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Volume 1 Number 1, Spring 2004, Pages 1-403   

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An Evaluation Approach Towards Feedback Improvement in the Context of Initial Teacher Training in ELT

    George Mann

This article provides an account of a small-scale evaluation study in the area of initial teacher training in ELT. While evaluation of this sort has a clear accountability function, the article promotes the view that it is the developmental potential of this kind of evaluation that renders it of real value to the teacher trainer or trainee. This applies equally to evaluation studies conducted in European settings such as this one, or to those carried out in any part of the very wide AsiaTEFL constituency. After an opening section which gives an account of the appropriate literature, the study goes on to look at the core elements of the feedback sessions given by TESOL tutors after each teaching practice session on a Trinity Certificate course at the University of the West of England, Bristol, UK. The study shows that these feedback sessions are seen by tutors and trainees as an invaluable means of improving trainee performance. Nevertheless, issues to do with location, participation, leadership, length, timing, structure, atmosphere, perceptions, previous experiences and outcomes mean that these sessions must be carefully managed and must be seen to involve outcomes which are well-focused, relevant and shared by both parties.