March 28, 2016
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SHARING FROM AROUND THE GLOBE
FIFTY YEARS GROWING TOGETHER
Mabel Gallo, Argentina TESOL

Happy 50th birthday dearest TESOL! The recent change in your name to TESOL International Association reflects the expansion of the profession.  In the early 60s, the syllabus of University English Departments contained mostly British and American Literature, they did not necessarily deal with the, at the time, rather recent acronym EFL. So, to avoid misunderstandings, in 1966 our association was born as Teachers of English to Speakers other Languages

Now fifty years have gone by and the name has appropriately been changed to TESOL International Association. The expansion of our profession brought about significant changes.  In the course of all these years an appalling number of dichotomies turned up and have been dealt with, from scientific, cultural and artistic points of view: A Science or an Art? Form or Content?  Native or Non native? Practice or Research? Memorization or Critical thinking? Many more questions have kept us all these years debating, agreeing, disagreeing and doing research. 

As a TESOL professional my main interest has been to make teacher development permanent in our teacher education programs. My early participation in the profession has been decisive to obtain the necessary abilities to keep abreast of the demanding need for change in this expanding profession. TESOL, the institution, helped me enormously to encourage professional development not only in several Argentine provinces but also in neighboring countries.

In addition, serving on the TESOL Board of Directors from 2003 to 2006 gave me the opportunity to network with colleagues from different parts of the world, marvelous professionals with whom I exchanged the richest and most diverse multicultural experiences. 

My warmest wishes for very successful and peaceful international communication worldwide for many more years to come.


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