British Council hosts New Directions East Asia Conference in Indonesia


British Council hosts New Directions East Asia Conference in Indonesia

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10th edition of the British Council’s flagship language testing and assessment conference provides a dynamic space for testing practitioners, policymakers and implementers in East Asia and the UK

JAKARTA – 9 December 2022 – The British Council today announced the 10th edition of its New Directions East Asia Conference being held in Indonesia from 9-10 December 2022. The conference brings together the professional language testing and learning community to collectively engage with the challenges and trends affecting education and assessment systems in the East Asia region and beyond.

The conference will explore the theme of Bridging Divides: Towards a comprehensive approach to language teaching, learning and assessment – which considers the crucial role of standards and frameworks in breaking down barriers between teaching, learning and assessment in the comprehensive learning system, and how education systems can leverage test standards to achieve a holistic approach to language proficiency goals. This has been the British Council’s flagship conference for language testing and assessment since 2013.

This year’s New Directions East Asia conference will deliver a two-day concentrated agenda of high-profile, high-impact presentations and discussions in a face-to-face format, preceded and followed by the online dissemination of quality content and curated presentations on key conference topics.

The conference is officiated by I Kadek Agus Arya Wibawa, S.E., M.M., Deputy Mayor of Denpasar; Sara Pierson, Director Exams, British Council; Summer Xia, Country Director, British Council Indonesia; and Prof. Utami Widiati, President of TEFLIN. Key speakers at the conference include policymakers, influencers and practitioners in teaching, testing and the wider educational context, such as Anindito Aditomo, Ph.D, Head of Agency for Standardization, Curriculum, and Assessment in Education, Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology; Professor Barry O’Sullivan OBE, Head of Assessment Research & Development, British Council; Dr. Neus Figueras Casanovas, Ministry of Education Catalonia – Spain/ University of Barcelona; Dr. Willy Renandya, Principal Lecturer, National Institute of Education, Singapore; and Dr. Guoxing Yu, Professor of Language Assessment University of Bristol, among others.

Sara Pierson, Director Exams, British Council, said: “Language testing opens doors to educational, workplace and international mobility opportunities for people all over the world and is a key driver of educational reform. Since 2013, the New Directions conference series has brought together a range of stakeholders to engage in discussions around this important topic, creating a valuable forum for the exchange of ideas and sharing of knowledge in the language assessment field.”

Summer Xia, Country Director, British Council Indonesia, added: “Teaching of English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) in Indonesia has run for more than 75 years. Increasingly, English language qualifications have continued to show its prominence in responding to the increasing demands from the higher education sector and the labour market. We are delighted to host our regional flagship New Directions conference in Indonesia so that we can facilitate conversations about the development of English language teaching, learning, and assessment across East Asia. This year’s New Directions conference will address the needs of testing practitioners, policymakers and implementers, and other stakeholders with an interest in the role of language assessment in strengthening education systems. Through this unique platform and opportunity, we will bring the UK expertise and enable participants to compare notes, share best practice, and explore cutting-edge solutions that will benefit local communities and achieve global standards.”

The last two New Directions conferences were held online due to the Covid 19 pandemic, and prior to that the conference has been held in Yokohama, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, Hanoi, Seoul, Tokyo, and Beijing.