#IATEFL2015 | Sue Leather | Large-Scale ELT Projects

Sue Leather
Sue Leather; an associate of the Institute of Education, University of London, an ELT consultant and trainer with extensive experience of learning programme development and capacity building projects in transitional and challenging contexts.


ETTE: tracing the impacts of a large-scale ELT project

Main Point:

What happens to the participants of large-scale ELT projects once they are finished? Most projects are either evaluated before they are finished or a short time after the end but the impact can often be fully assessed only long after the programme has been completed. The main interest of the study conducted by Sue Leather on a project funded by the British Council in Central and South Asia Region is to follow project participants after the project to see how successful it has been.


  • The project was called ETTE (English for Teaching; Teaching for English).
  • It was conducted between 2007 and 2011 in the following countries: Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh and Nepal. (However, Iran was forced to withdraw from the project in late 2008.)Screen Shot 2015-04-13 at 12.06.47
  • The project aims were:
    • To improve the classroom performance of teachers of English.
    • To increase teachers’ access to a variety of developmental methods and materials.
  • Teachers used to teach in their mother tongue before the project but after the project observations showed that they had most started to teach in English and students’ marks had improved. Overall, their English improved!
  • From 2011 to 2014, a small-scale qualitative study was conducted in Nepal, Kazakistan and Pakistan to trace the impact of the ETTE project (Tracer Study). It was important to find out what happens when the funders are no longer involved in the context and the stakeholders are given the opportunity to take the programme forward.
  • The study was conducted on a group of 15 teachers and trainers over a period of three years with the following focus:
    • Year 1: immediate impacts
    • Year 2: Sustainability
    • Year 3: Reflecting back to compare with project objectives
  • Findings:
    • More student-centred lessons, more interaction, more fun (teachers)
    • Enhanced confidence to use English in class (teachers)
    • Better classroom management (teachers)
    • Better exam performance (students)
    • Enhanced speaking and critical thinking (students)
    • Reduction in absenteeism (students)
    • ETTE-trained teachers meet up to discuss issues and form reading groups (but lack of understanding from some head teachers is an obstacle to their performance.)
    • Lack of follow-up support from schools
    • Mixed success of peer-support networks
    • ETTE-trained teachers felt they need more support or some sort of CPD
    • For long-time effectiveness some refresher courses are essential.
    • New techniques were imbedded in daily teaching practices.
    • In Nepal, the ETTE+ project by the British Council built on the ETTE successes in the ELT society and now they are starting ETTE++ to spread the successes of the initial project.
    • ETTE materials are still used in projects in Pakistan.
  • Projects need to be tracked to see what happened and learn from them.

Useful Links:

Need more? Contact Sue: sue@sueleatherassociates.com

Link to the video


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