On behalf of the Organizing Committee, we are pleased to invite you to participate inan international conference on the theme “Learner Autonomy in Higher Education”. The Conference will take place on November 29 – 30, 2013, at South East European University in Tetovo, Macedonia.
This conference will focus on one selected learning concept: Learner Autonomy in Language Studies. We invite teachers and graduate students of language subjects in higher education to discuss general and also intercultural challenges and developments related to Learner Autonomy.
The term ‘learner autonomy’ is one which has gained considerable currency in contemporary language teaching. It emphasizes the diversity and individuality of learning practices both inside and outside the classroom and, fundamentally, it is defined as “the ability to take charge of one’s own learning” (Holec, 1981). By enabling students to choose study modes and methods which suit them, teachers hope to foster a motivational energy which comes with a degree of freedom within the learning process. Learning autonomy is closely related with other concepts in language education such as: educational psychology, learning styles, cognition, motivation. It is entwined with current teaching and learning methodologies which emphasize active task-based learning and which allow for student initiative and student choice instead of a solely teacher-directed classroom. It impacts upon assessment methods, feedback and error correction. It is also related to new technologies of learning: CALL (Computer Assisted Language Learning), learning management systems, blogs and the internet. With the post-Bologna emphasis on lifelong learning, increasingly, students of varying ages can choose their mode of study: full-time or part-time, online studies or different degrees of blended learning and have opportunities to take part in mobility programmes. Within these educational frameworks, learner autonomy is more and more seen as a key to language learning success.
We invite papers which reflect on the theory and practice of Language Learner Autonomy and which evaluate this concept’s relevance to contemporary language education at University level. Papers which include an international comparative perspective are particularly welcome. The Conference Programme will include paper presentations, plenary talks and many opportunities for social and professional discussion in an international context. The Conference is organized by the Faculty of Languages, Cultures and Communications at South East European University in Tetovo, Macedonia, in cooperation with the University of Teacher Education in Zug, Switzerland.
Abstracts should be 150-200 words in length and should include 5 keywords and a short biographical statement. Paper presentations will be of 20 minutes duration with 5-10 minutes for discussion.
Conference languages are German and English.
A conference fee of €40 is to be paid on arrival at the conference venue. It includes coffee breaks and one lunch. For SEE University staff, the fee will be €25 or 1,500 MKD.