Armin Berger is a Senior Lecturer in the English Department at the University of Vienna, teaching courses in the language competence and teacher education programmes. His research interests include all aspects of language testing and assessment. More specifically, he is interested in assessing (academic) speaking and the operationalisation of speaking proficiency. He has presented and published his work on rating scale validation and language assessment literacy.
Sarah Mercer is Professor of Foreign Language Teaching at the University of Graz, Deputy Head of the Centre for Teaching and Learning (University of Graz), and Director of the Doctorate Programme “Sprachendidaktik und Sprachlehr-/lernforschung” (University of Graz).
Her research interests include all aspects of language learner psychology, in particular, affect, beliefs, mindsets and the self. Recently, she has become especially interested in complexity perspectives in these areas. She is also the author of the book Towards an Understanding of Language Learner Self-concept.
Sarah is a member of the following professional organisations: AAAL, AAUTE, BAAL, IATEFL (Research SIG), ÖGSD & TESOL and regularly serves as a reviewer of several international journals. She has frequently presented at conferences and workshops throughout Europe and in the United States.
In 2012, David Newby retired as head of the Department of Language Teaching Didactics and Research in the Department of English Studies at the University of Graz. His main areas of lecturing and research are second language acquisition, pedagogical grammar and language teaching didactics in general. Until November 2012, he was coordinator of the Doctoral Programme of the Faculty of Humanities, Academic Director of the foreign languages section of the University Didactics Centre and Vice-chair of the Faculty of Humanities curriculum commission. From 2008-2011 he was co-founder and chairman of the Austrian Association for Language Didactics.
David has held plenary lectures and workshops for teachers almost all over the world. Many of these lectures were commissioned by the British Council or the Council of Europe. David Newby is author of the book Grammar for Communication and many other publications.
Talk by Executive Director of the European Centre for Modern Languages Sarah Breslin
Since October 2013, Sarah Breslin has been the Executive Director of the European Centre for Modern Languages, an Institution of the Council of Europe, based in Graz, Austria.
Sarah is a passionate linguist with a thorough understanding of both policy and practice in language education and general education. She has worked in a range of sectors and locations such as in Catalonia as a TEFL teacher before she then moved into Higher Education, where she was Head of Modern Languages in the Faculty of Tourism. On returning to the UK, she worked for the Scottish Qualifications Authority, where her focus was on education policy both at UK and EU Level, as well as cross-border qualification recognition.
Talk by Julia Warner
Julia specializes in training programmes that combine communication skills with English language skills. Her areas of expertise are among others English for conflict management, diplomatic communication and English as a medium of instruction.