History

uk-map

I was born in Wales near Swansea, but we moved to England when I was young, and I grew up near Basingstoke (South West of London). I took a BA (hons) in Music and then an MA in 20th Century Music at Bristol University. Later I did a PhD in Language Programme Assessment at Manchester University.

After being a Middle School teacher in England, I decided to teach English as a Foreign Language (EFL) and to follow my love for "Baduk". Therefore I came to Korea. After two years in Seoul, I went to Andong National University (ANU), as Visiting Professor of English and from there to Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

In 1997, I was invited to design and set up a "Conversation-English" programme for all students at ANU.

I saw this as a chance to make a language programme based on principles of student-centred learning: Confidence, Motivation and Independence (CMI). The programme is described and evaluated in my Ph.D.Thesis, and the student-centred books are available on the web (free download) ("Tell Me More!", "Now You're Talking!", "The Way Ahead").

After Andong, I set up a conversation programme at Seoul National University of Technology (SNUTLC) (2000), received my Ph.D. from Manchester University, and married a wonderful person, all in the same year. In January 2001 I returned to the HK PolyU , this time as Language Testing Consultant on the Graduating Students' Language Proficiency Assessment programme (GSLPA). I then joined the faculty of the English Education Department at Kyungpook National University (KNU) in September 2001.

In November 2011 I was invited to set up a speaking/writing Freshman English program at KNU, based on holistic, pedagogically sound principles. The results can be seen here.

Thoughts

I believe that positive attitudes are essential to learning, and that the job of the teacher is to help students become confident, motivated and self-sufficient learners. As technology changes the world in unimaginable ways, and at an ever-increasing pace, the role of the teacher must be expanded to include language resource, facilitator of learning, and mentor of future generations of responsible citizens. Please check out the various links on my homepage for more on this topic.

A number of well-known people have come from the south of Wales. As you can see (below), Dylan, Thomas is from Swansea. Richard Burton and Anthony Hopkins are both from Part Talbot, and are also both great actors. You might know Tom Jones as the singer of "Green Grass of Home". Henry V is immortalised in Shakespeare's drama of the same name.