Fulbright English Teacher Grant
21.08.18
Fulbright English Teacher Grant

 

 

Fulbright English Teacher Grant

 

Anastasia Zhdanova, lecturer Global Ambassador, became a member of the Fulbright Program for English Teachers. This year she will spend at the University of Notre Dame (Indiana, USA), where she will take several courses for teachers, teach Russian to American students and study American culture. Watch the video or read the text about the admission process to the program. 

 

What is FLTA and what are the requirements? 

I had a desire to participate in this program a long time ago, after I graduated from the master's program and continued to teach English. I realized that I would like to learn more about the culture of the country whose language I teach and improve my teaching skills. I wanted to gain indispensable experience, get to know American culture more closely and become such a cultural mediator between the two countries.

FLTA is a Fulbright program for young English teachers. The essence of the program is that a young English teacher goes to the United States and teaches Russian language and culture there. Also, the participant has the opportunity to take two subjects per semester in order to become more familiar with the structure of an American university or college.

To become a member of FLTS, you must work as an English teacher or study in the last year of the university with a degree in Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Also, you must have a good command of English, you must have the ability to work in a team and individually, an interest in your own culture and a desire to communicate with a huge number of people.

First stage of the competition

The first stage, in my opinion, is the most difficult. You submit an online application in which you provide basic information about yourself, but here you meet several obstacles: 

First, you need to find three people who will write you recommendations. Here I would advise you to be very careful in choosing your recommenders, as this will greatly affect the decision on your application. I had two referrals from my employers and one referral from a university teacher. 

Secondly, you need to write a motivation letter and clearly state why you need this program and why you should be selected. One of the most important papers is writing an essay about how you will teach your culture to Americans. Here you can choose any event, any format - everything is up to you and depends on your creativity. You also need to write an essay in which you will talk about how you would conduct a Russian language lesson, what would you focus on, what innovative approaches and methods would you use in conducting this lesson.

Second stage of the competition

The second step is no less important. This is a personal interview and delivery TOEFL exam. Also at this stage, you need to provide additional documents, such as certified copies of diplomas. Here I encountered certain difficulties, since I received my diploma in St. Petersburg. Therefore, you need to worry in advance about how you will receive the necessary documents on time. 

Also, by the second round, you must provide confirmation that you work as a teacher and fill out a form called the Language of nomination report. In this form, the university teacher must confirm that you can actually teach Russian. It was quite difficult for me to sign this form, since I did not personally know the teachers of Russian as a foreign language. Colleagues and acquaintances can come to the rescue here - everyone who can give some contacts. I was lucky - one of our colleagues provided me with the contacts of a teacher of Russian as a foreign language from UrFU. I had to come, attend the lesson and try myself as a teacher of the Russian language. It was an interesting experience: I actually saw what it is and what I have to face in the United States.

Interview

This is the second time I applied for participation in Fulbright - the first time I did not pass at the interview stage. After analyzing, I realized that I could not clearly explain my goals, what my motivation is and why I need this program. Therefore, my main advice is a clear understanding of the goals. Indeed, it seems that the program is interesting, but this is not enough, you must understand how the program can contribute to your future career growth and professional development, and convey to the commission how you can apply the experience gained in the USA upon returning to Russia.

TOEFL

As part of the program, you must pass the TOEFL exam. The points obtained influence the choice of universities - the higher the score, the greater the choice of universities. In order to pass the exam for a high score, you need to carefully prepare. I passed the test with 106 points, and in this case, the experience of teaching preparation courses helped me a lot. You can prepare for TOEFL preparation courses for a high level of the language or take a couple of introductory lessons with a teacher. Moreover, preparing for the exam will allow you to assess and improve the academic skills that you will need to apply in the process of studying in the United States.

Deadlines

When applying for a Fulbright, you need to be patient, because the whole process takes about a year. First, you apply before June, after a few months you are notified that you have passed to the second round, and you need to provide documents for the second round, the second round usually takes place in October or November in Moscow (personal interview and exam), then are you waiting announcements of the semi-finalists a few more months (before the end of the year), if you are declared a semi-finalist, you are already almost at the finish line - you just need to select the desired universities that you meet the requirements for and make sure that your candidacy is approved by the Council for International Education, then you will have a series of bureaucratic The medical forms and getting the visa take a long time too, so patience is very important. See the exact dates of the new recruitment on the program website

Wish you luck. If you have a goal, go for it, and everything will definitely work out!

 

Anastasia Zhdanova

teacher Global Ambassador

participant of FLTA 2018, University of Notre Dame

   
  ← Learn more about preparing for the TOEFL Other grants and scholarships →  
 

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