Speaking Events


Presentations and Workshops

For 30 years, Randall has spoken to teachers around the world on a broad landscape of topics including educational technology, language assessment, various instructional methodologies, human connection and authenticity, and the grief experienced with loss and death. Contact Randall if you are interested in having him speaking at your institution or event in 2021-2022.

Here are some of his presentations:

October 2021: ORTESOL 2021 Virtual Fall Conference: Navigating the New Reality Both Inside and Outside the Classroom

Title: Surviving and Thriving in the New Pandemic Era

Web Site: https://ortesol.wildapricot.org/

Plenary Summary:

By the end of 2019, the word, COVID-19, still hadn’t entered our daily vocabulary, and its tsunami-like impact was only on the distant horizon for most of the world, having not permeated into every aspect of our lives. However, since then, life on this planet has been radically altered, and countless millions—billions—of people have been affected—physically, socially, economically, and emotionally. Furthermore, teachers, students, families, and educational systems have been turned upside down as they have learned to adapt to the challenges in learning and growing in this new normal.

With vulnerability and raw candor, Randall shares how the pandemic has changed his personal and professional life and provides six keys to experiencing innovation and growth into the future.

June 2021: Third International Conference of Foreign Languages, Monterrey, Mexico

Title: How Online Learning Can Retool Minds and Reshape Hearts 

Download HandoutPDF

Web Site: http://www.cilex.mx

Keynote Summary:

Information in all arenas of thought—politics, education, religion, government, science, and the environment—possesses vast power to either enlighten and engender a more compassionate humanity, or it can wield the sword of injustice, prejudice, intolerance, and even violence. As human beings, we do not draw conclusions in a vacuum; rather, our attitudes and perspectives are shaped by the information that we read, see, and hear. In turn, these attitudes influence our actions, and our negative perceptions and treatment of others can rob people of their human dignity and self-worth. In fact, xenophobia can be one unfortunate and painful result when our ideas and actions marginalize some of the most vulnerable groups on the fringes of society.

With this in mind, educators—along with family, friends, mentors, and other leaders—have a far-reaching responsibility to empower students with the ability to sift through an overwhelming flood of unfiltered ideas on the Internet that influence opinion and policy. Without such constructive guidance, it can be difficult for students to examine information with the tools of critical thinking that would lead to responsible action in the public arena. 

In this presentation, Randall addresses these concerns and provides suggestions on how teachers on the front lines can help their students develop strategies to analyze online information, leading to a more gracious attitude toward our local communities and global neighbors.

TESOL 2021 International Convention & Language Expo, March 24-27, 2021

Title: Gamifying the Classroom for Language Assessment Needs The presenters demonstrate three engaging games and simulation activities that teachers can use to maximize language learning or cross-cultural understanding in their face-to-face or online classrooms. This is supported with a basic model on how to integrate them into the content of any classroom.

Presenters: Randall Davis, Rus Wilson, and Riadh Koubaa

Title: The Nuts and Bolts of Teaching Effective Listening Strategies

How do students become better active listeners? This session reviews factors that make listening difficult for language learners and demonstrates interactive and realistic activities for both high- and low-resource environments that teach, not just test, effective listening skills. Ideas for both face-to-face and online classes are addressed.

Presenters: Randall Davis (United States), Mouna Bouhlel (Tunisia), Pragya Adhikari (Nepal), and Keilor Vargas (Costa Rica)

Bolivia English Teachers’ Association – 25th International Virtual Convention for English Teachers, January 6-9, 2021.

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/BETABoliviaTesolIatefl

Web Site: https://www.betabolivia.org/

Plenary Title: Reimagining the Traditional Paradigm of Professional Development 

Download Handout: HERE


Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, many teachers around the world have felt disconnected, unprepared, and upended in their work because this global situation has fractured many of the traditional ways of teaching and learning. As a result, teachers have struggled to find a future place for themselves in a profession with limited opportunities to engage in meaningful professional development in a remote environment. That said, great creativity and innovation can blossom amid disruption and chaos. In response to this great educational upheaval, Randall explains how old ways of doing professional development must give way to new paradigms of support for our profession to not only survive, but thrive in today’s world. To this end, Randall proposes three fundamental changes to his work that reflect this new vision for the future.

Best Practices Session: New Twists, Tricks, and Tools to Enhance Your Online Lessons

Download Handout: HERE


With online learning becoming the backbone of instruction around the world, teachers are trying to come up with new ways of enhancing their teaching and the learning experience. Unfortunately, teachers often have very little training on how to maximize the potential of online instruction and feel lost on how to navigate these uncharted waters. In response to this, Randall introduces a potpourri of tools, tips, and secrets on (1) running an engaging online class through popular Web-conferencing platforms, (2) choosing microphones, green screens, and Webcams to create quality classroom content, and (3) creating meaningful language assessment strategies to access students’ skills.  

Facebook Live Tampico MEXTESOL – Professional Development Event, August 7, 2020

Title: Building Human Connection and Collaboration Through Online Communities

Broadcast Video (My part starts at around 2:06): View Video


TESOL 2020 Virtual Convention & English Language Expo, July 16–18, 2020

Title: Flipgrid.com + Smart Phones = Effective Speaking Assessment

Web Site: https://www.tesol.org/conventiononline2020/schedule-at-a-glance/prerecorded-sessions

Keynote Address: International Language Fair 2019, Guadalajara, Mexico

Title: When Being Wrong Leads to More Empathy and Better Teaching 

Randall’s Article: PDF | HTML


Keynote Address: ThaiTESOL 2018, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Title: Embracing and Celebrating Imperfection on the Road to Better Teaching

Presentation: TESOL 2017, Seattle, Washington, USA

Title: Maximizing technology in high- and low-resource environments

Keynote Address: MexTESOL 2016, Monterrey, Mexico

Title: Finding New Pathways in a Dynamically-Changing Profession

He has given such lectures and workshops in the US, Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Peru, Thailand, and Saudi Arabia, and you are welcome to e-mail Randall if you are interested in such a presentation.

Here are more titles of presentations that he has given as an invited or plenary speaker:

  • Searching the Internet with a Backhoe, not a Toothpick. TESOL. New York City, New York.
  • Creating Listening Activities That Work. TEFL Conference for School Teachers. Trujillo, Peru.
  • Fostering Cross-cultural Understanding via Simulations. Korea TESOL Conference: Technology in Education. Kyong-ju, Korea.
  • Friend or Foe: Technology in the Language Classroom. National Autonomous University of Mexico. Mexico City, Mexico.
  • Ten Keys to Effective Speaking Assessment. TESOL. Daring to Lead, Tampa, Florida.
  • Appraising Language Skills Development Through Alternative Assessment. Jeddah and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Here are some of the other themes of his teacher training:

  • demonstrating innovative activities for teaching all language skills, with special emphasis on listening, speaking, pronunciation, grammar
  • developing assessment tools, including classroom achievement and program placement tests
  • using video (commercial messages, movies, sitcoms, and student productions) to improving listening, speaking, and oral grammar skills
  • using technology, specifically digital voice recorders and MP3 players, to assessing students’ speaking skills
  • teaching students to develop cross-cultural awareness through engaging simulation activities and games
  • developing ESL/EFL Web sites for self-access learning
  • explaining the importance of soft skills (e.g., self-reflection, empathy, leadership, listening, and compassion) in language instruction
  • teaching effective techniques for searching and researching information on the Internet for academic purposes
  • creating audio and video language-learning content for the Internet
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