Teacher in front of class
EQUIPT-ELT English language training

Improving English Language Training in Tanzania

Swahili is the language of education for primary schools in Tanzania, but at secondary and higher education levels, all classes are taught in English. Although student registration numbers are improving across the country, the transition from Swahili to English can lead to difficulties in communication and understanding for both teachers and their students, resulting in poorer pass rates.

EQUIP-T ELT is our Education Development and Quality Improvement Project for English Language Teacher Training in Tanzania. We work closely with the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) and the UK Department of International Development (DfID) to provide world-class expertise to improve the quality of English teacher training in Tanzania.

The ultimate beneficiaries of this English Language Training project are the young students in secondary schools, who have benefitted from improved teaching methods. The project had reached over 230,000 Form One students from 800 schools across Tanzania by March 2016, when it was handed over to the Ministry. Below you can download the new materials (‘Baseline’) endorsed by the MoEST for use in secondary schools nationally.

How does it work?

  • Local teacher training college tutors and student teachers work with world-class teaching trainers, specifically developing teaching skills and communication in English.
  • EQUIP-T ELT provides support and guidance on better primary to secondary syllabus transition for Form 1 Students, specifically consulting on the national English-learning readiness course (Baseline).

To ensure nationwide impact and standardisation of quality, all English language teacher-trainers representing EQUIP-T ELT will be recruited by the British Council. 34 Teacher trainers will be stationed at various Certificate and Diploma Teacher Training Centres (TTCs) around the country, with each trainer providing on-site coaching and training support to their region throughout the project.

A further two senior teacher trainers, based in Dar es Salaam, will support the resident trainers through regular contact, monitoring visits and regular workshops. The senior trainers provide technical support, acting as key liaisons with the Department of Teacher Training and relevant governmental centres. Multiple teams of professional volunteers with international expertise also work alongside the English Language Training teachers.

What we hope to achieve

  • By the beginning of 2016, almost 700,000 Form 1 students will have received better Baseline preparation (Swahili-English education transition), with a further 450,000 students benefitting annually from then on.
  • By the end of 2016, all governmental Teacher Training Colleges will have better systems in place to deliver quality teacher training, with 70,000 primary and secondary level student teachers improving their English language and general teaching skills.
  • Over 200 school inspectors will have access to an evaluation system of the new materials and the MoEVT has committed to allocating funds for continued projects initiatives from 2016 onwards.

What our teacher trainers say

'I have over 20 years’ English Language Training and Teaching, as well as materials development experience in ten countries across four continents. Born in Kenya, I’m very excited to be back in this part of the world and being able to make a valuable and sustainable difference in the lives of future generations of Tanzanians!'  – Stephen Ogier, English Language Training teacher

'I’m privileged to be part of such a unique project and opportunity, being involved in the development of the education system in Tanzania. We trainers are sowing the seeds for a new and sustainable standard of ELT in primary and secondary schools, by being an integral part of daily life at each Teacher Training College in the country. Our aims are big, but through partnership they will be achieved.' — Charlotte Adams, English Language Training teacher

See also