Simple English ~ Nicola Prentis

Thoughts on ELT, English and whatever else comes into my head

ELT conference 2015 male:female plenaries

men table pipes

Plenaries/Keynotes/Featured speakers (From Nov 2015 – Oct 2016)

Running total 75:59:41 male majority:female majority:equal

Number of slots in total 658.  male = 360, female = 298

NB: 0.5 = shared talks


Majority male events

Digital Ireland (2:0)

MexTESOL (9:3)

BrazTesol: Mycraft — Rebooting ELT Skills (2:0)


GLoCALL (3:1)

TESOL Italy (3:1)

BESIG (1:0)

ACEIA (1:0)

TESOL France (2:1)

Braz-Tesol: The road ahead (1:0)

Adaptive Learning in Practice (4:1)

International Conference on Corpus Linguistics and Technology Advancement (4:0)

Thailand TESOL (2:1)

Global Conference on Contemporary Research in English Studies: Global Perspectives (9:4 site info unclear)

Reading Because You Want to: The Missing Link in Language Education (1:0)

IH Barcelona (3:2 — has an awful track record)



TESOL Arabia (8:2)

TESOL Spain (2:1)


GURT 2016 Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics (3:1)

Braz-TESOL  TD SIG (1:0)


Conference on Language, Learning & Culture (2:1)


COABE/TALAE National Conference (7:1) unclear how many of these are plenaries

 GlobELT (3:1)
University of Calgary Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching (2:1)
Growing thru challenges: blooming and blossoming (5:1) [can’t tell which are plenaries]
TESL London Spring Conference  (Canadian) (1:0)
PASE/IATEFL LAMSIG conference (10:4)
3rd Annual Conference of the Asian Association for Language Assessment (4.5:1.5)
JALT Pan-SIG Conference (3:0)
ELT Day at Disal Rio (2:1) [speakers, no plenaries]
KOTESOL National Conference for 2016 (1:0)
British Council Algeria 3rd conference (5:0) [confirmed via Twitter sources, couldn’t locate program)
JALT TBLSIG: Task-based Language Learning in Asia Conference (2:0)
19th International Postgraduate Conference in Applied Linguistics (2:1) [for some reason the female is not listed on the conf homepage, only in the programme itself]


Majority female events

TESOL Kuwait (1:3)


The 14th Symposium on Second Language Writing (Keynote: 2:1; Plenaries 3:7 = Overall 5:8)

JALT (1:2)

TESOL Singapore Regional Conference (2:1)

ELT Connect Symposium (0:2)

International conference on English across the curriculum (1:2)

LLAS 11th annual e-learning Symposium 2016 (1:2)


IATEFL MaWSIG (speakers, no plenary 2:5)

ELT Ireland Annual conference (0:2)

BC TEAL (0:1)


NELTA (1:2)


ExcitELT (2:4)

ACAL-ACTA Conference (4:3)

HUPE (0:1)

IATEFL 50 (2:3)

ETAI Spring Conference (0:1)

Alternative Income Streams: A Self-Employment Discovery Event  (0:1)

IH Torun International Teacher Training Day (0:1)

TESL Saskatchewan Conference 2016 (0:3)

Innovate ELT (3:5)

Symposium on Teaching English for Tourism (2.3:4.6) [one talk shared, no plenaries, just talks)

TESL Ottawa Spring AGM (0:1)

TESL Niagara Spring conference (0.5:3.5) [no plenaries, concurrent talks only]


Challenges and Opportunities in the Brazilian EFL Market (1:4) [no plenaries, it seems]

CoTESOL Spring Conference (0:1)

III Congresso de Ensino de Língua Inglesa (0:3)

TOSCON 16 (0:1)



Equal events 

English UK Teachers’ Conference (1:1)

TESL Ontario (1:1)

4th International Conference on Language, Education and Diversity (3:3)

The Image Conference (1:1)

Trends in Medical Language Teaching and Learning (2:2)

Qatar University International Conference on English Language Teaching (1:1 though it also lists two “featured speakers” both male)

SOJO University Teaching and Learning Forum 2016 (1:1)

LASIG (1.5:1.5 — one shared talk)

ETAI Mini-conference & Northern Event (1:1)

International Linguistic Association 61st Annual Conference (1:1)


TESOL Greece (2:2)

Teachers Research! Chile (1:1)


BCTEAL Annual Conference  (1:1)

Change and Innovation in the MENA Teaching/Learning Settings (1:1)

EALTA (1:1)

TESL New Brunswick Spring Conference (1:1) [one plenary, one feature workshop]


First DEAiA Spring Institute:Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) in the 21st century (1:1)

14th ELTA (3:3)

International Language Symposium 2017 (3:3) [I am not completely sure if the Friday plenaries are two concurrent sessions or not, in any case it would still be equal)

25th BETA-IATEFL Annual International Conference (3:3)

ENELIN (2:2) [This info all in Portuguese and I can’t be sure these are the plenaries, or even all of them]

MATSDA/University of Liverpool Conference (4:4)

2nd IATEFL ReSIG/BAU International TEACHERS RESEARCH! Conference (3:3)

Incorporating Communication Skills into your Language Training (3:3) [no plenary]

VII Congresso Mundial de Estilos de Aprendizagem (1:1)

SEAMEO RETRAC 7th International TESOL Conference (1:1) [assuming these are plenaries, they are the only speakers listed]
EUROSLA 26 (2:2)
Conference on Creativity in Language Learning and Teaching Research (1:1) [link didn’t work]
MIDTESOL Conference 2016 (2:2) [Featured speakers, could not find info specifically re plenary]
Terra Urban Education Conference: English Language Learners (1:1)



TESOL Nicaragua


Shawnee Hill IEP Camp


BALEAP Password conference

Teaching ESL to Survivors of War & Torture Trauma

Statistics for Language Research

III Congresso Nacional de Formação de Professores (CNFP)
CATESOL Northern Regional Conference

International Association for Blended Learning Conference 2016

8th Linguistic Landscapes International Workshop

III Congreso para Profesores de Inglés como Idioma Extranjero

Sunshine State TESOL 38th Annual Conference



11 comments on “ELT conference 2015 male:female plenaries

  1. Fiona Thomas' ELT Blog
    November 10, 2015

    Well done, Nicola. Do people still want to argue that there isn’t a gender problem with the choice of plenary speakers at ELT conferences?

    • Nicola
      November 10, 2015

      The arguing against takes a lot of different forms. They think the bigger problem is me being mean for pointing it out than that it exists. Or people say gender shouldn’t be a reason for choosing speakers and it Speaker Y and Speaker Y were chosen on merit and it would be wrong to take gender into account. In fact, it would be a worse problem to consciously choose on gender rather than unconsciously choose on gender as happens now. And others say “OK this year it was like this but last year it was different” or “look at all the workshops/seminars/papers given by women – the plenaries are just one factor of a conference. I find it incredible!

  2. englishsuccessacademyJaime
    November 10, 2015

    How do plenaries get chosen?

    • Nicola
      November 10, 2015

      Good question! They invite people based on their own agendas – eg who has published in the area, who they have seen speak, who they think will draw tickets sales. The fact this makes for a vicious circle of male plenaries is not as high on that agenda as it should be.

      • Fiona Thomas' ELT Blog
        November 10, 2015

        I agree completely. Another response I get is that they don’t know of any good women plenary speakers! Obviously if their choice is based on who currently speaks and the current male-dominated plenary circuit continues, they never will know of the great women out there who would deliver some amazing plenaries.

        Having said this, my feeling and experience is that at ELT conferences with a specific focus, there seems to be a better gender balance and wider variety of plenary speakers.

      • Nicola
        November 10, 2015

        Yes, this is why Russ and I have this initiative going
        Working our way through contacting those nominated so far. Hopefully it will be useful

  3. Tyson Seburn
    March 1, 2016

    TOSCON16 ( this May from TESL Toronto is Nina Spada as only plenary. 🙂

    • Nicola
      March 1, 2016

      Thanks Tyson, I’m only up to the current month but I’ll be sure to include that when I get to May, at the end of April!

      • Tyson Seburn
        March 2, 2016

        Ahh, hadn’t paid attention to timelines, just got the notice of one TESL Toronto event listed here (Teaching ESL to Victims of …). It’s on Thursday, and as of yet, we have no idea who the speakers will be since they’ll be reps from the organisation we invited to speak.

  4. russmayne
    September 29, 2016

    I’m impressed that you managed to keep this up!

    • Nicola
      October 3, 2016

      Trust me, it has been a mammoth effort of will. It’s the most boring task ever.

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This entry was posted on November 10, 2015 by in ELT and tagged , , , , .
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