Stuart Parker, Australian Catholic University
Exploring the possibilities of Action Learning in ELICOS

Exploring the possibilities of Action Learning in ELICOS Action Learning Sets (ALS) have been embraced in many professional settings including corporate, education, and health. ALS involve small groups identifying, breaking down and exploring solutions to real problems/challenges identified by the participants themselves. The emphasis of ALS is to facilitate ongoing self-reflection in a supportive, open environment. In this session, I will introduce the concept of ALS and guide participants through an Action Learning demonstration. In a guided discussion, we will then look at how ALS can be utilised in ELICOS contexts both in staffrooms (with ongoing teacher development) and classrooms (with students looking to maximise their learning potential). A brief rundown of the process of ALS follows:

Stage 1: The presenter of the previous session will report back on the actions taken as a result of that session.
Stage 2: Each member of the set will report on an issue/challenge specific to her/him. A fixed time will be allowed for this (possibly 1 – 2 minutes).
Stage 3: The group will agree on which group member will be the presenter for this session.
Stage 4: The presenter will describe the issue/challenge in more detail (possibly 2 – 3 minutes).
Stage 5: Group members will then ask a range of questions of the presenter to enable her/him to delve more deeply into the issue/challenge. Questions can be clarifying, open or action. * Group members are not to offer opinions or advice.
Stage 6: The presenter will describe what actions she/he will take as a result of the session.
Stage 7: Group members, the presenter, and finally the enabler will reflect on the session.

I am the Assistant Academic Manager at ACU (Melbourne). I have worked as an English Language teacher for over 21 years. In that time, I have worked in Australia, Japan and Thailand. A recent highlight has been developing and implementing a Communication Skills unit for Burmese tertiary students on the Thai-Burma border. I previously presented at UECA PD Fest Adelaide in 2016. The topic was Teaching Rubrics.