December 2008
Volume 12, Number 3

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From the Editors


This is a special issue about English education in India. We would like to invite other qualified scholars to submit proposals for future special issues, focusing on any of the topics covered by TESL-EJ.

Best wishes,

Maggie Sokolik, Editor

Thomas Robb, Co-Editor

Special Issue: English Education in India

In December of 2007, I was fortunate to be invited to speak at the Conference on Academic Publishing in ESL, held at the English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, India. I also had the opportunity to speak at Osmania University and the Directorate of Collegiate Education, both in Hyderabad. More importantly, however, I had the great fortune to meet and speak with dozens of scholars, students, and administrators working in the area of English education in India.

One issue that emerged from the conference, and in our discussions, was that there was a need to improve the interchange about English education in India. With its colonial history, and complex relationship with the English language in relation to local languages, as well as more recent pressures from globalization and economic growth, India has much to teach others about the paths of English education, both official and unofficial.

We hope that this special issue goes some way in opening a larger discussion about English education not only in former colonial regions, but also about the forces of globalization, and their impact on how English is taught, spoken, and perceived throughout the world.

I would like to gratefully acknowledge my co-editor, Professor Premakumari Dheram, who extended the invitation to visit Hyderabad and to speak at the academic publishing conference. In addition, I would like to thank Rajni Badlani, of the U.S. Department of State, which sponsored my stay in Hyderabad, Vijay Koganti of the Directorate of Collegiate Education, and the faculty of Osmania University. In addition, I would like to thank all the students and faculty who made me feel very welcomed in India.

Finally, a special thanks to all the contributors to this special issue.

--Maggie Sokolik, Editor, TESL-EJ
  University of California, Berkeley, USA

This issue offers multiple perspectives on the English language education scene in India. The articles included highlight primarily two things: first, the varied nature of the challenges inherent to the situation and secondly, the resourcefulness of the teachers in evolving appropriate pedagogical practices. Indeed, this may be considered a representative sample of what millions of English teachers, across the country, may be doing although they are not documenting their experiments. I sincerely hope that this issue will inspire at least a few of them to share their insights through the medium of academic publishing.

I thank Dr. Maggie Sokolik and Dr. Rajni Badlani who have encouraged and supported me in making this India issue possible.

--Premakumari Dheram,
  English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, India