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"Future of ELT in the Middle East"

As an intern at Pearson Middle East, I supported Pearson Middle East in the development of an important research project from January 2021 to May 2021. The research culminated in the following report which explores the future of English Language Teaching (ELT) in the Middle East, focusing on the shift towards online and hybrid learning models due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It highlights educators' challenges in adapting course content for online and face-to-face delivery, engaging students online, and managing student behavior. The study reveals a preference among educators for creating their own materials and emphasizes the need for professional development in content creation and digital infrastructure. It suggests that the role of traditional textbooks may diminish in favor of more versatile and engaging digital resources.

VR in Higher Education

This research proposal aims to examine the impact of a 3D immersive learning environment, Virbela, on the engagement and learning of female Emirati students at a public women's college in the UAE. The study is motivated by the shift to online learning due to the pandemic and the cultural taboos around female students appearing on camera, which has led to decreased student engagement and performance. The proposal outlines a research design involving observations, surveys, and interviews to compare student experiences on Virbela and traditional video-conferencing platforms, aiming to improve online learning engagement and outcomes.

Designing Inclusive Online Learning Experiences

The proposal outlines a professional development (PD) course for faculty at the Higher Colleges of Technology, focusing on designing inclusive online learning experiences using the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework. Targeting English Communications faculty, the course aims to enhance inclusion in online learning environments. It will be delivered online, incorporating UDL principles to support diverse learners, including those with disabilities. The course emphasizes collaborative learning, application of UDL in course design, and practical outcomes like UDL-friendly content and activities, fostering an inclusive academic environment for all students.

Integrating 21st Century Skills in English Assessments

The paper proposes integrating design-thinking into the curriculum and assessments of the English Communications program at the Higher Colleges of Technology in the UAE. It aims to address academic dishonesty, enhance student engagement, and align the program with the country's focus on innovation and entrepreneurship. The proposal includes upskilling instructors, modifying the research project to be problem-based and collaborative, and incorporating a design-thinking assessment. This approach is expected to make students less inclined to engage in dishonest practices and add value to the program by making it more relevant and competitive.


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Blackboard Digital Teaching Symposium

I presented on a course I developed called “Hands ON/Screens OFF: Mini-Projects in Creativity,” a 3-credit hour PD course in which participants receive a grab bag with project materials and work on weeklong, creative “mini-projects.” The presentation explored how the facilitator helped create a sense of community through a variety of approaches through completely digital means.

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