Fifth Project Meeting in Lodz, Poland

The project partners held a final meeting on the 10th and participated in the final conference on the 11th of October 2013 in Lodz, in Poland. The meeting was hosted by Joanna Nijakowska and Marcin Podogrocki from the University of Lodz, both the meeting and the conference took place in the Holiday Inn Hotel in Lodz (

The main objective of the meeting was to present the current results of the internal and external quality management evaluation, with special attention given to the fact whether the suggestions included in the interim report have been sufficiently addressed. Also the steps towards preparation of the QM final evaluation report were discussed. Another major objective of the meeting was to summarize the exploitation strategies, to discuss the exploitation and dissemination activities undertaken by the partnership (including the national valorization seminars) and steps towards preparation of the final exploitation and dissemination reports. All partners presented their dissemination monitoring tools and proofs of the activities and initiatives they have undertaken in order to promote the DysTEFL project and its products and to explore and secure the possibilities for exploiting the course materials in and outside the project partner countries.

The commercialization agreement was signed and the production phase of the DysTEFL course materials was summed up ? the DysTEFL Trainer?s Booklet accompanied by the CD and the DysTEFL Trainee?s Booklet have been published and distributed among the project partners. The booklets are also available for download at the project website together with the self-study mode of the course. Finally, project partners discussed the administrative and financial management issues, with special emphasis put on the quality and deadlines for final reporting. No major delays have been recorded in any of the activities, all the workpackages have been realized and completed as planned, cooperation has been smooth and rewarding, and, finally, high quality teacher training materials have been produced.  

The final DysTEFL conference, organized by the Department of Pragmatics and the International Educational Projects Office of the University of Lodz, supported by the DysTEFL partnership, turned out to be a great success. It gathered about 140 participants ? English language teachers, teacher trainers, policy makers and other interested parties. Delegates could listen to two plenary lectures delivered by distinguished scholars in the area of teaching foreign languages and dyslexia, participate in a panel discussion, together with invited experts from the countries outside the partnership and partners, and, finally, take part in two out of ten workshops covering units from of the DysTEFL training course. Reaction and feedback gathered during and after the conference was most positive.

Fourth Project Meeting in Budapest, Hungary

The fourth project meeting was held in Budapest, Hungary on the 11th and 12th of March 2013 and hosted by the Research Centre for Natural Sciences, Hungarian Academy of Sciences. The main objective of the meeting was to discuss how to finalize the DysTEFL course content based on feedback from the piloting phase and to make decisions on how to proceed with the production process. Partners also discussed potential amendments regarding the exploitation and dissemination strategy based on the experience gained during the project in these areas.
The partners from the The Society for Alternative Education summarized the feedback from course participants and trainers who participated in the DysTEFL self-study or face-to-face course, and the partners from Lancaster University shared their experiences from the moodle course. The feedback was overwhelming in both quantity and quality. Since the overall feedback was very positive, the partners came to the conclusion that no major modifications to the course content were necessary. However, minor changes may be necessary in task timing, wording of the tasks, etc. As for the production work package, the partners mainly discussed what changes need to be made to the texts for the printed version of the course material and what materials should be featured on the accompanying CD.
The other central topics of the meeting were exploitation and dissemination, the two work packages that will be more emphasised from now on. Therefore, the final version of the IPR Agreement was discussed and accepted by partners. Also, the participants agreed on the approach towards revising the exploitation and dissemination strategy and the method of recording such activities. The format and programme of events that will take place in the final 6 months of the project such as valorisation seminars and the final conference in Lodz were also discussed in detail.

Third Project Meeting in Lancaster, UK

The project partners held a highly successful meeting on the 13th and 14th of June 2012 in Lancaster, in the United Kingdom. The meeting was hosted by Dr. Judit Kormos and took place on the campus of Lancaster University. The main objective of the meeting was to finalize the structure and methodology of the face-to-face, self-study and online learning versions of the training course for teachers of English as a foreign language to help them fully include dyslexic learners in their language classes. The partners had the opportunity to exchange ideas and provide feedback on units that were already drafted.  The external evaluators also contributed to the discussion with very useful suggestions regarding the content of the course. The first unit of the course that can serve as an example and that can illustrate the underlying pedagogical principles and the methodological approach taken in our teacher training courses was agreed to be made available to the public.

In the meeting various other issues relating to the management of the project were also discussed including the monitoring and planning of the dissemination and exploitation activities, intellectual property rights and the lessons learnt from the first internal financial report. Another important outcome of the meeting was that partners agreed about the methods of piloting the teacher training materials and the piloting tasks were distributed in a way that useful feedback can be gathered about all the different versions of the training course.

Second Project Meeting in Brno, Czech Republic

The second project meeting was held on the 20th and 21st of February 2012 in Brno, Czech Republic. The meeting was hosted by the partners from the English department, Faculty of Education of Masaryk University and took place in the Sheringham Hotel.
One of the main issues discussed at the meeting was the needs analysis realized during the first months of the project. The partners from Masaryk University presented the main findings of the needs analysis in two reports, namely the report summarizing research on secondary sources and the report showing the first results and preliminary conclusions of the questionnaire survey carried out among teachers and teacher trainees in project partner countries.

Apart from the needs analysis the partners also focused on the planning of further steps, including the structure of the course, intellectual property agreement, and dissemination activities. Last but not least, the financial and administrative issues were discusssed.

As for the structure of the course, the division of the course into 10 units was agreed on and the partners divided the work on the units. It was decided that each unit will contain the aims, reflection and awareness raising activities, tasks and solutions and the list of resources. There will be three versions of the course materials: face-to-face, self-study and online.

Kick-off meeting

The kick-off meeting of the DysTEFL project was held on the 23rd and 24th of November 2011, in Lodz, in Poland. The project was hosted by the project coordinator ? Lodz University. The main aims of the meeting were to establish rapport among partners, to discuss the idea, objectives and planned results of the project as well as the management issues and communication, and, finally, to review and talk over the workplan.

The meeting started with short introductions of the partner institutions to the partnership, which was followed by the presentation of individual workpackages. Individual workpackages covered such issues as management of the project (including all administrative and financial details), needs analysis phase, structure and content of the course, testing phase, producing materials, planning and monitoring exploitation and dissemination activities as well as quality management and evaluation. The leaders of all nine workpackages suggested their visions of how the activities and tasks planned in their workpackages can be conducted. They also provided drafts and templates of the documents, instruments and guides helpful in systematizing and standardizing work. Partners had the opportunity to express their opinions and provide feedback on each workpackage. Important outcome of the meeting was that partners agreed on the course of action to be taken and deadlines for completing particular activities, and approved of the project workplan. Special attention was given to a thorough discussion of the details of the needs analysis phase of the projects, including the roles and activities that all the partners were supposed to fulfil in the following months. Partners agreed to compile information and prepare reports on the analysis of data concerning current approach in teacher education in partner countries (facts, tendencies, regularities, examples of good practice) with reference to teaching modern foreign languages to learners with dyslexia. Partners also agreed that the second major component of the needs analysis phase would be a questionnaire for teachers of English as a foreign language in all partner countries and that the minimum number of respondents per country would be 30.

Project-Number: 518466-LLP-1-2011-PL-COMENIUS-CMP         © 2012 DysTEFL – Project Coordinator: University of Lodz
Grant agreement number: 2011-3631/001-001

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.