The Elt Professional Development Quiz

If you are looking to improve your skills in teaching, either by taking a short course, or maybe by enrolling on a distance programme, then first of all try our short quiz below to see where you are on our English Language Teaching professional development scale.

This quiz is based on the Cambridge English Teaching Framework and you can access the full version of the quiz here
In the framework, there are four stages of teacher development, from Foundation to Expert, and five categories of teaching knowledge and skills. Each category describes the key competencies for effective teaching at each stage. The aim of the framework is twofold. It is there to both help teachers to identify where they are in their professional career, and to help teachers and their employers to think about where to go next and identify development activities to get there.

There are five Categories, representing areas of skill and ability.
You are required to answer each of the 14 questions

1 - Look at the list of these 10 terms. How many of them do you understand?

Communicative language teaching, behaviorism, scaffolding, guided discovery, target language, TPR, mingle, skimming, eliciting, comprehensible input.

I think I know one or two.
I have a good understanding of 4-7 terms.
I understand more than 7 of them.
I have detailed understanding of each one of them.

2 - Which statement describes you best? I really need feedback on my lessons to know what worked and what didn’t. When someone explains to me what I did wrong, I find it very useful and learn from it.
Even before I get feedback from the observer, I already have a good idea of what went well and badly in my lesson. Still, feedback is useful – I get a lot of new ideas.
I tend to reflect on my teaching quite often, evaluating it and trying to learn from my experience. I’m happy for my colleagues to see my lessons – I enjoy the discussions afterwards.
I think very thoroughly about each lesson I give, trying to identify precisely the areas I need to work on in my next lessons. I enjoy experimenting and trying new things, and I often watch videos and webinars and read articles on professional development.

3 - Look at the list of these 10 terms. How many of them do you understand?

A transitive verb; a prefix; an idiom; colligation; minimal pairs; juncture; Future Perfect; a class noun; a gerund; 3rd conditional

I think I know about half or less.
I think I know most of them, but I’m not sure I could explain them.
I understand most of them and could probably explain them to students with some preparation.
I have detailed understanding of each one of them.

4 - Which statement describes you best? I usually teach the material more or less like it is in the book.
Sometimes I teach straight from the book, and sometimes I change the way the material is presented in the book to suit my learners.
I often plan my lessons independently – I know my learners well, I know what they enjoy and what is good for them.
I almost never teach straight from the book. I plan my lessons based on my knowledge of my learners and on what I have read about Second Language Acquisition

5 - Which statement describes you best? I use the teacher’s book a lot in my lesson planning and tend to follow what it says most of the time. If someone gave me some material and asked to plan a lesson based on it in 5 minutes, I would find this very challenging.
I understand how to stage reading, listening, grammar and writing lessons. I can plan my own lessons, and they all generally follow the same pattern. I can be creative with warmers and lead-ins, though and I sometimes use authentic materials.
I understand how to use such approaches as Task-Based Learning, Guided Discovery, Test-Teach-Test and others, and I vary the approaches I use in my teaching. I use a lot of authentic materials and I love designing my own lessons and tasks.
I have read a lot on methodology, and I often go to workshops and webinars. There are plenty of approaches I can use and I also have a lot of tried-and-tested activities I have designed/collected during the years. I can use all of these flexibly based on my learners’ interests and needs.

6 - Which statement describes you best? I am not quite sure what to do to develop as a teacher. I find it hard to assess my own strengths and weaknesses as a teacher, and I am not sure what resources are available online and in my area.
I think I have quite an accurate idea of what I need to work on – but I always appreciate ideas for how to do this and which resources are available.
I know my own strengths and weaknesses well, and if I watch another teacher’s lesson I can give them some useful feedback.
I am very well aware of my strengths and weaknesses and have a clear plan for self-development in terms of my teaching skills and career goals. I regularly observe other teachers and support them.

7 - Which statement describes you best? I don’t find teaching too difficult. I see it as quite a simple process, in which I teach the students the material and they study it. My teaching is not very different from how I was taught myself.
I sometimes find it hard to manage the class. There are so many things to do – monitoring, writing on the board, eliciting, concept-checking, drilling, focusing on the language, keeping the right pace… If I focus on something, something else slips. It can also be difficult to focus on what I need to do and to react to the learners at the same time.
I am confident that my students enjoy my classes – there is always a variety of activities, everyone is involved even when the class is mixed-ability, and the results are good. I use different resources, including multimedia and online ones. At the moment, I feel that my teaching is very good in practice – but I would like to know more about the theory and the research behind what we do in the classroom.
I have been a teacher for a few years and feel very confident in the classroom. I am very flexible and have a variety of techniques I can use. I understand teaching approaches quite well. My knowledge of theory, my reading and research contribute to what I do in the classroom.

8 - Which statement describes you best? I find it very difficult to answer students’ questions. Reference books help, but I’m still not really confident.
If I have access to dictionaries and grammar reference books, I can answer most of my students’ questions.
I can answer most of my students’ grammar and vocabulary questions without having to look anything up.
I can give students detailed answers to most of their grammar and vocabulary questions without needing reference material.

9 - Which statement describes you best? I can recognise basic errors my students make and I can myself formulate simple sentences and interact with other English speakers on simple points of information. I believe I am at level A2 or above on the CECR.
I can recognise most of my students’ errors and I can react to them appropriately in English, particularly in exchanges which I’ve planned. I can hold conversations on routine subjects with my colleagues and I believe my level is at least B1 on the CECR.
I can correct my students’ mistakes in spontaneous exchanges with them. I can teach classes up to B2 level and I can interact with my colleagues in all professional situations. My own English is at B2 Level at least.
I can use a wide range of language in the classroom which is consistently accurate. I can correct my students accurately without hesitation. I can converse freely in just about all situations. My own English is at least at C1 level.

10 - Which statement describes you best? I can use a coursebook in my classes but I don’t know really how to adapt its content. I mainly write on the whiteboard and use a CD player and I sometimes show a video but I’m not confident in exploiting it fully for my lesson.
I can exploit and adapt my coursebook in a variety of ways and I do sometimes integrate web-based materials in my lessons with some improvisation. I’m quite flexible in my use of resources and I don’t just limit myself to the whiteboard.
I’m very comfortable in the selection, adaptation and supplementing of coursebook material. I regularly use web-based materials and I have a good understanding of how to integrate them into my classes according to my learners’ needs.
I have a very developed understanding of how to select, adapt and supplement materials. I’m very confident in using the web in my teaching and I know exactly why and how to use it to help my learners and I always adapt my materials to motivate and engage them as much as possible.

11 - Which statement describes you best? I have a couple of ways of teaching grammar which I stick to and I know one or two ways of helping my students improve their pronunciation. I help my students in their writing by teaching them how to link sentences with linkers such as ‘and’ , ‘but’ and ‘however’.
I can teach grammar in a variety of ways in my lessons and I sometimes use phonemic symbols when helping my learners with their pronunciation problems. I understand the principles underlying discourse and I try to help my learners structure their speaking and writing more effectively.
In my lessons I know how to help my learners acquire more vocabulary on their own and I can adapt my lesson frameworks when teaching grammar to best suit my students’ needs. I can vary my techniques when dealing with the pronunciation problems my students have to include both isolated and integrated phonology activities. I feel very comfortable in using the phonetic chart and I have a variety of techniques at my disposal for helping them with discourse.
I have a very wide repertoire of techniques for teaching both grammar and vocabulary. I am very strong at teaching phonology and I deal with stress, connected speech and intonation issues using a wide variety of techniques. I also have a wide variety of techniques for teaching many different discourse features in both writing and speaking.

12 - Which statement describes you best? I help my students with listening by playing the audio on the CD player and then getting them to answer the comprehension questions prepared beforehand or included in the coursebook. Similarly for reading, I tend to give them a set amount of time to read a text and then have my students either write down their answers to pre-set questions or I just ask infieldsetiduals to answer the questions in whole class feedback.
I like to prepare my students before playing an audio track, either by talking about the topic or by getting them to anticipate what they are going to hear. Similarly, when dealing with reading lessons I try to think of activities they could do after we’ve studied the text together to further their engagement with the particular topic.
When I prepare a listening or a reading lesson I try and integrate another skill, for example I might have the students do some talking or writing as well. I pay a lot of attention to how I stage the lesson and I have a variety of techniques at my disposal to make sure I prepare them fully before listening and help them whilst listening to ensure they have understood aspects of connected speech that arise in the recording.
I have a very developed understanding of the techniques and the principles for teaching receptive skills lessons. In planning these lessons I integrate other skills and I intervene during the lessons appropriately in order to develop their sub-skills. I can fine-tune my techniques according to the level and the needs of my students.

13 - Which statement describes you best? I teach speaking by trying to get my learners to talk about a particular subject I think will interest them. I often ask them questions to try and animate the discussion. I give them practice in writing, for example, by giving them articles in English on interesting topics and asking them to write something on the same subject from their point of view.
When I teach speaking and writing I pay attention to preparatory stages to help my students in thinking about what they are going to produce in terms of language. I try to help them during their speaking and writing by allowing for wait time, self and peer correction.
I like to integrate other skills into my speaking and writing lessons. I can stage my productive skills lessons easily and in the classroom I have a variety of techniques at my disposal for developing my learners’ skills. I am aware of scaffolding techniques and I try to integrate them as much as possible.
I am very experienced at teaching speaking and writing and I understand the principles behind the different staging options in productive skills lessons. I pay a lot of attention to developing my learners productive skills by varying my techniques according to their needs and I frequently integrate receptive skills as well into these lessons. I have developed a sophisticated understanding and ability in this area.

14 - Which statement describes you best? I can prepare my learners for the TOEIC test and in my classes I pay attention to telling them if they’ve done well at a particular activity. I also correct any written work I set them.
I have some experience and knowledge of a range of exams, such as the Cambridge First Certificate and the TOEFL exam. I often design comprehension multiple-choice or gap-fill tests for my students and I’m able to conduct tests included in my course materials. In my lessons I give clear feedback to my students after an activity and after any test they sit.
I understand the principles of testing; concepts such as validity and reliability for example. I’m also aware of the wider role of testing in education, the effect of washback for example. I design my own written and oral tests for my students in order to assess their progress and I use the results to inform my design of subsequent lessons. I see testing as an integral part of their learning when designed for their learning.
I know the ins and outs of all the major English tests. I have a detailed understanding of the principles behind testing and I can also judge levels easily using the kind of criteria found in the IELTS test. I design my own written and oral tests consistently and thoroughly. In class I give detailed and infieldsetidualized feedback to my students on their strengths and weaknesses using both formal and informal assessment techniques and I use the knowledge gained to set priorities for infieldsetiduals and the class.