The Image Conference is the only conference in the world exclusively on the use of image in ELT. So far the conference has been held in Barcelona in conjunction with UAB Idiomes, Brasilia in conjunction with BRAZ-TESOL, Cordoba Spain in collaboration with IH Córdoba, and in Munich in collaboration with the Munich English Teachers’ Association. It is held in a different city every year. The two key aims of the conference are to put media and images at the centre of the language learning agenda, and to offer guidance on using media and images critically and creatively in language teaching in the age of the Internet.
The Image Conference can be summed up in three words: Innovative, Practical and Effective
The Image Conference is the first conference dedicated solely to the innovative and creative use of images in English language teaching.
A recurring theme throughout the conferences has been the highlighting of the educational benefits of not just using media and images inside and outside the classroom, but also of creating media and images. Many speakers such as Ceri Jones, Lindsay Clandfield, Ben Goldstein, Jamie Keddie, Graham Stanley, Kyle Mawer, Paul Driver, Jane Arnold, Fiona Maucline, Carla Arena, Hugh Dellar and Kieran Donaghy have looked at innovative ways of integrating images into the school system and suggested ways teachers could develop to become successful 21st century educators.
The innovative goals of The Image Conference are to put media and images at the centre of the language learning agenda, and to offer guidance on using media and images critically and creatively in language teaching in the age of the Internet.
The Image Conference is a highly practical and adaptable project. The practicality and adaptability of the project is reflected in the fact that The Image Conference has been held very successfully and with excellent feedback from both speakers and delegates in two very different contexts: firstly, in Barcelona, Spain; and then in Brasilia, Brazil.
The know-how and expertise of the organisers of The Image Conference is put at the service of the educational institutions and teaching associations who want to hold a conference in their city. The organisers are already in negotiations with teaching associations worldwide about holding the conference in their cities in the near future.
A dominant theme through the two Image Conferences so far has been the many educational benefits of using images in language teaching. Many speakers highlighted how effective the use of different types of images is in promoting creativity, critical thinking and collaborative learning.
The best way to underline the effectiveness of The Image Conference is to let the delegates give their opinion:
“The Image Conference has provided a new perspective which challenges the well-established vision of the praxis of ELT through a methodologies and approaches view. It is only by changing the way we look at things that we will be able to bring innovative and creative practice to our field. I think this is the richest way in which the Image Conference has contributed to my work as a professional.”
Valéria França, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
“Great sessions, great admin work, great venue, and very fair conference fee. I’ve been to dozens of conferences over the past ten years and this was the best. Congratulations to the organisers.”
Brendan Wightman, Madrid, Spain
“The Image Conference was an important experience for me. The sessions were rich with all kinds of practical lesson ideas as well as some of the theory behind the presenters’ teaching practices, and I came away inspired to integrate what I had learned into my own teaching practice.”
Jodi Ellen Stolzenbach, Hamburg, Germany