At this high-profile virtual event, on 3 June, on the sidelines of the APREMC-II conference (5-7 June), the British Council English Programmes South Asia and East Asia teams, together with education partners from across Asia Pacific, outlined core principles for ensuring remote professional development for teachers is scalable, sustainable, and truly inclusive. Drawing on global British Council research as well as live project case studies from Indonesia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam, the event highlighted lessons learnt from large scale teacher development interventions delivered remotely; answering the key questions of what works best, and why. 

From Vietnam, Dr Bui Thi Ngoc Thuy from HUST (Hanoi University of Science and Technology) and Professor Marina Orsini-Jones from Coventry University introduced their virtual exchange project known as ViVEXELT (Vietnam’s Virtual Exchange for English Language Teaching). This was a UK-VN partnership project, one of three, under British Council Vietnam’s pilot Digital Learning Innovation Fund which was launched in 2021 and implemented until March this year (2022). The Digital Learning Innovation Fund was supported by the National Foreign Languages Project (NFLP) of Viet Nam’s Ministry of Education & Training (MOET). was a community of practice (or virtual exchange) between practising teachers in Vietnam and the UK. Through the VE activities, teachers were able to share teaching practice, workshop challenges and devise lesson plans, many of which were related to the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs).  Devised at the height of Covid-19, the project was planned and implemented as an online platform, building on earlier collaborations between the two institutions. 

In their presentation, Marina and Thuy outlined the genesis of their project, how it was implemented and some of the products, as well as highlighting some of the challenges, successes and lessons learned that could be applied to similar CoP/virtual exchange projects to support teachers in their professional development through online CPD.

If you missed the event, you can still access the recording via British Council Indonesia's YouTube channel. You can also learn more about all the Digital Learning Innovation Fund projects through recordings of webinars and events on British Council Vietnam’s You Tube playlist.