Jim about his influence on the Foundation and the field. Jim’s wife, Penny, and son, […]
Editor’s note: In this piece, Trustee Joe Lo Bianco reports on TIRF’s endorsement of two important international language policy statements. As part of TIRF’s role to encourage language policies which promote best practices in English teaching and research around the world, the Board of Trustees monitors developments that have the potential to shape the […]
The British Council has released a new study regarding the role of intercultural skills in the workplace. The paper, entitled Culture at Work: The Value of Intercultural Skills in the Workplace, can be downloaded for free by clicking here. To provide a preview, the report’s executive summary is included below: The modern workplace is increasingly […]
TIRF is pleased to announce the release of its 2013 commissioned study, A Case for Online English Language Teacher Education. This paper investigates a range of online professional development opportunities offered by institutions around the world. We would like to recognize TIRF Trustee Dr. David Nunan and Anaheim University for their financial support of this […]
The 2013 TESOL Convention is just around the corner. The Convention will be held at the Dallas Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, USA. At this year’s TIRF session, Dr. Denise Murray, Professor Emeritus at Macquarie University and San José State University in California, and TIRF Trustee Dr. MaryAnn Christison will co-present on TIRF’s most recent […]
The following piece was taken from TIRF’s December issue of TIRF Today, the Foundation’s monthly newsletter. In her piece, Kathi Bailey, President of TIRF, reflects on “Every December,” and encourages readers to read TIRF’s year-end report, which can be viewed by clicking here. Monday, December 17, 2012 As another year comes to a close, I […]
Marti Estell is the US State Department’s new representative to the TIRF Board of Trustees. We welcomed her to our recent Board meeting in White Plains, New York, via Skype. She provided the Trustees a report on a new initiative between the US State Department and the TESOL International Association. Marti began her post as […]
Alelo means “tongue” or “language” in Hawaiian. Hawaii is a crossroads for languages and cultures throughout the Pacific Rim, and thus is a metaphor for Alelo’s mission. Alelo develops computer-based learning products focused on communication skills and cross cultural competencies needed for particular jobs and missions. The platform uses social simulations in which learners […]
Earlier this month on Wednesday, July 12th in São Paulo, Brazil, thanks to Trustee Lorraine de Matos and her wonderful team at the Cultura Inglesa there, we hosted our second “TIRF Event” in Brazil. (The first was in 2005, and you can read about it by clicking here.) The event was a panel discussion entitled […]
We are pleased to announce that TIRF’s commissioned research paper, English at Work: An Analysis of Case Reports about English Language Training for the 21st-century Workforce, by Tony Fitzpatrick and Robert O’Dowd, is now available to download. The executive summary of the paper will continue to be available on TIRF’s website as well. The edited […]
For any individual who missed TIRF’s presentation last month at the TESOL Convention, you may now watch the slidecast from the event. (In general, a slidecast features a PPT presentation with the speaker’s recorded voice to accompany the slides.) The entire presentation, which includes a question-and-answer session at the end of the talk, can be […]
At its board meeting in Philadelphia on March 28th, the TIRF Board elected three new Trustees. Here is some information about them. Andrew B. Sugerman is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Disney English in Shanghai, China. He received a Master of Business Administration with High Honors from The University of Chicago, Booth Graduate […]
At the TESOL Convention in Philadelphia this past week, TIRF launched its latest commissioned study, English at Work: An Analysis of Case Reports about English Language Training for the 21st-century Workforce. After a brief “meet and greet,” the study was summarized by co-author Tony Fitzpatrick, who noted several high points of the analysis of twenty […]
TIRF Trustee MaryAnn Christison, Professor of Linguistics at the University of Utah, was recently honored with the James Alatis award “in recognition of outstanding and extended service to TESOL.” In making the award, TESOL President Dr. Christine Coombe sited MaryAnn’s seven-year term of service on the TESOL Board of Directors, including being President from 1997-1998, […]
You are cordially invited to attend the TIRF presentation at the TESOL Convention in Philadelphia. The main presenter will be Tony Fitzpatrick, one of the authors of TIRF’s new monograph, English at Work: An Analysis of Case Reports of English Language Training for the 21st-century Workforce. He will summarize the literature review, explain the research […]
At the 2011 TESOL Convention held in New Orleans this past March, several TIRF Board members participated in a panel presentation entitled, “Regional Perspectives on English: Current Status and Future Trends.” The panelists addressed the current status of English and predicted future trends in various parts of Asia, Europe, Africa, and Latin America. Issues included […]
International companies rely on the language skills of their staff to grow and compete across borders, but more research needs to be done to understand the role of languages in business and to develop effective training. This is the finding of a report published by The International Research Foundation for English Language Education (TIRF), a […]
The International Research Foundation is developing a series of reports that addresses key, unanswered questions regarding policies and practices in English language education worldwide. The first of these reports, “The Impact of English and Plurilingualism in Global Corporations,” was presented at the 2009 TESOL Convention in Denver. To see a summary of this report, please click […]
On April 3, 2008, the TIRF Board of Trustees hosted a breakfast at the Sheraton New York in New York City, honoring TIRF’s supporters, reviewers, and grant recipients. The breakfast was held in conjunction with the international TESOL convention. This year TIRF celebrates its 10th year of existence. Kathleen Bailey, TIRF trustee, introduced the program […]
On March 22, 2007, the TIRF Board of Trustees hosted a breakfast in Seattle, Washington, USA, honoring TIRF’s supporters, reviewers, and grant recipients. The breakfast was held in conjunction with the international TESOL convention. The guest of honor was long time donor and supporter of TIRF activities, Betty Azar, who has funded TIRF Priority Research […]
On March 16, 2006, the TIRF Board of Trustees hosted a breakfast in Tampa, Florida honoring TIRF’s supporters, reviewers, and grant recipients. Joan gave an inspirational speech explaining why she gives to TIRF. Penny and Jim were recognized for their continued work with TIRF since before its inception as a foundation. After welcome remarks from […]
June 19, 2006 Hyatt Hotel, Montreal, Canada On June 19, 2006, the TIRF Board of Trustees hosted a wine and cheese reception at the 2006 AAAL Convention in Montreal, Canada. The reception honored TIRF’s supporters and introduced TIRF to newcomers. Patsy Duff, Chair of the Research Advisory Committee, gave a short presentation entitled, “What is […]
Centro Brasileiro Britanico TESOL International Research Foundation Simpósio Inglês no processo educacional: ampliando oportunidades e promovendo mobilidade social April 25-26, 2005 Participants and special guests included the Cultura Inglesa President and members of its Executive board, British Council Directors SP, USA embassy/consulate staff, British consulate staff, São Paulo Secretaries of Education (both state and municipality), […]
March 12, 2005 Dubai, United Arab Emirates The first TIRF Dissemination Event took place in Dubai, UAE on Saturday March 12, 2005. It was hosted by the UAE Ministry of Education under the auspices of the Minister, Sheikh Nahayan, who delegated the Undersecretary of Education, Dr. Jamal Al Muhairi, to inaugurate the event which was […]
On March 31, 2005, the TIRF Board of Trustees hosted a breakfast in San Antonio, Texas, honoring TIRF’s supporters, reviewers, and grant recipients. The guest of honor was long-term TIRF Board member and donor Joan Morley, Professor Emerita from the University of Michigan. After welcome remarks from TIRF Chair, Neil Anderson, Diane Larsen-Freeman honored Joan […]
The 2004 breakfast honoring TIRF’s supporters was held in Long Beach, California. The guest of honor was Marge Campbell, wife of Russell N. Campbell. Doug Brown talked about why he gives to TIRF.
Front row: Joan Morley (University of Michigan), Donald Freeman (School for International Training), and Patsy Lightbown (Concordia University). Second row: Koffi Edoh (World Bank), Ray Clifford (Interagency Language Roundtable), Art Wise (NCATE), and Kees de Bot (Nijmegen University). Standing: Patricia Duff (University of British Columbia), Donna Christian (Center for Applied Linguistics), Roy Gilbert (Oxford University […]