International Conference

November 13 - 15, 2019


Lehmkuhlenbusch 4
27753 Delmenhorst



  • Prof. Dr. Sabine Doff
    University of Bremen
  • Dr. Tim Giesler
    University of Bremen
  • Dr. Richard Smith
    University of Warwick


How did language teachers actually teach in the past - in practice, in different contexts? What were the decisions and beliefs underlying their work and what were the contexts that influenced them? What ideas did learners acquire in language classrooms and how did these connect with other language learning experiences? In what ways have contexts and practices influenced formal theories of language learning and teaching, as well as textbook design, assessment procedures, and so on? And to what extent, in what ways and why have different promoted 'methods' been adopted, resisted or adapted in the diverse practices of teachers and learners around the world?

These are just some of the questions we would like to pursue in the context of this conference, which aims at highlighting and valorizing the importance of 'practice' and 'context' in the history of language learning and teaching. Grounded histories, as we might call them - involving historical research into language learning and teaching at a 'grassroots' level, or 'history from below' - are of scholarly interest in themselves but they might also serve a useful role in counterbalancing the dominance of potted histories of method in the overall fields of applied linguistics and language education.