June 2016
Teaching in Practice Readers' Poll Upcoming Events
Resource for Teaching [an error occurred while processing this directive]Exam Services Burning Questions



Why does integrated skills approach make your teaching more communicative and learner-centred? Read on


Looking for practical ideas on how to integrate reading, listening and speaking activities in one lesson? Find out here


Two new British Council Understanding English MOOC courses start on 6th June and 18th July. Register for free now!

Teaching in Practice


Are you a reading, writing, listening or speaking teacher? Do you focus on one skill only and think this approach is always effective? Read this article to learn more about an alternative way of teaching English – TEACHING INTEGRATED SKILLS – that can help you make your classes more communicative and learner-centred.

Click here to read the full story

Readers' Poll

What do you think of the integrated skills approach? Please choose one only:

1) I am a one-skill teacher and am happy to continue teaching this way.
2) I am a one-skill teacher but would like to try integrating several skills in my classes.
3) I already teach multiple skills and find this approach very useful.

Click here to vote

Teaching in Practice


Do you feel inspired to try the integrated skills approach in your next English class? This article offers you everything you need to get started – links to ready-made materials, a step-by-step guide for designing your own activities, as well as practical tips and ideas on how to make integrated skills approach work with your students.

Click here to read the full story

Upcoming Events

Exploring English: Language and Culture free MOOC course starts on 6 June.

The course will use short videos to present a different topic each week, including English as a global language, the environment, entrepreneurship and literature. Filmed in Great Britain, these videos will help the learners develop their listening skills as they watch authentic examples of people speaking English. An experienced tutor will examine some of the language used in the videos and will draw learners' attention to useful points that will help them improve their spoken and written English.

This course is aimed at non-native English speakers who have studied English to around intermediate level (approximately B1 on the CEFR). It is free for everyone and will be run over 6 weeks, starting from 6th June.

Click here to learn


Exploring English: Magna Carta free MOOC course starts on 18th July.

How did a peace treaty signed by an English king in 1215 become such an important symbol of liberty and human rights? This free online course will start by looking at the events that led to the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215, before examining the role the Magna Carta has played in shaping history – from American independence to liberation movements around the world.

At each step of the course, a video tutor and team of educators will guide the learners through the topic and introduce a language focus, by looking at some examples of English in use in videos and texts.

Follow this link to register for the course here. The course is free and runs over 3 weeks starting on 18th July.

Register here

Resource for Teaching

Highlights from the 2016 Birmingham IATEFL Conference for English language teachers.

Catch up with what you missed from the 2016 Birmingham IATEFL Conference for English language teachers. Watch the plenary sessions, a selection of conference talks and over 50 interviews with presenters and conference delegates plus highlights from the 50th IATEFL Annual Conference here

Exam Services

2016 July to September IELTS for UKVI test dates released

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New UKVI test centre in Beijing

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IELTS for UKVI (Academic) delivered on computer released

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New UKVI test centre in Shanghai

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Burning Questions!

Do you have questions about teaching, English or IELTS that you would really love an answer to? Send them to colin.barnett@britishcouncil.org.cn or olena.rossi@britishcouncil.org.cn

Remember, we also have a Frequently Asked Questions list on www.chinaielts.org, for you to visit!

IELTS candidates and their teachers often wonder about the role and responsibilities of IELTS examiners. Here we answer some frequently asked questions.

Can a non-native speaker / Chinese become an IELTS examiner?

Yes, they can. Examiners are not recruited according to their nationality but according to their qualifications. You can find more information about the IELTS examiner recruitment by following this link here

What effect does the examiner have on the IELTS exam?

Examiners rate candidate writing and speaking performance against well-defined assessment criteria. They undergo rigorous training and are constantly monitored to ensure that their ratings are consistent and reliable. You can find more about how IELTS is scored by following this link here

Does the score an examiner gives depend on his attitude towards the candidates?

No, it doesn't. Candidate nationality, age, appearance, body language, facial expression, etc. do not have any effect on the ratings. Candidate performance is rated only against the assessment criteria which can be found on ielts.org website.

Previous Issues: October 2015 丨 November 2015 丨 February 2016 丨 April 2016 

Please contact us for any questions: Colin.Barnett@britishcouncil.org.cn.