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Yerevan and Echmiadzin Teachers Attend Workshop on Project-Based Learning

YEREVAN, Armenia ‒ On April 6, 2018, the American University of Armenia (AUA) hosted 25 high school teachers from Yerevan and Echmiadzin for a workshop on project-based learning (PBL). The hands-on workshop was facilitated by Christopher Ray, who had been at AUA for three days conducting workshops for faculty, students in the Masters of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (MA TEFL) program, and instructors in the University’s Experimental English Classes.

PBL is a student-centered teaching and learning strategy helping students develop problem-solving, communication, and collaboration skills while addressing real-world situations. Studies show that PBL increases long-term retention of content and greatly improves student attitude toward learning. The PBL workshop was organized as part of AUA’s continued efforts to collaborate with community partners to enhance teaching and improve learning.

“Our master’s program in Teaching English as a Foreign Language and AUA’s Center for Research in Applied Linguistics have built a network of schools and organizations that we closely work with. Many of them support our student teachers with their practical fieldwork and capstone projects. This workshop was a small thank-you note to our partners. I’m grateful to Chris Ray and the AUA team who made his professional development sessions available to our larger community of teachers in and outside Yerevan,” said Dr. Irshat Madyarov, Chair of AUA’s MA TEFL program and associate professor.

Ray has been teaching since 2010 in a wide variety of settings, from middle school to university in the Philippines, Nepal, Armenia, and the United States. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Chicago and a Master of Science degree in Teaching, Learning, and Curriculum from Drexel University. As an AUA lecturer from 2015 to 2017, he conducted several PBL and student engagement workshops to share his ideas and demonstrate his commitment to student-centered learning techniques in the classroom.

Founded in 1991, the American University of Armenia (AUA) is a private, independent university located in Yerevan, Armenia, and affiliated with the University of California. AUA provides a global education in Armenia and the region, offering high-quality graduate and undergraduate studies, encouraging civic engagement, and promoting public service and democratic values.