Education students gain experience in Korea

Published 30 November 2010

daejeonSeven students from the School of Education at the University of New England are spending eight weeks teaching English at schools in the South Korean city of Daejeon.

UNE’s Korea Internship Program, funded by the Daejeon Metropolitan Office of Education, is now in its second year. The UNE students are paired with Korean teachers of English in primary and secondary schools, where  their main tasks are making lesson plans, developing teaching resources, teaching English in classes, and presenting their English pedagogical approaches in demonstration classes open to the public.

This year the UNE students are allocated to seven different schools (three secondary and four primary) from the 18th of October to the 10th of December. They stay in Korean family homes, and receive $100 a week for their expenses.

“The Korean Internship program provides a wonderful opportunity for UNE students to experience Korea and to develop their pedagogical skills while being paid for most of their expenses,” said UNE lecturer in Education Dr Myung-sook Auh, “It also provides an opportunity for them to inform Korean teachers, students and families about Australia. For example, they are teaching Australian folktales and folksongs to Korean students.”

Supervisor Hwang In-sung in the Daejeon Metropolitan Office of Education is in charge of the Korea Internship program, and Dr Auh and Dr Chris Reading (also from School of Education) coordinate the program at UNE.

“South Korea is ranked at the top in international scholastic tests, such as PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) and TIMSS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study),” Dr Auh said. “Thus it is an eye-opening experiences for UNE students to observe Korean students’ school life – their discipline in classrooms and their parents’ enthusiasm for education.

The UNE education students – a mixture of postgraduates and undergraduates – are Timothy Boyle, Amy Taylor, Amy Keir, Amie Jacobs, Chloe Pillar, Jessie Geaney, and Kerry Newton. “The Korea Internship program is recognised as school practicum by the NSW Department of Education and Training,” Dr Auh said, “and four of the students are doing the internship as their practicum unit.”

The Korea Internship program is also supported by Asiana Airlines and Australian Educational International (AEI) in the Australian Embassy in Seoul, South Korea.  Mr Dean Woodgate, Education Counsellor in the AEI, is scheduled to visit Daejeon to attend UNE students’ demonstration classes on the 8th of December.

For more information about the Korea Internship program contact Dr Myung-sook Auh on (02) 6773 2917 (e-mail: mauh@une.edu.au).

The Daejeon Metropolitan Office of Education logo (“Everybody enjoys education”) displayed here expands into a photograph taken at the welcome ceremony for the UNE Internship teachers and their Korean advising teachers on the 18 th of November. At the centre of the front row is the Chief of the School Education Division, Lee Sang Soo. On his left in the photograph is UNE’s Dr Myung-sook Auh, and on his right the Executive Supervisor of the School Education Division, Bae Hong-sik. Standing at the right of the photograph is Supervisor Hwang In-sung, Supervisor of English Education Affairs and Coordinator of the Daejeon Internship program.