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 4. An Introduction to Task-based Teaching


Course Description

Welcome to the Cengage Learning ELT Advantage course An Introduction to Task-based Teaching by Dr. David Nunan. 

This course will introduce you to an important approach to language teaching. It will look at task-based language teaching in a broad way. You will study what task-based teaching is, how it developed and how it fits into a broader curriculum framework. Most importantly, this course will focus on how task-based language teaching works in the classroom.

This course is meant to be practical. It will provide many examples of task-based language teaching in activities and from textbooks. At the end of this course, you will have learned how to implement task-based solution in your own classroom. 

Also, students who successfully complete this course will receive a TESOL Certificate of Completion.

Instructor: David Nunan

Dr. David Nunan is the Dean of the Graduate School of Education at Anaheim University. Prior to this appointment, he was Chair Professor of Applied Linguistics and Director of the English Centre at the University of Hong Kong and formerly the Director of Research and Development and Coordinator of Postgraduate Programs in Linguistics at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.

David has also been recently appointed to the position of President, International Academics, a body appointed by the Ministry of Education in Beijing, China to develop and implement standards for English teachers. 

David is an accomplished author of over 100 books and articles in the areas of curriculum and materials development, classroom-based research and discourse analysis. He is also a textbook author whose projects have included Atlas, Go for it!, Listen In, Speak Out and Expressions, all published by Heinle Cengage Learning. David loves to travel and spends a great deal of time traveling around the world giving presentations to teachers.


Internet access, e-mail, the Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox Web browser, and the Adobe Flash and PDF plug-ins (two free and simple downloads you obtain at by clicking Get Adobe Flash Player and Get Adobe Reader).


A new section of each course starts monthly. If enrolling in a series of two or more courses, please be sure to space the start date for each course at least two months apart.

All courses run for six weeks, with a two-week grace period at the end. Two lessons are released each week for the six-week duration of the course. You do not have to be present when lessons are released. You will have access to all lessons until the course ends. However, the interactive discussion area that accompanies each lesson will automatically close two weeks after the lesson is released. As such, we strongly recommend that you complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.

The final exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the final exam has been released, you will have two weeks to complete all of your course work, including the final exam.     


Week 1

Wednesday – Lesson 01
Introduction and Approaches to Language Curriculum

Friday – Lesson 02
Defining Task-Based Language Teaching

Week 2

Wednesday – Lesson 03
Principles for Task-Based Language Teaching

Friday – Lesson 04
A Framework for Task-Based Language Teaching

Week 3 

Wednesday – Lesson 05
Task Components

Friday – Lesson 06
Task Types

Week 4

Wednesday – Lesson 07
The Research Basis for Task-Based Language Teaching

Friday – Lesson 08
Grading and Sequencing Tasks

Week 5

Wednesday – Lesson 09
Learning Styles and Strategies

Friday – Lesson 10
The Place of Grammar Within Task-Based Language Teaching

Week 6

Wednesday – Lesson 11
Assessing Students in Task-Based Language Teaching

Friday – Lesson 12
Evaluating Tasks

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