The Lasting Impact of Scott Thornbury on English Language Teaching

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As the CEO and founder of Britishey Training Centre, I, Shady Abuyusuf, am delighted to present this post in honour of the remarkable contributions made by Scott Thornbury to the field of English language teaching. I have had the immense pleasure of meeting Scott twice—in Egypt and Barcelona—and his influence on my professional journey cannot be overstated.

Scott Thornbury, a renowned language educator and ELT theoretician, transformed the way we approach language education. His impact on the ELT community is vast and unforgettable. Scott’s theories have shaped the English language teaching ecosystem, venturing beyond traditional methods and giving teachers the tools they need to develop truly innovative teaching approaches.

One of the most significant methodologies Scott contributed to is the Dogme approach, characterised by its focus on learner-centred teaching that adapts to the students’ needs and relies on their language skills. It encourages meaningful communication through authentic conversation, effectively teaching the language in an engaging and dynamic way.

My encounters with Scott changed the trajectory of my personal journey in the field of education. Our discussions invigorated me to experiment with the Dogme approach in my hometown of Damietta, a decision that ultimately altered my teaching style for the better. Eager to learn from Scott, I frequently corresponded with him, showing him videos of my ‘unplugged’ teaching style. Throughout our interactions, Scott’s expertise and insight fostered a deeper understanding of my craft.

Scott’s boundless support and belief in me granted me the confidence to continue pursuing excellence in my own teaching and the teaching of others. He went so far as to write me a couple of recommendation letters, and to this day, I am profoundly grateful for the opportunities his support has provided me.

Today, as the CEO and founder of Britishey Training Centre, I continue to draw upon the wisdom Scott granted me. His impact on the field of English language teaching is priceless, and his teachings continue to inspire our work at the centre. We stand committed to providing the highest quality education rooted in the principles Scott instilled, and we will always remember the transformative influence he has had on countless educators around the world.

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