Pedagogy

IATEFL 2018: Just like me: Near-peers as role models and content creators

Laura Patsko and Ben Goldstein

In our third post from IATEFL 2018, we’re sharing the live recording from Ben Goldstein and Laura Patsko’s talk on the power of realistic role models and how this can be harnessed for effective language learning.

The talk covers how to use peers as content creators, and how to effectively communicate the idea of a near-peer role model, so that students feel happy to work with them when language learning.

What is a near-peer role model?

In the talk, Laura defines the phrase as someone who can act as a role model for another learner, because they are similar to that learner in one or more ways.  The person acting as a role model may be the same age, gender or nationality as the learner.  It may even be their shared interests or life experiences that make them a good role model for a specific learner.

Using near-peer role models in the classroom

Laura and Ben continue to talk about how input from both language learners and teachers enable the creation of learner-centred content.  They also discuss avoiding ‘foreign language learning anxiety’ and combatting learners’ fears around variation and role models.

Watch the full video below to hear Laura and Ben’s tips for good practice when using near-peer role models.

See more recordings and articles from IATEFL.


  • Victoria Maude

    Hello! I’m doing a thesis involving near-peer role models and am trying to find the context of Leigh Clarke’s quotation so I can read their work. Could anyone point me in the right direction?

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