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Full Programme

You can view and download the full programme hereLink opens in a new window.

Please note: All times are indicated in London time.

Conference Link

The conference will be held on Zoom and all the sessions will be accessible via one link. Please, register hereLink opens in a new window to receive the Zoom link.

March 31st 2023, 15:00-16:00


Yuko Butler

Professor at Educational Linguistics Division and Director of TESOL, Penn GSE.


Dr. Yuko Butler is the Director of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and Professor in the Educational Linguistics Division at Penn GSE. She serves as a professional consultant on language assessments of young learners at Educational Testing Service (ETS), the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), and the Eiken Foundation (Japan). She was awarded the National Academy of Education’s Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2004, studying East Asian perspectives on TESOL.

Originally from Tokyo, Dr. Butler earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Stanford University. She worked at their Center for Educational Research as a postdoctoral fellow, and jointly received the 1999 Cognitive Studies in Educational Practice Award for her research on the effects of metacognitive approaches to improve English as a Second Language (ESL) for language minority students. She then taught California’s Crosscultural, Language, and Academic Development certificate program at San Jose State University.

Yuko Butler keynote abstract

The complexities of language learning in the wild: Understanding the role of children’s game-playing in learning English

The impact of digital games on language learning has gained substantial attention among educators, including educators of young learners (defined as children between 8-14 years of age). Many educators see an emerging opportunity for children to engage in “learning in action.” In our research project on “Language learning ‘in the wild’: Implications of children’s playing of online games in English for their language learning,” our research team initially was interested in understanding how children learn English through game-playing and how children perceive such learning. What our research revealed, however, was a tremendous amount of complexity when it comes to children’s game-playing and language learning. In this talk, I adapt Bronfenbrenner’s (1992) ecological systems theory and examine the significant complexities and challenges that were observed via this project. I argue for taking a nuanced approach to conceptualizing the role of games in children’s English education. The complexities that I dive into include: (a) how to account for various multilayered and interdependent contextual factors in understanding children’s behaviors and perceptions of game-playing; (b) how to reconceptualize game functions to go beyond their intended objectives; (c) how to define ‘outcomes’; (d) how to interpret children’s perceptions; and (e) how to contextualize children’s game-playing in rapidly and dynamically changing environments. The talk concludes with suggestions for future research.

Keynote talk slides.

March 31st 2023, 09:15-10:45


Dave Gatrell

SFHEA, MA Digital Technologies, Communication and Education, PhD candidate, E-Research and Technology Enhanced Learning


Dave Gatrell is a Lecturer in Academic Development at the University of Bristol, specialising in curriculum enhancement and assessment. He is also studying towards a PhD in video-based feedback. Before returning to his native England last year, he lived in Prague, Barcelona, and Hong Kong, where he taught English to Young Learners, trained primary and secondary teachers, designed courses on digital game-based learning, and led funded research projects in technology-enhanced learning. He is particularly interested in the use of authentic video games in learning and teaching.


The next level: Digital game-based learning, literacy and language development

Talk to any of your learners and, chances are, video games are an important part of their lives outside the classroom. Understanding the games learners are into and integrating them into your teaching will not only help you find out what motivates your learners – it can also help add more imagination, curiosity and fun to your classes. What’s more, digital game-based learning can develop the language and literacy skills learners need in the real world.


Like good English language teaching, good video games promote communication, collaboration, creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving, and provide meaningful opportunities to use language in an authentic context. However, much of the educational value of games also depends on how you integrate them and the tasks you design around them.


In this hands-on workshop, you’ll explore language- and skills-focused activities designed around a selection of free online and app-based adventure and simulation games. You’ll also think about how to integrate a wide variety of other video game genres into your teaching.

Workshop slidesLink opens in a new window.

April 1st 2023, 13:00-14:00


Pia Sundqvist

Full Professor of English Language Education, University of Oslo.


Pia Sundqvist (PhD) is Associate Professor of English Language Education at the University of Oslo, Norway. Her research interests are in the field of applied linguistics and include informal language learning, in particular the relation between Extramural English and gaming, English language teaching, and the assessment of L2 oral proficiency. She is the Primary Investigator of STAGE (STarting AGe and Extramural English: Learning English in and outside of school in Norway and Flanders). Sundqvist is the author of Extramural English in Teaching and Learning: From Theory and Research to Practice (with Sylvén, 2016) and of Motivational Practice: Insights from the Classroom (with Henry and Thorsen, 2019). Her most recent edited book is The Routledge Handbook of Language Learning and Teaching Beyond the Classroom (with Reinders and Lai, 2022). Sundqvist’s work has appeared in outlets such as Applied Linguistics, Journal of Pragmatics, Language Learning & Technology, Language Testing, ReCALL, and System. Sundqvist, who is from Sweden, is the current president of the Swedish Association of Applied Linguistics (ASLA) and Editor-in-Chief of its journal.

Pia Sundqvist keynote abstract

Walk the line: Teaching L2 English and young learners’ gaming inside and outside the classroom

In this talk, I will consider the relation between out-of-school online gaming and second/foreign language (L2) English learning with a focus on young learners, and what role games may have for teaching and learning in the L2 English classroom. The framework of Extramural English (EE) – ‘English outside the walls of the classroom’ (Sundqvist, 2009; Sundqvist & Sylvén, 2016) – will form the theoretical basis for my talk. Further, I will point to research by myself and others that has found positive relations between online gameplay of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) games on the one hand, and various aspects of L2 English proficiency on the other. This kind of player-learner-oriented research examines how different variables (such as age, gender, and L2 proficiency) effect “individual and sociocollaborative learning in and through game-mediated interactions” (Reinhardt, 2017, p. 211). Thanks to the great learning potential in games, they have made it into the English curriculum in some countries, and although pedagogical implications based on findings from research typically recommend acknowledgement of students’ extramural gaming and drawing on it in the classroom, this is easier said than done. I will discuss how teachers may consider adopting an Extramural English sensitive approach (Schwarz, 2020) to English language teaching, and how they can walk the line between using and simultaneously respecting students’ personal sphere in classroom learning activities. With this talk, I hope to spur a discussion on using COTS games inside the young learner L2 English classroom.

Keynote talk slidesLink opens in a new window.

1st April 2023, 14:30-16:00


Russell Stannard

Educational Technologist and founder of www.teachertrainingvideos.comLink opens in a new window.


Russell Stannard is a multi award-winning Educational Technologist and founder of www.teachertrainingvideos.comLink opens in a new window. He has more than 70,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel. He received awards from the British Council ELTONS, the Times Higher and the University of Westminster for his work in the use of ICT in education. He is especially known for his work in using technology to enhance feedback, teaching online and blended/flipped learning. He currently works as a consultant on educational technology at Kings College University London and Kwazulu-Natal University in South Africa. He is also an associate trainer at NILE.Link opens in a new window where he teaches on the MA programme and runs courses in blended/flipped learning.


Game based learning that is quick and easy to set up

Game based learning can take many forms. In this talk Russell will focus on tools and techniques that can be used by all teachers to quickly set up and add game based learning to their teaching and learning. From simple game based quizzes and activities to more complex immersive type learning activities, Russell will highlight a range of tools but also focus on how these tools are being used by teachers across the world. A highly practical talk with ideas and techniques that teachers can put into practice immediately.

LinksLink opens in a new window from Russell Stannard's talk.