International student in Nova Scotia? There’s an app for that

Nova Scotia Community College is currently looking to develop an app to support international students who are or who wish to study there. The idea is that students are all using smartphones and so it would make sense to provide students with all the information they are looking for (information on study permits, tuition, and health insurance, for example) through the streamlined source of a single app.

Read more in The Chronicle Herald.

What international students want from their professors

This is a survey that any professional in our field should be interested to hear about.

ELS Educational Services recently surveyed 662 international students at 26 American colleges and universities to ask them what they would like their professors to do differently. Here are some of the results:

  • 35% wanted more feedback
  • 33% would like professors to better understand international students’ perspectives
  • 32% would like professors to make classroom materials available after class
  • 32% would like more examples of completed assignments
  • 28% would like professors to use non-US examples
  • .

    Read more in Inside Higher Education.

    Really, Dorothy? Where is home for an international student?

    An interesting new study has come out of the University of British Columbia and argues that International students’ concept of what and where home is shapes their personal plans for where they settle after their studies. “Our study shows that migration plans for international students are far more complex than this binary of stay or return,” said study author Cry Wu.

    Read more.

    15th anniversary love note

    We are celebrating our 15th anniversary this year and we asked for love notes from you to celebrate (and make us feel loved). The prize goes to Darryl Press, a Toronto-area teacher and long time customer, who wrote us a poem! Darryl experience of us is definitely more on a personal and retail level rather than through our North American distribution work, but the sentiment is lovely and heartwarming. Thanks, Darryl!

    Amo,Amas,Amat,Amamus,Amatis,Amant!

    Too verbose ,that would be wrong.

    I remember a smallish shop-

    At the back,a couch,a chaise longue?

    Nicole presiding,friendly,informative,to the point,

    Crikey,she has everything down pat in this joint.

    Fast forward,where?

    To a great new shop,on St. Clair.

    A Pharos to teacher and student alike,

    Visiting it is worth the hike.

    So,Nicole,truth to tell,

    You (et al) have done incredibly well.

    Growing number of international students in Canada are adults with families

    Immigration officials are reporting that the number of “mature adults” applying ot come to Canada as international students is rising dramatically. Most of these students are coming with spouses and children as well. This phenomenon can presumably be explained by the recent changes in Canada’s immigration policies which fast-track immigration for people who come to study in Canada.

    Read more in the Vancouver Sun.

    A thousand new words

    Yesterday, Merriam-Webster announced that they just added 1000 words to their online dictionary. WHAT?!?!? Suddenly we find ourselves wondering what should be in a dictionary, because no doubt there is plenty of slang included as part of the additions. But is a word still slang once it makes it into a dictionary? This could be a very interesting discussion, but it is February and we hardly have the energy for it.

    We will stick to the facts. Here are some of the words that have been added: Seussian, conlang, face-palm, binge-watch, photobomb, humblebrag and EpiPen. Just writing them down, the objections start coming to mind.

    Anyway, read more for yourself.

    Awards highlights: the great things you will find in our catalog

    We here at English Central have always prided ourselves on the fact that we do not sell just any books – we sell great books! (If you recognize the previous sentence from the past two blog entries then all I have to say is bless you for reading!)

    We have 14 publishers that we work with and some of them have been around so long or are so decorated that they really can’t remember what they have won. So, we decided to create a list of highlights of the books in our catalog that have won awards:

    ENGLISH FOR ACADEMIC PURPOSES

    The Transferable Academic Skills Kit (TASK) – Amanda Fava-Verde et al – Garnet Education – Shortlisted for the English Speaking Union English Language Book Award 2013

    English for Specific Academic Purposes (ESAP) – Garnet Education – Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award 2009

    GENERAL ENGLISH

    Global – Lindsay CLandfield – Macmillan Education – Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award 2010

    Fiction in Action: Whodunit – Adam Gray and Marcos Benevides – Abax Publishing – Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award 2010 and Winner of the ELTons, Cambridge ESOL International Award for Innovation 2011

    Backstage Pass – Lesley Ito – Atama-ii – Winner of the Language Learner Literature Award 2015

    BUSINESS ENGLISH AND ESP

    Aviation English – Anna Cowper, Andy Roberts, Henry Emery, James Greenan – Macmillan Education – ELTon winner 2009

    K-12

    Hooray! Let’s Play! – Gunter Gerngross and Herbert Puchta – Helbling Languages – Winner of the ELTon, Excellence in Course Innovation, 2013 AND Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award, Young Learners, 2013

    Sunshine – Garnet Education – Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award, Young Learners, 2011

    METHODOLOGY AND TEACHER RESOURCE BOOKS

    Learning Teaching – Macmillan Education – Winner of the ARELS Frank Bell 1995

    Teaching English Grammar – Macmillan Education – Winner of the ESU English Language Book Award, Best Entry for Teachers, 2010

    Uncovering Grammar – Scott Thornbury – Macmillan Education – The Ben Warren International House Trust Prize 2001

    Dealing with Difficulties – Lindsay Clandfield and Luke Prodromou – Delta Publishing – The Ben Warren International House Trust Prize 2006

    Teaching Unplugged – Scott Thornbury and Luke Meddings – Macmillan Education – ELTons winner, 2010

    Digital Play – Kyle Mawer and Graham Stanley – Delta Publishing – ELTons winner, 2012

    The Developing Teacher – Duncan Foord – Delta Publishing – ESU English Language Book Award, Best Entry for Teachers 2009

    Not too shabby! We are truly honoured to work with our publishers and to promote their fine publications.

    And the award goes to… Garnet Education

    I said it in the previous post and I will say it here again: we here at English Central have always prided ourselves on the fact that we do not sell just any books – we sell great books! We started working with Garnet Education about 10 years ago because they were making quite a name for themselves with their titles, which were exclusively EAP at the time. Generally regarded as trailblazers in EAP publishing, they have more recently expanded their horizons to other areas of ELT. They have done a lot of innovating and so it is a good thing they have gotten some recognition for it!

    We asked General Manager Richard Peacock to list the nods they have gotten and here is what he reported back to us:

    ESAP Series: Winner of the 2009 English Speaking Union English Language Award

    Sunshine: Best Entry for Children in the 2011 English Speaking Union English Language Award

    TASK: Shortlisted for the English Speaking Union English Language Award 2013

    Skills in English (the foundation of all the Skills stable): Highly Commended in the English Speaking Union English Language Award 2004

    Oracle Readers: Wuthering Heights and The Case of the Dead Batsman: Finalists in the Language Learner Literature Awards

    There were also awards at some stage for Access EAP and Upgrade, but I can’t find any details …

    : )

    And on that note, I would like to add that Garnet Education has always been wonderful to work with and eager to cooperate with us on the various ideas we have come up with over the years (like producing American English versions of their books!). Richard is the man in charge and ultimately this cooperation is thanks to him. I personally also appreciate his sense of humour and the colourful terms of affection he uses when speaking to me. Richard, if you are reading this, thank you… and Lori misses you. : )

    And the award goes to…. Helbling English

    We here at English Central have always prided ourselves on the fact that we do not sell just any books – we sell great books! Helbling English (previously known as Helbling Languages) has certainly gotten its fair share of attention despite the fact that they have only been in the ELT business for 12 years. Here is a list of the titles from their catalog that have either won or been nominated for awards:

    The Thinking Train Eltons Nominated 2016, Innovation in learner resources; English Speaking Union – English Language Award – Shortlisted 2016

    Hooray! Let’s Play! Eltons Winner in 2013, Excellence in course innovation; English Speaking Union HRH Duke of Edinburgh – English Language Book Awards –Best Entry 2013 for young Learners (for the Student books)

    For Real Eltons Nominated 2012, Innovation in learner resources (Intermediate level)

    Teaching Young Learners to Think Eltons Nominated 2012, Innovation in teacher resources

    Get on Stage! Eltons Nominated 2013, Innovation in teacher resources

    Something to Say English Speaking Union HRH Duke of Edimburgh – English Language Book Awards – shortlisted 2014

    Seeds of Confidence Eltons Nominated 2011, Cambridge ESOL International Award for Innovation

    Activities for Interactive Whiteboards Eltons Nominated 2010, Cambridge ESOL International Award for Innovation

    A Problem for Prince Percy (The Thinking Train) English Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award Finalist 2016, Young Learners category

    Skater Boy (Helbling Young Readers) English Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award Winner 2014, Young Learners category

    The Leopard and the Monkey (Helbling Young Readers) English Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award Winner 2015, Very Young Learners category

    The Time Capsule (Helbling Readers Red Series) English Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award Finalist 2012, Adolescent & Adult: Elementary category

    The Green Room (Helbling Readers Blue Series) English Reading Foundation Language Learner Literature Award Winner 2013, Adolescent & Adult: Intermediate