DIY*- Delta module 1
Continual professional development is very important for me as a teacher. That is why, after 15 years of teaching experience, a BA in English, a M.Ed in Tesol, I decided it was time to do the Delta
and I did. But my way. As the Delta is quite pricey and after some of my friends suggested it, I thought, “why not try studying on my own for module 1?” I did. I passed. This is my story.
What is module 1 of the Cambridge Delta?
Module 1 is Understanding Language, Methodology and Resources for Teaching. It is a written exam and there are two papers ( for more information go here and here).
Well, I had been teaching for fifteen years and I already had an MA. So, I did feel a bit comfy in my ‘teacher’ skin.
How did I prepare?
- I found a center that would be willing to take me on as an external candidate. In my case it was Celt Athens
- I googled Delta module one suggested reading list and I found loads of websites with suggestions on what to read in order to pass module one.
- I looked at my bookshelf and found books I already had from my BA or MA and made a Delta module 1 shelf.
- I searched online to see if any of the suggested reading material were available and saved them in a folder on my desktop. The My Books folder (Scribd and Google books do have some of the books from the reading list).
- I found all the examiner reports and past papers available. This took some time but Google was my best bud those days. I saved everything in a different folder. The exams folder.
- I found blogs with tips on how to pass module one and put them on my favourites list.
and then I started studying……..
The books I read from cover to cover:
About Language by S. Thornburry
How to teach English by J. Harmer
The Practice of English Language teaching by J. Harmer
Teaching English Pronunciation by J. Kenworthy
Testing for the language Teacher by A. Hughes
Second Language Acquisition by R. Ellis
and I made notes. Loads of notes. this is actually how I learn. I underline or highlight stuff and then I make notes in my notebooks. I like using different colours, and I try to make things look pretty. Do not ask me why. It just makes studying and note taking much more fun for me.
As I said earlier, I found all the exam papers available online and I printed them. I know this is not very eco-friendly, but I like to be able to circle and underline rubrics so that’s why I printed everything. I then started doing the tests by myself and tried to mark myself based on the examiners reports. I looked very carefully at the examiners reports and made notes of the suggestions the examiners made. If I was unhappy with my performance, I would do the test again. Most improtantly, I timed myself!
When I found theories I had never neard of before or knew nothing about in the past papers, then I would do a new Google search and try to find information to add to my notes.
Phonetics. I did not like phonetic transcriptions. I found it very difficult and I struggled a lot with this during my module one exam prep. I would phonetically transcribe words and then go to the Canbridge online dictionary
to check the phonetic transcription. Connected speech was harder which is why I went back to my uni modules and found everything I had done on connected speech and tried to figure out how to write a whole script. This was the most challenging Delta topic
I work full time, so mornings and afternoons. I usually finish work at 9 pm. I did the same while I was preparing for module one. That meant that I squeezed in a few study hours during the week but most of the studying went on during the weekends. I started preparing in Septemebr and took exams in the first week of December.
Is this for you?
Do you need…….
✓ to study with others?
Then, nope, this solution is not for you. If you decide to prepare by yourself for the Delta module 1, you need to be self-disciplined and quite organised. You are on your own. No one is around to help you. May I also mention that I only got a pass. I did not get a merit or a distinction and maybe the fact that I prepared by myself did affect my grade, meaning that maybe I would have got something higher, had I done a course. I still learnt a lot though, about myself and teaching. So, what do you think? Is it worth a shot?
*DIY: Do It Yourself
Till next time……