The Online Professional English Network (OPEN) Program offers two types of professional development opportunities for English language educators: Global Online Courses and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). The OPEN Program Courses are freely open for any interested participants. For more information about OPEN Program Courses, please visit the Online Professional English Network (OPEN) Program website https://www.openenglishprograms.org/.
All OPEN Programs courses use the latest in instructional technology to provide participants with an interactive distance-learning experience, and are designed to familiarize participating teachers with current methods and issues in the field of English as a Foreign Language.
The Online Professional English Network (OPEN) Program also connects participants with U.S. English language teaching experts and creates a professional network of international colleagues.
- Integrating Critical Thinking Skills into the Exploration of Culture in an EFL Setting
- Teaching Grammar Communicatively
- Using Educational Technology in the English Language Classroom
- Teaching English to Young Learners
- Professional Development for Teacher Trainers
- Content-based Instruction
- TESOL Methodology
- Assessment of English Language Learners
Integrating Critical Thinking Skills into the Exploration of Culture in an EFL Setting: Exploration of culture in an EFL setting requires helping students engage in authentic situations to develop the ability to navigate across a variety of cultures. This intercultural ability requires language choices and awareness of oneself as a cultural being. It also requires critical thinking skills, which are themselves culturally defined. Using experiential learning as the organizational model, this course will engage participants in analyzing personal experiences, media, EFL textbooks, and classrooms to develop the capacity to think critically about the cultural assumptions and viewpoints embedded in their teaching content and process. After examining themselves as cultural beings and assessing learners’ needs and goals, participants will develop a concrete teaching lesson that reflects their view of teaching critical thinking and intercultural competence in their particular context.
Teaching Grammar Communicatively: In this practice-oriented course, participants will explore how to adapt grammar instruction to meet their students’ needs. They will also focus on integrating grammar instruction with teaching language skills, varying grammar instruction to meet the needs of large, mixed ability classes, and using available technology effectively to enhance grammar learning inside and outside the classroom. Participants will discuss different challenges their learners may have with learning grammar, and discover how they can help learners use grammar to improve fluency and accuracy.
Using Educational Technology in the English Language Classroom: This course is designed to help English language teaching professionals around the world acquire and maintain basic knowledge and skills in technology for professional purposes through hands-on learning. It will help teachers integrate pedagogical knowledge and skills with technology to enhance their language teaching and learning through their reading, discussion, and creation of new learning activities. The course will help participants apply technology in record keeping, feedback, and assessment, and use technology to improve communication, collaboration, and efficiency by participating in online discussion and presentation.
Teaching English to Young Learners: This course is designed to introduce participants to the theory and practice of teaching young learners (7 – 12 years old) and very young learners (under 7) in the EFL classroom. Participants will investigate approaches for teaching language within a meaningful context as well as different techniques for making language input comprehensible and encouraging student participation. They will also look at the major principles that govern language teaching based on all four skills – listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Through individual learner-centered activities, virtual collaborations and discussions, and group activities with learning teams, participants in this course will explore various aspects, from theory to practice, of teaching EFL to children.
Professional Development for Teacher Trainers: This course is designed for both novice and experienced teacher trainers. Participants will develop and polish their skills and knowledge base of evidence-based methods for delivering comprehensive, engaging, and relevant teacher trainings. Learners will be introduced to methods for crafting, presenting, and evaluating effective teacher training workshops so they can apply concepts and theories to the production of impactful teacher training in their local context.
Content-based Instruction: This course is designed for teachers who are already teaching — or are preparing soon to teach – content-based instruction (CBI) courses in English. CBI courses present teachers with the challenge of balancing the teaching of both language and content. The ideal way to strike this balance will differ, depending on the teaching context. This course is intended to help its participants meet those challenges by guiding participants through a series of practical, hands-on activities, which are supported by the necessary background and theoretical information, to prepare participants for future decision-making and problem-solving in the area of CBI.
TESOL Methodology: This course is designed to provide participants with current methodologies for teaching English learners (ELs) of different ages in many learning contexts. Participants will discuss and practice a wide variety of strategies and techniques for teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL). While exploring best practices for teaching listening, speaking, reading, and writing, including grammar and vocabulary, participants will learn how to create an effective and communicative language classroom for all learners. In addition, participants will examine what best practices means in the context of teaching English in the 21st century, where English is an international language, and the use of English incorporates modern technologies.
Assessment of English Language Learners: This is a practical online course for busy educators or “participants” who want to improve their teaching practices. It is for non-native English speaking teachers who are in the American English (AE) E-Teacher Program.
The course is 5 weeks long. All activities are asynchronous (you can do them any time before the due date), and are open to participants any time anywhere through the Canvas learning management system. Course materials are also available as a downloadable packet each week for participants who want to work offline part of the time.
- Introduce and explore current methodological concepts and issues in the English as a Foreign Language field
- Provide an innovative distance-learning experience that uses the latest technology
- Connect participants with U.S. English language teaching experts and creates a professional network of international colleagues
See Program Details for more information.
Eligibility and Application Overview
The Online Professional English Network (OPEN) Program is open to non-U.S. citizens living outside the United States. For Global Online Courses, the program is open by nomination only. Interested English language professionals should contact the Public Affairs section of their local U.S. Embassy or their Regional English Language Office for up-to-date information. U.S. Embassies manage the selection and nomination of candidates. The Office of English Language Programs does not accept direct applications.
The OPEN Program Courses are freely open for any interested participants. For more information about the OPEN Program, please visit the OPEN Program website https://www.openenglishprograms.org/.
Candidates should be highly motivated teachers, teacher trainers, or ministry officials who are both dedicated to their own professional development and willing to share their knowledge with colleagues. Qualified candidates should:
- Be a citizen of and reside in the nominating country at the time of the course
- Not hold dual citizenship in the United States
- Have the ability to complete academic work at a U.S. university level (CEFR approximately B2)
- Have at least 8-10 hours per week to devote to coursework
- Have regular access (4-5 times per week) to a reliable, internet-enabled device
- Have an understanding of English technical terms
- Have basic technology skills related to creating usernames and passwords, using credentials to log in to secured websites, using email, searching the internet, and accessing and managing electronic files (e.g., pdf, MS Word, Excel), including downloading and uploading files.
- Have the ability to type in English well enough to participate in online discussions and submit written assignments in a timely manner
If a participant feels that they cannot complete a course for any reason, at any time, they must notify FHI 360 and the U.S. Embassy as soon as possible, explaining why they cannot complete the course. Withdrawal requests will be considered on a case by case basis, and participants may still be eligible for participation in future courses if extenuating circumstances exist.
Participants whose withdrawal requests do not meet the criteria of extenuating circumstances may not be eligible to participate in the program in the future. Future eligibility is determined by the nominating U.S. Embassy.