E-Book on the Impact of September 11th on ESL Teaching Profession Passes 10,000 Downloads Mark

July 14, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Education News
The ESL MiniConference Online reported this month that downloads of its first e-book, "Transitions, Turmoil, and Hope: the ESL Profession after 9-11," have surpassed the 10,000 mark.

During the year following the Al-Qaeda attacks in America, intensive English programs at colleges and universities across the country struggled to protect teaching jobs while applications from international students dropped precipitously.

"Something changed on 9-11," said Robert Bruce Scott, editor of the ESL MiniConference Online, "and the English language teaching profession is undergoing tensions and stresses that are radically redefining the landscape for anyone considering this career."

By early 2003, prestigious ESL programs at the University of Berkeley and the University of Minnesota were shut down, and career ESL instructors were being retrained for new occupations. Programs which survived were moving quickly to a new model, less dependent on elite, educated students from abroad.

Repercussions from 9-11 were felt not only at university programs. The rhetoric of the “War on Terror” also rekindled the anti-immigrant sentiments of mainstream America, and “No Child Left Behind” brought a renewed focus on the academic performance of English language learners in public schools.

"One lasting impression from the emotionally charged days and weeks following September 11th," explained Scott, "was the importance of remembering the people who influence our lives." That is where the idea for the “Achievement Profile” interviews, compiled on the ESL MiniConference Online, came from, according to Scott.

As the number of these “Achievement Profiles” grew, it became clear that through these online interviews a comprehensive, multifaceted snapshot of the ESL/EFL profession in transition was emerging.

That snapshot of the ESL teaching profession is captured in the e-book,
"Transitions, Turmoil, and Hope," published by the ESL MiniConference Online, in 2005.

"It is my strong belief that the unguarded comments of these 40 ESL teachers can help us remember what is best and what is most essential about the activity of teaching English to speakers of other languages," said Robert Scott, editor.