Teaching in the south of Morocco for the last 13 years has meant having to travel to other places for my training. I did my CELTA in Prague and taught there for a year, then traveled to Barcelona to do my DELTA Module 2 during the summer of 2012. I was hoping to do the Module 1 exam soon after that, but was unable to and then found myself getting “out of touch” as time elapsed. I was therefore very pleased to discover that I was able to do a two-week course to prepare for the exam, in beautiful Seville!
There is no one way to prepare for the Delta Module 1 exam, and I guess it is perfectly possible to do it by yourself – and some do, quite successfully – but having the support of both the tutors and a team of teachers, does make the preparation easier and much more fun! The tutors in Seville were both very experienced and supportive, and sharing the course with a team of professional peers from around the world – occasionally around a serving of tapas! – made the learning experience more valuable and enjoyable.
A number of teachers prepare for the exam while doing Module 2, or Module 3 (the extended assignment) as they are normally both due at the same time, but I appreciated being able to focus totally on the exam during the course.
Having said all this, the biggest justification for me for doing an intensive exam preparation course lies in the nature of the Module 1 exam itself. Success in the Module 1 exam seems to be as much about learning the requirements of the exam, as knowing about language awareness and teaching methodology. The exam is not about trying to be original and creative with one’s writing, but is about stating the obvious and ticking boxes!
The course did allow me to analyse language in great detail, and I did learn a lot about discourse analysis and testing, to name just a few, but most of all, it explained the structure of the exam and gave me an understanding of the criteria and what Cambridge were looking for in the answers.
For me, the most valuable parts of the course were getting plenty of timed exam practice and useful feedback, including exam technique and study tips. Every teacher training course also gives an opportunity to observe experienced teacher trainers at work and learn some techniques which I can then apply in my own teacher training sessions back in Morocco. I have been doing in-house teacher training courses for the past 7 years and this course in Seville gave me the inspiration to consider teacher training as a future career move.