Rowena Mathew
Building better reading comprehension.

I plan to deliver a workshop on helping EAP students comprehend written texts more deeply. For this I will use some key concepts and ideas from Hedgcock and Ferris (2009) 'Teaching Readers of English' and other activities I've developed that I think help students understand English language texts more fully. I will model these ideas and activities by using an opinion genre text with workshop participants. I aim first to introduce a pre-reading/ previewing activity to help students build a schema for a genre that may be new to them as readers of English. Next, I will demonstrate two reading activities that students are required to complete while they are reading the complete text for the first time. Finally, I will model two post reading activities that focus on language features and summary skills. I will justify the reasons for following a pre-, during and post-reading activity structure for a reading skills lesson, as well as model these with workshop participants.

I have been teaching ESL for 12 years and EAP at RMIT English Worldwide (REW) for almost 10 years. I completed an M.A. in Applied Linguistics in 2013 and I have previously held a role as a teaching team leader at REW. I have a particular interest in teaching academic reading and writing, and have been conducting both secondary and primary research into what makes a good second language reader and how to help our students become better readers. I presented a lightning plenary of my research at the ALAA annual conference in 2016.