David Knott


18th February 2017:

University of Exeter Ed.D. Research Forum

Unviersity of Exeter, Dubai Knowledge Park

Paper Presentation

Title: New TESOL Faculty Orientation: Comparing the benefits of formal versus informal organizational socialization.

New Faculty Orientation (NFO) is an area of special importance for teachers in TESOL because of the nature of the typical TESOL teaching career: many teachers move from one corner of the globe to another to various types of institutions, where new teachers generally have little experience or knowledge of the organizational culture or the local customs and culture but are expected to assimilate and almost instantly become fully functioning members of faculty. However, the efficacy of informal practices of new colleagues compared to the formalized programs organized by institutions is under-researched, as is the long-lasting effect organizational socialization can have on teachers’ attitudes and the culture of the institution. This longitudinal research project examines the experiences of several cohorts of new English teachers at a small college in the United Arab Emirates over a period of three years, looking at their adaptation to their new working situation, with special attention paid to their relations with colleagues in light of the institution’s established orientation program.

July 2016:

University of Exeter Ed.D. Research Forum

University of Exeter, St. Luke's Campus

Paper Presentation

Title: Prepared or not: A critical inquiry into the orientation of a group of newly hired expatriate English teachers

The research addresses the induction process of a group of 6 newly-hired, expatriate English teachers in a college in the United Arab Emirates. From a critical perspective, the study problematizes that orientation program and explores how shortcomings in the process left many of them with negative feelings towards the institution and their new positions, and how that harmed them as individuals, which could affect their students. 

March 2016:

TESOL Arabia Conference


TEACHMeet Symposium - Presentation

Title: Teacher choices regarding the inclusion of culture in TESOL lessons

An abridged version of the presentation delivered at the Exeter Research Forum in February with a focus on the cultural exchanges in the actual classroom that teachers initiate for a variety of reasons. The goal was to stimulate discussion in the session on how we (teachers) introduce cultural elements into the classroom in order to motivate students. 

February 2016:

University of Exeter Ed.D. Research Forum

University of Exeter, Dubai Knowledge Village

Paper presentation

Title: Teacher choices regarding the inclusion of culture in TESOL lessons

Language is one of the defining elements of culture, generally viewed as impossible to wholly separate the teaching of one without the other. In the world of teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), however, including culture in language lessons becomes a much less-straightforward topic. In such a multicultural environment, determining how and what to include is extremely complicated and can have either negative or positive ramifications. This study examines how teachers include cultural topics related to themselves and their students, and how that varies depending on their socioeducational contexts. It also looks into teachers’ decision-making processes, and how that might be different regarding those contexts. Findings suggest that the teachers in the study draw on a multitude of sources and inspirations in their approach to culture in lessons, and they do so primarily because they believe it helps in developing their students’ English language ability.

Professional Meetings

3rd February 2017:

TESOL Arabia Development Course

Dubai - Emirates Aviation College

A two-day course focusing on the 'Latest trends in teaching, learning, and assessment'.

Graduate School Skills Workshops

12th June 2016:

Developing skills for research collaboration

University of Exeter, Streatham Campus


A one-day workshop organized by the GW4 Alliance (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, and Exeter) bringing together 25 doctoral students from each institution and a variety of disciplines.

The program included

  • Expert training in communicating your research to potential collaborators
  • Reflective exercises to identify the characteristics of effective collaborative teams
  • Practical sessions to develop collaborative projects
  • Networking opportunities with researchers across the GW4 alliance.