Opening the World To Central Asian Women

The purpose of the English Program is to increase the English capacity of Central Asian women leaders and future women leaders. By improving their English, the women leaders can more easily reach out to the international community for research, advice, funding, as well as share their experiences with the rest of the world. The English classes are long-distance, one-on-one lessons between the English teacher and student.

The English Program provides both the students and teachers with a unique opportunity to directly meet and learn about women from other cultures. The Alliance uses only experienced English teachers as volunteers in this program to ensure that students are getting the best possible education.

The Alliance is currently running the English Program in Afghanistan.

The Technology

The English Program uses Skype® (www.Skype.com) to provide two live English conversation classes per week for each student. Skype offers free computer-to-computer phone and “chat” features that allow students and teachers to speak with each other as well as write instant messages at the same time. The English classes have a one-to-one student-teacher pairing so that each student gets the optimal amount of practice and attention from her teacher. In between the two live classes, the teachers and students also use e-mail for written assignments.

The Classes

The live classes run from between 45 minutes to one hour per class, depending on the students’ needs and teachers’ availability. At the moment, we do not use one standard curriculum for the project, but instead each teacher tailors her classes for her specific student for an individualized three-month course. Each teacher is an experienced ESL/EFL professional who has been screened by the Alliance and we are confident in their skills to provide high-quality lessons to their students.

Student Requirements

In order to participate in the English Program, students must be affliated with and approved by one of the Alliance’s local partner organizations. The students must have access to a reliable computer and high-speed internet twice a week. Students also need a headset with a microphone. Students are required to have at least a beginning level of English as the classes are not suitable for complete beginners.

Volunteer Teacher Requirements

To apply to become an English Program Volunteer, please e-mail the English Program Volunteer Application as an attachment to Anne at anned@aiwr.org, after you have filled it out and saved your version.