The ‘Interaction for Learning’ Framework: A tool for learning in diverse classrooms

Jennifer MacDonald
Head Teacher, ESL (English as a Second/Additional Language) Programs
College of Continuing Education
Dalhousie University

Birds of a feather often flock together, even in our classrooms. Despite the increasing diversity of the student body at many institutions, students often gravitate toward others of similar linguistic or cultural backgrounds, and the benefits of learning in a diverse setting may remain unrealized. Many educators experience frustration when faced with this tendency. This is a workshop on the ‘Interaction for Learning’ Framework (ILF), which was developed at the University of Melbourne to help faculty and instructors structure the learning environment to increase interaction between domestic and international students. Participants will learn about the ILF, and how to apply it in the context of their curriculum and classroom pedagogies to facilitate interaction between students and the synthesis of course material. The ILF can help improve the achievement of learning outcomes and move us one step closer to truly inclusive classrooms.

This session was previously presented at the Dalhousie Conference on University Teaching and Learning, mainly providing an overview of the framework. However, on this occasion, we will have more time to go over examples and an opportunity for participants to consider the framework in their own contexts.

Presenter Bio

Jennifer MacDonald is Head Teacher of ESL Programs at Dalhousie University. She publishes and presents on topics at the intersection of applied linguistics and the internationalization of higher education. Her most recent research tackles the question of how to ensure a more equitable academic experience for students of diverse linguistic backgrounds at Canadian universities. Follow Jennifer at @Jen_Mac_Donald.




Killam Library, Room B400

Truro (via video-conference): FCC Meeting Room (228)