2016 IATEFL BESIG 1st Online Symposium

You can join us online on Saturday, 18 June 2016, for an exciting and varied programme of pecha kucha, webinars, and a Question Time panel discussion on the topic of business English in the era of global English.

Symposium programme

Please click on the speaker's names to access the pecha kucha, webinar, and panel discussion recordings.

 Time (BST = UK time)
Speaker(s) Title
BST 12:30 - 12:40
 Julia Waldner

Pecha Kutcha

1 - 3

BST 12:40 - 13:20
Alan Simpson

Business English in Asia

Rachel Appleby
The Confidence to Stand Up and Talk!
Roy Bicknell
A Trip to Planet Business English

Pecha Kutcha

4 - 6

BST 13:20 - 14:00

Geoff Tranter
English for What Business Purposes?
Kirsten Waechter Fourscore Ducats - The Impact of Shakespeare for Business English
 Elena Matveeva How to present in the era of Global English
Networking & Pecha Kucha Overflow
 BST 14:00 - 14:30
Break BST 14:30 - 14:45  - -
Webinar 1
BST 14:45 - 15:30
Ben Dobbs Analytical Tools, Creative Problem Solving and Business English
Webinar 2
BST 15:30 - 16:15
Rob Howard You have no business teaching Business English, or do you?
Break BST 16:15 - 16:30  - -
Webinar 3
BST 16:30 - 17:15
Lalitha Murthy Do we really mean what we say? Communication Challenges while Working with Indians
Question Time
panel discussion
BST 17:15 - 18:15
Business English in the Era of Global English
Closing  BST 18:15 - 18:30  Dana Poklepovic -


Click here to join the online symposium

This symposium is free to all participants, however, current BESIG members will be entitled to a digital CPD certificate of participation. In order to facilitate the provision of certificates, we would cordially ask you to register in advance on the Adobe platform. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible, and feel sure that you will benefit from the day.

Click here to register

Speakers and talks

Business English in Asia

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 12:40 - 13:20 BST (local time here)

Asian Business English is a large growth market. As economies develop so do Business English as a lingua franca needs. This presentation will highlight some different Asian Business English interaction styles, based on cultural factors, such as directness and turn taking practices. There is a strong need for tailored training approaches, so a few example activities will be revealed.    

Alan Simpson 

Alan Simpson coordinates the English program at Asahi Kasei in Nobeoka, Japan. He goes to chemical, pharmaceutical, electronic, fiber, and medical factories, and teaches a range of students from recent graduates to senior managers, using various materials, to suit their needs and motivations. Recently, he finished his MSc in TESOL. His main focus was on the authentic business English as a lingua franca interaction between Chinese coworkers and his Japanese students.

The Confidence to Stand Up and Talk

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 12:40 - 13:20 BST (local time here)

Presentations are common in business contexts, and yet, regardless of age and experience, even the most senior in the company can find this challenge nerve-wracking. Course materials provide long lists of “useful phrases”, how to use visuals effectively, and so on, but still many of our clients lack the confidence to do this well. What clients specifically need is how to get started, engage their audience, keep them involved, and, not least, how to end effectively. This pecha kucha will take the fast-lane approach to hooks and tools to help clients not just survive but succeed!

Rachel Appleby

Rachel Appleby has taught English for International House and the British Council in the UK, Spain, Portugal, Slovakia, and Hungary, where she now lives. Since 1993 she has focused mostly on teaching English to in-company students, and also, more recently, to University students. Rachel works part-time at ELTE University in Budapest, teaching methodology, language, cultural studies and communication skills on the BA, and on the MA distance and full-time programmes. She is also a teacher trainer, specifically for Business English, but also a CELTA trainer. She also teaches Business English.

A trip to Planet Business English

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 12:40 – 13.20 BST (local time here)

This tongue-in-cheek Pecha Kucha explores what happens when Extraterrestrials encounter a back-packing Business English teacher and decide to visit Planet Business English. Adopting their unique ET perspective, they explore planet life and investigate key developments that seem to be affecting the inhabitants of Planet BE. If you want to have an other-wordly view of Global English and similar developments in the 21st classroom, please attend this session and find out what Extraterrestrials really think!

Roy Bicknell

Roy Bicknell is based in Amsterdam where he teaches Business English, ESP and Intercultural Communication. He leads the Besig Editorial Team and is member of the IATEFL Publications Committee. Like most educators, Roy is very approachable, so just go and talk to him!

English for What Business Purposes

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 13:20 – 14.00 BST (local time here)

Nowadays teachers and learners are confronted with a number of acronyms: ESP, EAP, ETP, EBP, etc. We even find ESAP (English for Specific Academic Purposes). What I have not yet found is ESBP = English for Specific Business Purposes: not in course materials, not in language school course programmes, not in the testing systems offered by international examination boards. This short Pecha Kucha presentation will look at the background to this situation, the practical consequences for teaching and the need and potential for more ESBP in view of the trends towards globalisation.

Geoff Tranter

Geoff has been involved in a wide range of Business English and ESP teaching and testing in further, higher and adult education. He presently teaches at Dortmund Technical University.

Fourscore Ducats - The Impact of Shakespeare for Business English

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 13:20 – 14.00 BST (local time here)

It may be 400 years since Shakespeare died, but his influence on English is still highly relevant. can the same be said for global business English? How relevant are his wordings, phrases, topics and life for the future business English classroom? This Pecha Kucha will present some examples of how Shakespeare's English can be used for several reas of business English, from accounting to management, from leadership to real estate.

Kirsten Waechter

Kirsten Waechter did Shakespeare at school and university and has been a fan since. She is a freelance trainer of business communication skills and business English in Bochum, Germany.

How to Present in the Era of Global English

Saturday - Pecha Kucha: 13:20 – 14:00 BST (local time here)

In the business environment it has become extremely important to know how to express ideas in order to get the message across to the audience. In the era of Global English it is difficult to decide what to pay attention to in order to achieve the intended result. In this pecha kucha Elena would like to highlight the skills and knowedge which teachers have to provide their students with when teaching presentation skills in the globalized world.

Elena Matveeva

Elena Matveeva has been teaching English in Russia since 1998. Since then she has taught English courses at University, given private classes to students of different age groups, taught Business English and General English courses at private language schools. Now she is employed at one of the private language schools in her native city. Her main interest lies in teaching General and Business English to adults.

Analytical Tools, Creative Problem Solving and Business English

Saturday - Webinar: 14:45 – 15:30 BST (local time here)

This interactive session will look at how problems are communicated and solved using Business English as a means of international communication and how this affects the relationships and results achieved by participants. We will look at what analytical tools we can provide and use with our course participants and how these can be used for both carrier content (the problem itself) and real content (language skills and systems) by Business English trainers. This will go beyond the typical SWOT analysis and into other areas including coaching, decision-making, delegation and related tools such as "LoNG" PESTEL.

Ben Dobbs

Ben Dobbs is an independent business communications trainer and coach. He delivers training in the areas of language, business functions and intercultural and interpersonal skills, most recently in Saudi Arabia, Russia, the UAE and China.

You have no business teaching Business English, or do you?

Saturday - Webinar: 15:30 – 16:15 BST (local time here)

Today’s Business English clients are much more demanding than in the past. Many are making more and more demands on the profile of their teachers. Must they be native speakers? Must they have a business background? Should they have business experience? Is being a good English teacher enough? The presentation will present ideas based upon years of experience dealing with this dilemma and the answers just might surprise you. It will be covering some uncommon and often overlooked aspects of Business English teaching that are should be reevaluated before ever offering to teach a business client.

Rob Howard

Rob Howard is the owner of Online Language Center, teaching advanced communication solutions globally.  A Business Management and Computer Science major and Secondary Education minor with 40 years of business experience, he is now a teacher, writer, consultant and speaker regarding EFL. He is the founder of EFLtalks.com, building a free, online worldwide PLN+ for teachers, which has been nominated for the British Council’s 2016 ELTons Award for Innovation in teacher resources.

Do we Really Mean What we Say? Communication Challenges while Working with Indians

Saturday - Webinar: 16:30 – 17:15 BST (local time here)

In this era of globalization, working with other cultures poses a number of challenges. This includes challenges which arise due to cultural differences, styles of communication as well as differences in the use of language. Challenges increase further when the communication is not face to face but virtual. This workshop explores these differences from the perspective of working with Indians specially software engineers who interact with different nationalities. It aims to provide solutions by analyzing the language used and the cultural traits they may exhibit.

Lalitha Murthy

Lalitha Murthy, based in Bangalore, India, is a Business English trainer. She has worked with various companies which provide IT solutions in the off shore model. She has presented at two Besig Annual Conferences, and was the Indian host of the first simulcast conducted by BESIG in 2012.

Business English in the Era of Global English

Saturday - Question Time panel discussion: 17:15 – 18:15 BST (local time here)

The Question Time panel discussion is the culmination of the IATEFL BESIG 1st Online Symposium. A panel of four experts will be asked a mix of prepared and spontaneous audience questions on the day's theme: Business English in the era of global English. The three specific areas that participants will be encouraged to submit questions about are: global English and the English we should teach, soft skills and intercultural training, and the role of technology. The discussion will be hosted by Pete Rutherford.

Virginia Lopez Grisolia

Professor Virginia López Grisolía is a teacher of English and simultaneous and consecutive interpreter. She was the APIBA President from 2013 - 2015 and is the president of the Association of Graduate English Teachers of Buenos Aires, which is a member of FAAPI. She was also an Executive Committee member at APIBA from 2005 to 2011. Virginia has taught English Grammar I, II & Linguistics at J.V.Gonzalez, Lenguas Vivas J.R.Fernandez and INSPT-UTN for over 27 years. Additionally, she has taught English and acted as coordinator, teacher trainer and consultant for schools and private institutions for more than 25 years. Virginia is the owner and Director of Studies at Interaction Language Studio, a company devoted to the teaching of Business English since 1988.

Juliette Hartmann

Juliette worked in ELT for over 20 years as a teacher and teacher trainer in private language schools, Helderberg College and the University of Stellenbosch before joining the University of Cape Town's English Language Centre as Director of Studies. Her areas of interest are teacher training, teacher coaching, experiential learning, and time limit anxiety in language learning.

Mike Hogan

Mike has worked in professional English language and international communication training since 2001. Mike is also a trainer and coach in the field of international team and leadership, offering support for those working in or leading international (virtual) teams. He enjoys designing and delivering teacher training courses and is very experienced with elearning. He is a regular keynote speaker at international conferences and webinar presenter for both ELT and international leadership topics. Titles published by Mike include the award-winning ‘Basis for Business’ (Cornelson) and ‘Business English for Beginners’ (Cornelsen), as well as ‘Global Business eWorkbooks’ (Macmillan). Having spent 15 years in Germany, Mike now lives in York where he enjoys spending time with his family, cooking and being outdoors.

Jennie Wright

Jennie Wright is a teacher, presenter, blogger and ELT author based in Germany. With over 15 years of experience in language teaching, her blog http://teflhelperblog.wordpress.com/ features free professional development resources for teachers. She also co-authored Experimental Practice in ELT: Walk on the wild side with Christina Rebuffet-Broadus which is published by www.the-round.com. Her experience in business English goes back over 15 years, where she started teaching Japanese business men in Tokyo. She is now embedded with 100 German software engineers at an international company. When not teaching, she enjoys mentoring new ELT writers to contribute articles to the ELTAS News (Stuttgart ELTA).


Click here to join the online symposium

BESIG Organising Team

Members of the BESIG Online Team (BOT) and BESIG Committee volunteers: Julia Waldner, Pete Rutherford, Mercedes Viola, Sue Annan, Dana Poklepovic, Shanthi Streat, and Bethany Cagnol.

Please email us if you have any questions : pete.rutherford@besig.org or mercedes.viola@besig.org.

BESIG 1st Online Symposium logo