GELI (Grupo de Especialistas en Lengua Inglesa) was officially created in 1989 and its first convention was celebrated in 1991. GELI is part of the Association of Linguists of Cuba (ALC), which is a member of the Academy of Science of Cuba.
GELI is a professional, non-profit association whose purposes are to
- disseminate information
- strengthen instruction and research in the teaching of English
- provide opportunities and promote scholarships and training for Cuban teachers of English
GELI has more than 250 members involved in issues and concerns around English language teaching. They are teachers, teacher trainers, researchers, program administrators, and material/curriculum developers who are scattered throughout the country; all of them hold at least a bachelor of arts degree, and 68% hold a doctorate or a master's degree.
The vast majority of GELI members are from universities, especially medical and pedagogical institutions of higher education. Other teaching sectors represented in GELI/TESOL are high schools under the umbrella of the ministry of education, foreign language schools, and upgrading centers, which include the ministries of agriculture, construction, tourism, aviation, scientific institutions, and the like.
Expertise and Training
GELI, as a specialized group of ALC, has developed multiple activities in the effort to fulfill its mission: conventions, open house sessions, summer courses, seminars, forums, and symposiums. GELI also publishes newsletters and a journal, Approach.
GELI began offering summer courses in 2002 and, since then, has organized one almost every year in different provinces of the country. In these courses, the participants discuss theoretical and practical issues relevant to their professional development. The courses are taught by GELI member specialists and foreign experts. Those who have attended courses in other countries also teach GELI summer courses as a way to share the knowledge and expertise they have obtained.
GELI's journal, Approach
(ISSN 2074 0727), was published for the first time in December 2001. It is a yearly publication for all those involved in the field of teaching English as a foreign language in Cuba, Latin America, and the Caribbean.
Approach seeks to bridge the gap between the everyday practice concerns of professionals in English language teaching and related disciplines such as education, linguistics, psychology, and sociology. It also provides a forum for informed discussion of the principles and practices that determine how the English language is taught and learned in those countries. It also provides a forum for the exchange of information among members of the profession.