Post-Pandemic Language Teaching: What stays and what goes?
The pandemic pivoted many away from traditional F2F teaching practices and rapidly infused technology into academic programs. What can we expect when we return to in-person teaching? We focus on a Post-Pandemic Language Teaching course and showcase instructor actions from the Summer 2021 cohort and preliminary plans from Fall 2021.
The pandemic forced many instructors to pivot away from some traditional teaching practices used in face-to-face learning and infused technology into institutions and programs that were slow to accept online instruction. This process was fraught with anxiety and stress for some, but it has also allowed for unforeseen opportunities of engagement and showcased the transformative power of certain technology-enabled pedagogies to transform our classroom practices.
Technology can promote better teaching and learning practices by bringing into focus pedagogical practices that are more student-centered, effective, and/or equitable (Ertmer and Ottenbreit-Leftwich, 2013). Technological transformation happens in an educator’s practice when a new technology opens the possibility for the adoption of a different pedagogical approach. In addition, technology can bring about other types of transformation that can have a significant impact: technology can make things easier, faster, and more convenient; it can automate and simplify processes; it can create a more equitable learning environment; and it can free a lot of time.
What can we expect when we return to in-person teaching? Will faculty return to their old practices wholesale? Or can sustained transformation be intentionally promoted? To support language faculty in the transition back to in-person teaching, we created a professional development course called Post-Pandemic Language Teaching, enabling language instructors to reflect on their remote teaching experiences, identify technology-enabled practices that have the most transformative potential, and design an intentional “new normal” for what language instruction might look like in the near future. This presentation will provide an overview of the initiative and showcase the actions taken by instructors who participated in the course in Summer 2021 and preliminary actions planned by the Fall 2021 cohort.