TESOL’s New Name

By now you’ve heard the good news: TESOL is now the TESOL International Association. As the president of TESOL’s Board of Directors, I can assure you that the decision to change the association’s name was not taken lightly. The Board and TESOL staff discussed the change at length, and given the ubiquity of the acronym “TESOL,” all agreed that a new name would better communicate what the association does and who it serves. I hope you are as excited about the change as I am.

Along with the name change, TESOL staff are working hard to provide members and other TESOL professionals with new ways to connect and communicate. Earlier this year we launched the TESOL Community, which has become the new communications hub for all the TESOL interest sections. In fact, maybe you’re participating in the current online discussion on putting research into practice, an event supporting the conference in Qatar on the same topic coming up in October. Later this fall, watch for online discussions with the TESOL 2012 keynote speakers.

Also later this fall, the association will launch a brand new Web site. The new site will incorporate suggestions that staff have solicited over the past year from members like you, and it will be much easier to navigate than the current site. You’ll have ready access to the resources you need to do your work.

All in all, I think this is an exciting time to be a TESOL member, and I’d like to hear from you. Please feel free to share your comments below and in the online discussion in the TESOL Community.


About Christine

Christine Coombe has a Ph.D in Foreign/Second Language Education from The Ohio State University. She is currently on the English faculty of Dubai Men's College. She is the former Testing and Measurements Supervisor at UAE University and Assessment Coordinator of Zayed University. Christine is co-editor of Assessment Practices (2003, TESOL Publications); co-author, A Practical Guide to Assessing English Language Learners (2007, University of Michigan Press); co-editor, Evaluating Teacher Effectiveness in EF/SL Contexts (2007, UMP); co-editor, Language Teacher Research in the Middle East (2007, TESOL Publications), Leadership in English Language Teaching and Learning (2008, UMP) and Applications of Task-based Learning in TESOL (2010, TESOL Publications). Christine’s forthcoming books are on task-based learning and reigniting, retooling and retiring in English language teaching. Christine has lived and worked in the Arabian Gulf for the past 19 years. In this capacity, she has served as President of TESOL Arabia and as the founder and co-chair of the TESOL Arabia Testing Special Interest Group who organize the Current Trends in English Language Testing (CTELT) Conference. During her tenure in the Middle East, she has won many awards including: 2002 Spaan Fellowship for Research in Second/Foreign Language Assessment; 2002-03 TOEFL Outstanding Young Scholar Award; TOEFL Board Grant for 2003-04, 2005-06, 2007-08 and 2009-10 for her work in delivering assessment training assessment in developing countries. Most recently she served on the TESOL Board of Directors as Convention Chair for Tampa 2006 and was the recipient of the Chancellor’s Teacher of the Year for 2003-04. She is currently TESOL President (2010-2013).
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8 Responses to TESOL’s New Name

  1. Nataliia Reutska says:

    The new name of the global organization TESOL International Association more clearly demonsrtates its nature and goals. It will definitely attract more attention of the global community. Thank you for working so hard to make these positive changes in the organization and to provide the better ways to connect and communicate for its members.

  2. David Barker says:

    As a 36-year member of our organization, I deeply appreciate the ongoing commitment to learners of English around the world. It’s a good name change….and not too scary for us older folks. 🙂

  3. Thanks to everyone for their positive comments and support of our new name.

  4. Liz England Liz England says:

    Dear Christine and All,

    I am thrilled to see that TESOL has finally changed its name to reflect its membership! As Rosa has pointed out, we represent more than 100 different countries around the world! As Board members in 2003-07, many of us pushed hard for this change and finally – it has happened! I sincerely hope that the name change also reflects some changes in the priorities, financial commitments and new initiatives on behalf of our non-US members. Of specific concern (and somewhat overdue for TESOL) is advocacy on behalf of TESOL members worldwide.

    Thank you for your leadership and efforts on behalf of TESOL International!

    Liz England

  5. Jayashree Mohanraj says:

    TESOL has sustained itself for over half a century for the cause of the international community of teachers of English. The appendage ‘International’ perhaps, will now attract more members from countries outside the US. I look forward to the new website and also the new plans of action.

  6. Bernard Spolsky says:

    I am happy to see that the arguments I supported some 30 years ago when I was TESOL president for internationalization have finally prevailed.

  7. Congratulations to the TESOL international community. As a Canadian residing in the Middle East, I appreciate the fact that TESOL will now be officially recognized as an International Association.

    Thank you.
    Nellie Deutsch, Ed.D.

  8. Guliya Shaykhutdinova says:

    Great idea! Whatever the name is, TESOL serves English language teachers all over the world to discuss emerging issues in the field, share knowledge and experience, gives the feeling of belonging to an international community. Looking forward to a new web site!

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