Pre-Course Task

When you apply to do a Delta course, you are usually asked to complete a Pre-Course Task. For some training centres, this might form part of your application, for others it is more of a task to get you thinking before beginning the course. For some centres it will be used for both of the above. Very often its purpose is to function as a bridge between the application process and the start of the course.

The whole idea behind Delta is to re-evaluate your teaching and the principles behind it. As such, the Pre-Course Task usually gets you:

  • To think about how you understand what learning is and what it involves
  • To think about how you understand what teachingis and what it involves

More often than not, the above requires you to consider:

  • Activities you use in class and why you use them
  • Experience with various ELT methods
  • Reflection on your own language learning or learning in general
  • Second Language Acquisition theory

Further Reading

Follow this link for an example of a Pre-Course Task concerning Learning

Follow this link for an example of Pre-Course Task concerning Teaching

Pre-Course Task: About Learning

What do you think are the ideal conditions for learning a language? 

A question like this could lead to a variety of answers with the focus on many different conditions and areas. However, in such a case it might be beneficial to concentrate on the most basic conditions which are common across all advice for language learning, namely:DELTA Series Image

  • Active Receptive Engagement
  • Active Productive Engagement

Whether a language is being learnt by attending a course, using a teach-yourself guide or simply extracting language from a friend or a newspaper, in all three cases the Target Language can only be extracted, processed and acquired if the learner actively engages with the language.

This means that a learner could learn a language completely on their own or with a teacher – in either case, any language they are exposed to must be under the condition that elements of it are later engaged, exploited and explored.

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Pre-Course Task: About Teaching

As part of the preparation for the course I have been asked to write up my opinion on a number of statements. I have seen these kinds of statements before: they aim to challenge the status quo on many aspects of teaching which teachers have reached several years after their pre-service training. What do you think of my responses? What would be your reaction to these statements? DELTA Series Image

(1) I used to drill a lot and do lots of controlled practice. Now I get them to practise in a much more relaxed way. 

Drilling was born out of the Audio-Lingual method, whose theory of language learning was based on the behaviourist approach to psychology i.e. language was acquired through repetition and reinforcement.  Continue reading