English Australia aims to establish a high professional and ethical standard in the work of member colleges and to assist member colleges in providing high quality educational programs.
English Australia member colleges are differentiated on the basis of the quality of the student experience and learner outcomes.
English Australia supports and promotes quality English language training and associated services in a range of different ways for both the English language sector as a whole and for English Australia member colleges.
Quality initiatives for the English language sector
English Australia’s quality initiatives for the English language sector of international education include:
- English Australia Conference
This national ELICOS sector event is of relevance to anyone involved in or providing services related to the delivery of English language programs to international learners. See www.eaconference.com.au. English Australia member colleges receive substantial discounts on the registration fees.
- English Australia Journal: the Australian journal of English language teaching
The English Australia Journal is the professional journal for the ELICOS sector in Australia. The journal, published twice a year, comprises peer-reviewed articles from TESOL practitioners and academics as well as a section on classroom practice and reviews of TESOL resources. English Australia member colleges receive three complimentary copies as a benefit of membership of the association.
- Action Research in ELICOS program
English Australia, supported by Cambridge English Language Assessment, established this program in 2010 to equip teachers with the skills to explore and address identified teaching challenges in the context of ELICOS and to share their findings. It is now a well-established program and is highly regarded in Australia and overseas.
- Professional development & information seminars/workshops delivered in each state and territory
The calendar of events is available on the English Australia website. English Australia member colleges receive substantial discounts on the registration fees.
- ELT Barometer
The ELT Barometer is an independently conducted national ELICOS student satisfaction survey conducted with the aim of driving continuous improvement across the sector.
- Close engagement with regulatory bodies
English Australia has regular meetings with the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) and the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) to maintain a focus on issues associated with the ELICOS sector regulatory framework.
- English Australia Awards Program
English Australia operates a program of Awards recognising contributions to the ELICOS sector including:
- Lifetime Achievement Award
- John Gallagher Memorial Professional Bursary
- Award for Contribution to Professional ELICOS Practice (sponsored by Pearson Australia)
- Award for Innovation (sponsored by ETS TOEFL)
- Award for Academic Leadership (sponsored by IELTS Australia)
- Award for Action Research in ELICOS (sponsored by Cambridge English Language Assessment)
Quality initiatives for English Australia Member Colleges
English Australia’s quality initiatives and resources exclusively for English Australia member colleges include:
- Membership Criteria – applicants for English Australia membership must meet strict entry criteria;
- Code of Conduct;
- Disciplinary Procedures for dealing with complaints against member colleges;
- a Tuition Assurance Scheme (TAS) that protects ELICOS students on visas other than a student visa;
- Guides to Best Practice in ELICOS (see below);
- discounted rates to encourage attendance at Professional Development events, including the national English Australia Conference and state/territory branch organised activities.
Best Practice Guides
English Australia regularly prepares Guides to Best Practice in ELICOS (Best Practice Guides), collating information provided by member institutions, who represent the full spectrum of provider types, purpose and locations in Australia, and incorporating current TESOL research.
English Australia takes compliance with the ESOS Act, the National Code and the ELICOS National Standards as minimum standards. Within its overall strategic plan of facilitating higher levels of professional practice within English Australia member colleges, English Australia provides Best Practice Guides in order to achieve five main goals:
1. to ensure that English Australia member colleges are encouraged to reflect on how they deliver quality programs and service to international students;
2. to support English Australia member colleges in the development of their policies, practices and procedures;
3. to provide a benchmarking tool for English Australia member colleges;
4. to provide the opportunity for English Australia member colleges to be part of a community of best practice; and
5. to instil confidence in all stakeholders who have dealings with English Australia member colleges.
Guides to Best Practice in ELICOS are available only to staff at member colleges. Topics include:
- Providing Student Support Services
- Monitoring Student Progress
- Direct Entry Programs
- Monitoring Student Satisfaction
- Disaster Management