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Online course

Teaching Your Subject in English

Build your confidence to use English effectively to teach subjects such as Maths, Science or History with this online course.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Teaching Your Subject in English

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Learn with experts and teachers worldwide

Experts at Cambridge English and Cambridge International Examinations will provide you with a range of functional language and practical tips for using it.

You’ll join a community of teachers from across the world – sharing your expertise, finding out what works for other teachers, and looking for new ideas from a range of different contexts. There will also be opportunities for you to explore digital tools for teaching and learning.

Both Cambridge English and Cambridge International Examinations are part of Cambridge Assessment, a not-for-profit department of the University of Cambridge.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 14 secondsI teach History in English, in Hungary, in a bilingual secondary school. My subject is Physics. I teach History and Geography in English. I teach Science in English for Grade 5 students, and also I teach Social Studies for Grade 6 students. I teach ICT in English, and I also teach P.E. but it's not in English, now. Maybe later. Are you teaching Maths, History, Science, or another subject in English? Do you want to build your confidence and use language effectively in your classes?

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 secondsWe invite you to join our free course: 'Teaching Your Subject in English'. When working on projects you need to communicate a lot, you need to establish roles, you need to look for information, and English is everywhere. I have to do a lot of lateral thinking because I not only have to think of the questions that I would like to ask but also what the learners are likely to say, so that I can think of further questions. One basic rule, I think, is use as simple a language as possible. Keep it short and simple, so that by, the simpler your instructions, the simpler your definitions are, the more likely you'll succeed.

Skip to 1 minute and 29 secondsI also like to use prompts: something that will motivate and inspire learners to say something about the topic.

Skip to 1 minute and 38 seconds During the course you'll explore language that you can use to help your learners engage with your subject in English: language for helping learners get ready to learn, language for understanding core concepts, language for developing their thinking skills, and more. Since I teach Geography and History, I think it’s quite important to get students to make connections with whatever they know about the subject in their lives, because it’s very much about life. For example when I'm trying to describe cyclical events in Geography or in Science then I would take a simple example like the water cycle or the seasons, just to show how in nature these cyclical events go on in many different places in many different ways.

Skip to 2 minutes and 28 seconds Experts and teachers from around the world will share their insights with you. You'll have plenty of opportunities to practice your English and to think about how you can use language to support learning. Our students are students who, usually, after graduating from school, they usually go to universities abroad. For example, one student graduated this year, here in Cambridge, so I’m very proud of him. As to monitoring your students’ progress, I think you should never underestimate the power of justified praise. I'm Helen from Cambridge English Language Assessment. I produce professional development materials for teachers across the globe. We hope to welcome you on the course soon.

What topics will you cover?

Language for getting learners ready to learn:

  • Sharing learning objectives
  • Reviewing previous learning
  • Eliciting

Language for conveying ideas and information:

  • Giving definitions
  • Describing and explaining
  • Asking for explanations

Language for developing thinking skills:

  • Questioning to develop predicting and hypothesising skills
  • Questioning to develop reasoning skills
  • Questioning to develop creativity

Language for setting up and managing activities:

  • Giving instructions
  • Helping learners get started
  • Organising and managing pair and group work

Language for supporting and checking learning:

  • Monitoring
  • Getting learners to evaluate and reflect on learning
  • Summarising and emphasising

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

  • Identify parts of a lesson where you can improve the English that you use to teach your subject
  • Identify instructional language that you can try out in your lessons
  • Put a range of instructional language into practice in your teaching context
  • Experiment with suggestions from the course, to address some of the potential difficulties in using English in your context
  • Reflect on how your use of English in the classroom can help your learners succeed

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for current secondary school subject teachers who deliver lessons in English. It will be especially relevant for teachers involved in Bilingual Education and Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), and also relevant for teachers who expect to teach a subject in English in the future. Examples of language in the course come from a wide range of subjects, for example Maths, Science, History, Geography and Economics.

Who will you learn with?

Helen Allen

I develop digital professional development content for teachers at Cambridge English Language Assessment. My professional interest lies in helping learners access and successfully engage in learning.

Kay Bentley

I'm a teacher trainer and consultant for CLIL and Bilingual Education. I'm Chair of TKT: CLIL for Cambridge English Language Assessment and author of CLIL materials for Cambridge University Press.

Paul Ellis

Head of Teaching & Learning at Cambridge International Examinations. Formerly teacher of English and Modern Languages in France and the UK. Trainer of teachers and school consultant in 40 countries.

Claudia Rey

I am a teacher and teacher trainer based in Argentina. I am passionate about learning and teaching and particularly interested in critical thinking and collaborative skills across the curriculum.

Who developed the course?

Cambridge English Language Assessment is part of the University of Cambridge. We provide the most valuable range of qualifications for learners and teachers of English in the world.

Cambridge International Examinations prepares school students for life, helping them develop an informed curiosity and a lasting passion for learning.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Get extra benefits, upgrade this course. For $69 you’ll get:

Unlimited access

Upgrading will mean you get unlimited access to the course.

  • Take the course at your own pace
  • Refer to the material at any point in future

If you’re taking a course for free you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join. If you upgrade the course you have access for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn.

A Certificate of Achievement

Upgrading means you’ll receive a Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course.

  • Prove your success when applying for jobs or courses
  • Celebrate your hard work
  • Display on your Linkedin or CV

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to mark 90% of the steps on the course as complete.

Course highlights Get a taste of this course before you join:

  • Eliciting
    Eliciting
    video

    Cambridge English | Teaching Your Subject in English | Video | Teachers discussing elicitation in subject-specific lessons

  • Describing, explaining and giving examples
    Describing, explaining and giving examples
    video

    Cambridge English | Teaching Your Subject in English | Video | Teachers talking about describing, explaining and giving examples in content lessons

  • Questions to develop creativity
    Questions to develop creativity
    video

    Cambridge English | Teaching Your Subject in English | Video | Teachers discuss language to develop learners' creativity