Postacademische cursus - English Studies Update: Current Trends in Literature, Culture and Linguistics for the EFL Classroom

In this course six enthusiastic lecturers from the programme of English Language and Culture discuss a wide variety of themes relevant to the field of English Studies, ranging from pedagogical applications of sociolinguistic research to teaching crisis and ethics through literature and from normativity in pronunciation teaching to teaching graphic narratives. In the final session language teaching experts from the Radboud Docentenacademie will help participants translate topics and themes that were addressed in the course to concrete classroom applications and materials.



    De cursus vindt plaats op de campus van de Radboud Universiteit. 


    Bekijk het programma van 2024 met de onderwerpen van de sessies, sprekers en verplichte literatuur hierboven bij 'Programma'. De cursus is inclusief een gezamenlijk diner in universiteitsrestaurant 'de Refter' voorafgaand aan het eerste college. 

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    De cursus gaat van start op donderdag 5 september. Aanmelden kan via onderstaande knop. Je doet de betaling direct bij aanmelding via creditcard, Ideal of PayPal. Je ontvangt een bevestiging voor eventuele declaratie bij je werkgever.


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    05 september 2024, 19:00
    € 250
    Voor studenten geldt een gereduceerd tarief van €80,-
    Op locatie
    05 september 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    19 september 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    03 oktober 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    17 oktober 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    07 november 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    21 november 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    28 november 2024, 19:00 - 20:45
    Aantal bijeenkomsten


    Type onderwijs


    Sanne van Vuuren
    Centre for Language Studies | Departement Moderne talen en culturen
    sanne.vanvuuren [at] (sanne[dot]vanvuuren[at]ru[dot]nl)

    Joyce Wanten
    Radboud Pre-University College of Society
    tel. 06-31132898
    pucofsociety [at] (pucofsociety[at]let[dot]ru[dot]nl)

    Programma 2024*

    • 5 September 2024 | "You say po-tay-to, I say po-tah-to”: Integrating variation into the English Language Classroom |Dr. Katharina Pabst 

      Een gezamenlijk diner in de Refter is inclusief voorafgaand aan dit college.

       English speakers today do not speak like they did during Shakespeare’s lifetime, and those in England sound different from those in the United States, India, and the Netherlands. The field of Variationist Sociolinguistics studies how language varies across space and time. In this interactive lecture, we will discuss the main ideas behind this field of study and how some of its findings can be implemented in the English language classroom to raise students’ language awareness.

    • 19 September 2024 | Teaching Graphic Narratives | Dr. Chris Louttit

      In this session, we will consider ways of using graphic narratives to engage students exploring literature and culture in the secondary classroom. After an introduction to the history of adapting classic literature to the comic book and graphic novel form, we’ll discuss one example in detail: Adam Dalva, Darin Strauss and Emma Vieceli’s Olivia Twist: Honor Among Thieves (2019). This ‘thrilling reboot’ of Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist (1837-39) provides a futuristic and dystopian twist on this famous literary classic, and engages teen readers by updating Dickens’s text to suit contemporary preoccupations. Our discussion of Olivia Twist will focus on approaches to teaching this graphic narrative, both building on students’ existing visual literacy and knowledge of dystopian worlds, and providing them with the tools to understand the distinctive features of the graphic narrative. We will reflect finally on the extent to which works like Olivia Twist might be effective in coaxing reluctant readers into an interest in the literary classics.   

      Required reading: Adam Dalva, Darin Strauss and Emma Vieceli, Olivia Twist: Honor Among Thieves (2019; ebook or print) 

    • 3 October 2024| The Foreign Language Classroom: Attitudes and Aptitudes | Dr. Jarret Geenen

      In this session, foreign language learning will be our primary focus with specific attention placed on dialectology (variation in within any particular language), linguistic attitudes (feelings about our own and others language), and foreign language teaching. We will begin with a brief discussion of current research trends in the teaching and learning of additional languages and some reflection on our own linguistic ecology. We will use this discussion to feed into brainstorming best practices in both the language learning classroom and the classroom where a foreign language is used as the language of instruction. These are two very different pedagogical situations but our own linguistic attitudes and ideologies can have a significant impact on successful teaching in both scenarios.

    • 17 October 2024 | Apocalypse Always: Teaching Crisis through Literature | Dr. Chris Cusack

      In Teaching Climate Change to Adolescents, Richard Beach, Jeff Share, and Allen Webb argue that language teaching can help students face a world in crisis (Beach et al. 2017, 18). Literature in particular, Sofia Ahlberg claims, can be a key resource for “teaching students how to engage with crisis rather than regard it as a diagnosis with only a fatal outcome” (Ahlberg 2021, 1).

      But how can we use literature in the EFL classroom to talk about the major crises that occupy today’s adolescents, such as the climate emergency? In this session, we will look at one of the oldest ways we have of conceptualising crisis, namely the notion of apocalypse – and what comes after. How do notions of the end feature in contemporary literature, and how should we interpret them? And in what ways can we use (post)apocalyptic literature to engage students, prompt discussion, and stimulate creativity? Focusing on poems by Suzannah Evans and fiction by Sarah Hall, among other texts, during this seminar we will examine the productive nature of disaster.

      Required reading (available in PDF):
      Sarah Hall, “Then Later, His Ghost,” New Statesman (20 December 2013-9 January 2014): 84-89.
      Suzannah Evans, from Near Future (Rugby: Nine Arches Press, 2018).

      • “The Doomer’s Daughter” (12).
      • “The End of the End of the World” (21).
      • “De-Extinction” (56-57).

      Suzannah Evans, from Space Baby (Rugby: Nine Arches Press, 2022).

      • “Doomsday Preppers” (14).
      • “Permafrost” (30).
    • 7 November 2024 | Research-based Pedagogy in Pronunciation Teaching: a Cinderella Story | Dr. Sanne van Vuuren

      Pronunciation, often referred to as the ‘Cinderella’ of foreign language teaching, is strongly associated with linguistic anxiety, both inside and outside the classroom. While pronunciation instruction may come with fears of negative evaluation, it also has the potential to increase learners’ confidence and willingness to communicate. This workshop explores how pronunciation teaching might reduce or fuel speaking anxiety and how we can reconcile the normativity inherent in pronunciation teaching with the goal of linguistic inclusion. We delve into language teaching history and trace the evolution of normative thinking in pronunciation teaching over the past 150 years. Over that period, the suitability of different models for pronunciation instruction has been subject to near constant debate and the ultimate goal instructors are expected to be aiming for has shifted with the rise of English as a lingua franca and the outcomes of sociolinguistic and applied linguistics research. We will look at the mark this has left on the EFL classroom and what it means for our language teaching practice. 

    • 21 November 2024 | Teaching Ethics Through Literature: Kazuo Ishiguro's Klara and the Sun | Dr. Usha Wilbers

      Kazuo Ishiguro’s 2021 novel Klara and the Sun implicitly and explicitly addresses controversial ethical questions, such as: what is the value of a human life? What are the opportunities and dangers inherent to Artificial Intelligence? And is there such a thing as a human essence? In this lecture we will use Klara and the Sun as a tool to discuss how we can address these ethical issues in the classroom, viewed from the context of citizenship education and theory on the posthuman. The aim of this session is to create a stimulating discussion about the novel itself and also create space to exchange teaching strategies.

      Required reading: 
      Kazuo Ishiguro, Klara and the Sun (London: Faber & Faber, 2021).
      Kazuo Ishiguro, Klara and the Sun

    • 28 November 2024 | From Disciplinary Content to Teaching Practice | Drs. Calijn de Jong & Drs. Stef Siepel

      In the last session of the course the focus will be on translating the contents of the previous sessions into educational practices. Led by Calijn de Jong and Stef Siepel, teacher trainers of English at the Radboud Docenten Academie, this session will consider the contents of the previous sessions in the context of the current national curriculum development. Throughout the course we will be gathering information from participants to decide which of the themes that have been addressed they would like to focus on during this final session. We will conclude the course by developing these elements into practices to be used in the classroom. 

    *Het is niet mogelijk om voor afzonderlijke colleges in te schrijven. De bijeenkomsten worden niet opgenomen.