Teacher Training for CLIL in Higher Education Through Blended Learning

  • María del Carmen Arau Ribeiro
  • Margarida Morgado
  • Marcelo Gaspar
  • Mónica Régio


This chapter describes the challenges in planning, preparation, implementation, and results of a blended learning course in teacher training for Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) in Higher Education from the point of view of the teacher trainers and teacher trainees involved in the process. The pilot study covers partial results of this b-learning course of 61+ hours, carried out in the 2nd semester of 2016–2017. The collaborating researchers are themselves English teachers – from a combination of areas – English literature, Linguistics, English teacher training, English as a foreign language, English for specific purposes, Terminology, and Translation studies – in the same higher education institutes (HEIs) where the teachers in training volunteered to participate in this innovative training course across Portugal. The opportunities and challenges afforded by this pilot experience, analyzed through careful data collection instruments, provide deeper understanding and interpretations of key issues when peer training shifts from face to face to a blended model, while they suggest innovative solutions for the design and management of similar training courses. The cohesion of the participants as a group and the challenges they encountered, the value of the work developed for their classes, the effectiveness of their experience and their satisfaction together contribute to a better understanding of just how the CLIL approach and accompanying classroom management styles can make a difference in the professional and academic quality of life of teachers who choose to expand their horizons. The main focus of the chapter will be on how trainees creatively assimilated the use of suggested online materials and resources as concrete practice they could integrate in their own classes.


  1. Abreu, R., Almeida, J. C., Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Coelho, T., & Ricardo Gonçalves, R. (2015). Aprender noutra Língua [Learning in another language]. Roundtable at the IPG Março das Línguas, Instituto Politécnico da Guarda, Guarda, Portugal.Google Scholar
  2. Allen, I. E., Seaman, J., Poulin, R., & Straut, T. T. (2016). Online report card: Tracking online education in the United States. Sloan Consortium, 1–4. Available at Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  3. Almeida, M. A. (2017). Content and language integrated learning in tourism vocational education and training in Portugal. Unpublished M.A. dissertation at the in tourism and communication from the Escola superior de Hotelaria e Turismo do Estoril (Estoril Higher Institute for Tourism and Hotel Studies).Google Scholar
  4. Anderson, L., & Krathwohl, D. A. (2001). Taxonomy for learning, teaching and assessing: A revision of bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives. New York: Longman.Google Scholar
  5. Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2014). without barriers. In M. C. Arau Ribeiro & I. Chumbo (Coord), Communication without borders – Selected papers from the international conference languages 2011: X meeting of Aprolínguas and II meeting of (pp. 167–170). Guarda: Instituto Politécnico da Guarda [online]. Available at Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  6. Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2015a) Apresentamos o Utilizador da LE: Considerações sobre o Perfil Psicopedagógico do Ensino em LE [Presenting the L2 user: Considerations on foreign language psychology and teaching]. Revista de Estudios e Investigación en Psicología y Educación: Lenguaje, Comunicación y sus Alteraciones, 9, 34–38 [online]. Available at Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  7. Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2015b). Crossing disciplines: Interdisciplinary practice in higher education. CASALC Review, 5(1) [online]. Index at Available at: Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  8. Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2015c). Some lessons learned: The CLIL project in higher education. e-TEALS – An e-journal of Teacher Education and Applied Language Studies, 6, 20–37. Available at Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Arau Ribeiro, M. C., & Morgado, M. M. (2015). A national teacher training project to promote CLIL in Portuguese higher education. Poster presented at the 5th Bremen symposium on language learning and teaching – Content & diversity: New challenges for language teaching and learning in higher education, University of Bremen, 20–21 February.Google Scholar
  10. Arau Ribeiro, M. C., & Silva, M. M. (forthcoming). Building and defending a space for language centers in higher education in Portugal: The story. Paper presented at the II Congresso Internacional de Línguas Estrangeira, Escola Superior de Educação de Bragança, 12–13 October.Google Scholar
  11. Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Silva, M. M., & Gonçalves A. (2014). Five years of Building a national network in higher education. Poster presented at the 2014 international conference on languages and the market: Competitiveness and employability, Escola Superior de Hotelaria e Tourismo de Estoril, Estoril, Portugal, 27–28 October [online]. Available at Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  12. Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Brito, E., & Rodrigues, F. (2015). Uma avaliação dos MOOC ao serviço do ensino e aprendizagem das Línguas Estrangeiras [An Assessment of MOOCs for Foreign Language Learning and Teaching]. In T. M. Estrela, C. Cavaco, M. J. Cardona, P. R. Pinto, B. Cabrito, F. A. Costa, J. Pinhal, J. Ferreira, P. Rodrigues, & P. Figueiredo (Eds.), Diversidade e Complexidade da Avaliação em Educação e Formação. Contributos da Investigação [Diversity and Complexity in Assessment for Education and Training: Research contributions] (Atas do XXII Colóquio da AFIRSE Portugal, pp. 1252–1262). Lisbon: EDUCA/AFIRSE Portugal.Google Scholar
  13. Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Silva, M. M., Morgado, M., & Coelho, M. (2016). Promoting dynamic CLIL courses in Portuguese higher education: From design and training to implementation. CASALC Review, 5(2) [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  14. Bárcena, E., Read, T., Marín-Monje, E., & Castrillo, M. D. (2015). Analysing student participation in foreign language MOOCs: A case study. In U. Cress & C. D. Kloos (Eds.), Proceedings of the European MOOC stakeholder summit 2014 (P.A.U. Education, S. L.) [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  15. Bass, R. (2012). Disrupting ourselves: The problem of learning in higher education [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  16. Bergman, J., & Sams, A. (2012). Flip your classroom: Reach every student in every class every day. n/l: ISTE – International Society for Technology in Education.Google Scholar
  17. Bloom, B. S., Engelhardt, M. D., Furst, E. J., Hill, W. H., & Krathwohl, D. R. (Eds.). (1956). Taxonomy of educational objectives: The classification of educational objectives, handbook 1: The cognitive domain. White Plains: Longman.Google Scholar
  18. Brown, M. G. (2016). Blended instructional practice: A review of the empirical literature on instructors’ adoption and use of online tools in face-to-face teaching. Internet and Higher Education, 31, 1–10 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Brown, P. C., Roediger, H. L., & McDaniel, M. A. (2014). Make it stick: The science of successful learning. Boston: Harvard University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Carloni, G. (2013). Content and language integrated learning: A blended model in higher education. The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, 9, 61–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Chang, V. (2015). Review and discussion: E-learning for academia and industry. International Journal of Information Management, 36(3), 476–485 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Coelho, M., & Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2018). Internationalization strategies in Portuguese higher education institutions – Time to move on and to move beyond. In A. Curado (Ed.), LSP in Multi-disciplinary contexts of teaching and research. Papers from the 16th international AELFE conference (EPiC series in language and linguistics. EasyChair, pp. 33–39) [online]. At Accessed 14 Feb 2018.
  23. Cook, V. (Ed.). (2002). Portraits of the L2 user. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.Google Scholar
  24. Dafouz-Milne, E., & Sánchez García, D. (2013). ‘Does everybody understand?’: Teacher questions across disciplines in English-mediated university lectures: An exploratory study. Language Value, 5, 129–151.Google Scholar
  25. da Silva, M. M., & Albuquerque, A. (2014). TERMINOCLIL: Terminology-based approach to CLIL. Paper presented at the CLAVIER14 workshop on LSP research, teaching and translation across languages and cultures, Università degli Studi di Milano, Milan, Italy.Google Scholar
  26. Downes, S. (2010). New technology supporting informal learning. Journal of Emerging Technologies in Web Intelligence, 2(1), 27–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Duţă, N., & Martínez-Rivera, O. (2015). Between theory and practice: The importance of ICT in higher education as a tool for collaborative learning. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 180(November 2014), 1466–1473 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Fiehn, J, & Fettes, T. (2008). Developing personal, learning and thinking skills (PLTS) through post-16 citizenship research report. Learning and Skills Improvement Service, Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency.Google Scholar
  29. Gikas, J., & Grant, M. M. (2013). Mobile computing devices in higher education: Student perspectives on learning with cellphones, smartphones & social media. Internet and Higher Education, 19, 18–26 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Guth, S., Helm, F., & O’Dowd, R. (2014). Telecollaborative foreign language networks in European universities: A report on current attitudes and practices. Bellaterra Journal of Teaching & Learning Language & Literature, 7(4), 1–14.Google Scholar
  31. Hao, Y. (2016). Exploring undergraduates’ perspectives and flipped learning readiness in their flipped classrooms. Computers in Human Behavior, 59, 82–92 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hao, Y., & Lee, K. S. (2016). Teaching in flipped classrooms: Exploring pre-service teachers’ concerns. Computers in Human Behavior, 57, 250–260 [online]. At Accessed30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Hermann, M., Pentek, T., & Otto, B. (2016). Design principles for industry 4.0 scenarios. Proceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, March, 3928–3937.Google Scholar
  34. ISTE – International Society for Technology in Education. (2008). Convene connect transform: 2007–2008 annual report [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  35. Jonassen, D. H. (2000). Computers as mindtools for schools: Engaging critical thinking. Columbus: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  36. Karaoğlu, O. (2009). The future of education: Is it web 2.0 or not? January 28 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  37. Keats, D., & Schmidt, J. P. (2007). The genesis and emergence of education 3.0 in higher education and its potential for Africa. First Monday, 12(3) [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  38. Lévy, P. (2013). My research in a nutshell. Pierre Lévy’s Blog [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  39. Lévy, P. (2017). The next platform. Pierre Lévy’s Blog. 6 October [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  40. Lewis, T., & O’Dowd, R. (2016). Foreword: The virtual internationalization turn in language study. In Online intercultural exchange: Policy, pedagogy, practice (pp. 3–20). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  41. Lindstrom, M. (2016). Small data: The tiny clues that uncover huge trends. New York: St. Martin’s Press.Google Scholar
  42. Little, D. G. (2001). European language portfolio: A guide for teachers and teacher trainers. Strasbourg, Council of Europe, 2001Book.Google Scholar
  43. Little, D. G. (2014). Learning, teaching, assessment: An exploration of their interdependence in the CEFR. Paper presented at the 5th international conference on teaching English as a foreign language assessment in ELT: Opportunities and challenges, FCSH, Lisbon new university, Portugal, 21–22 November.Google Scholar
  44. Little, D. G. (2016). Agency and voice: Towards a new synergy between university language teaching/learning and research. Paper presented at the XIV CercleS International Conference 2016 on enhancing learners’ creative and critical thinking: The role of university language centres, University of Calabria, Italy, 22–24 September.Google Scholar
  45. Lu, Y. (2017). Industry 4.0: A survey on technologies, applications and open research issues. Journal of Industrial Information Integration, 6, 1. Scholar
  46. Morgado, M., & Coelho, M. (2013). CLIL vs. English as the medium of instruction: The Portuguese higher education polytechnic context. Egitania Sciencia, 7(12), 123–145.Google Scholar
  47. Morgado, M., & Coelho, M. (2014). Learning different subjects by using other languages… or the other way round? The relevance of the CLIL approach. In M. C. Arau Ribeiro & I. Chumbo (coord), Communication without borders – Selected papers from the international conference languages 2011: X meeting of Aprolínguas and II meeting of (pp. 153–162). Guarda: Instituto Politécnico da Guarda.Google Scholar
  48. Morgado, M., & Coelho, M. (2015). CLIL: Practical approaches of higher education teachers. In M. C. Arau Ribeiro & L. Guerra, A. C. Gonçalves, M. M. Silva, A. A. Silva, O. Gonçalves & S. Llinás (Eds.), Proceedings of the international meeting on languages, applied linguistics, and translation – LALT 2012 (pp. 129–142). Évora: Universidade de Évora [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  49. Morgado, M. M., Coelho, M. M., Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Chumbo, I., & Cordeiro, M. J. (2013). CLIL in higher education polytechnic institutes in Portugal. Poster presented at the 3rd ICLHE (Integrating content and language in higher education) conference, Maastricht University, Maastricht, Netherlands, 11–13 April 2013.Google Scholar
  50. Morgado, M. M., Coelho, M. M., & Arau Ribeiro, M. C. (2015a). CLIL (Aprendizagem Integrada de Língua e Conteúdo) no Ensino. Paper presented at CNaPPES2015 (Congresso Nacional de Práticas Pedagógicas no Ensino Superior), Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, Portugal, 3 July.Google Scholar
  51. Morgado, M., Coelho, M. M., Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Albuquerque, A., Silva, M. M., Chorão, G., Cunha, S., Gonçalves, A., Carvalho, A. I., Régio, M., Faria, S., & Chumbo, I. (2015b). CLIL training guide: Creating a CLIL learning community in higher education. Santo Tirso: De Facto Editores and [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  52. Morgado, M. M., Coelho, M. M., Arau Ribeiro, M. C., Silva, M. M., & Gonçalves, A. (2016). CLIL no Ensino Superior Português: uma experiência pedagógica inovadora. In S. Gonçalves, P. Fonseca, and C. Malça. (coords.), Estratégias de Ensino e Sucesso Académico: Boas Práticas no Ensino Superior, Vol 2: Inovaçao no Ensino Superior (pp, 188–194). Coimbra: CINEP/IPC [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  53. Nuthall, G. (2007). The hidden lives of learners. Wellington: NZCER.Google Scholar
  54. Paivio, A. (1986). Mental representations: A dual coding approach. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  55. Pappano, L. (2012). The year of the MOOC. New York Times, 02.11 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  56. Perifanou, M. A. (2014). PLEs & MOOCs in language learning context: A challenging connection [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  57. Prensky, M. (2001a, October). Digital natives, digital immigrants. On the Horizon 9(5), 1–6 [online]. At,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part1.pdf. Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Prensky, M. (2001b, November). Digital natives, digital immigrants, part II: Do they really think differently? On the Horizon, 9(6), 1–6. December [online]. At,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part2.pdf. Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Prensky, M. (2005). Engage me or enrage me”: What today’s™ learners demand. Educause, 40(5), 60–65 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  60. Prinz, W. (1997). Perception and action planning. European Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 9(2), 129–154. Scholar
  61. Prinz, W. (2005). Experimental approaches to action. In J. Roessler & N. Eilan (Eds.), Agency and self-awareness (pp. 165–187). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  62. Régio, M., Gaspar, M., Farinha, L., & Morgado, M. (2017). Industry 4.0 and telecollaboration to promote cooperation networks: A pilot survey in the Portuguese region of Castelo Branco. International Journal of Mechatronics and Applied Mechanics, 1, 243–248 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  63. Ryan, E. M. (2014). Massive open online course helps English language learners improve writing skills [online]. At (US Department of state official blog). Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  64. Siemens, G. (2005). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning, 2(1), 3–10 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  65. Song, Y., & Kong, S. C. (2017). Affordances and constraints of BYOD (Bring your own device) for learning and teaching in higher education: Teachers’ perspectives. The Internet and Higher Education, 32, 39–46 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Sternberg, R. J. (2003). Cognitive theory (3rd ed.). Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth.Google Scholar
  67. Tapscott, D. (2008). Grown up digital. How the net generation is changing your world. McGraw-Hill Professional.Google Scholar
  68. Turner, V. ([1966] 1994). The forest of symbols: Aspects of Ndembu ritual (Chapter 3: The ritual process: Structure and anti-structure). Ithaca: Cornell University Press [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  69. Twyman, J. S. (2014). Envisioning education 3.0: The fusion of behavior analysis, learning science and technology. Mexican Journal of Behavior Analysis, 40(2), 20–38 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Viberg, O., & Grönlund, Å. (2013). Cross-cultural analysis of users’ attitudes toward the use of mobile devices in second and foreign language learning in higher education: A case from Sweden and China. Computers & Education, 69, 169–180 [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Wenger, E. (1998). Communities of practice: Learning, meaning, and identity. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Wenger, E., & Snyder, W. E. (2000). Communities of practice: The organizational frontier. Harvard Business Review [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.
  73. Wenger-Traynor, E., & Wenger-Traynor, B. (2015). Introduction to communities of practice: A brief overview of the concept and its uses [online]. At Accessed 30 Sept 2017.

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • María del Carmen Arau Ribeiro
    • 1
  • Margarida Morgado
    • 2
  • Marcelo Gaspar
    • 2
  • Mónica Régio
    • 2
  1. 1.Polytechnic Institute of GuardaGuardaPortugal
  2. 2.Polytechnic Institute of Castelo BrancoCastelo BrancoPortugal

Personalised recommendations