Riccardo Chiappini & Ethan Mansur

Mediating Texts, Concepts and Communication: Skills for Life

Mediation has become a buzzword in ELT since the release of the newest update to the CEFR, the Companion Volume, but it does not yet appear by name in most coursebooks. This workshop will lay out a process for creating mediation tasks and demonstrate how mediation can help develop and support key life skills.


The objectives of this workshop are:

  • To raise participants’ awareness of mediation as defined in the updated CEFR

  • To show how mediation can support and develop key life skills

  • To lay out a process for creating mediation tasks

  • To give participants the chance to create their own mediation tasks

Mediation does not yet appear by name in most coursebooks, but that is about to change. Major publishers and institutions are starting to take a keen interest in mediation, due to the strong focus placed on it in the new update to the CEFR, The Companion Volume (Council of Europe, 2020).

After clarifying the concept of mediation at the beginning of the workshop, we’ll invite participants to make links between key life skills (e.g. critical and creative thinking, decision-making and collaboration) and the three subcategories of mediation (Mediating a Text, Mediating Communication and Mediating concepts). Next, we will lay out a straightforward process for task creation, which we developed during our recent materials writing work related to mediation. We will also present a few sample tasks through which the links between key life skills and the CEFR descriptors will become clearer. In the last stage, participants will work in groups to create their own mediation tasks following the process outlined earlier. Each group will create a mediation task aimed at the development of a specific life skill. The workshop will end with a brief feedback session, in which participants will be invited to reflect on their activities.


Riccardo Chiappini and Ethan Mansur have both worked in ELT for more than 10 years. Together they have co-written materials for Oxford University Press and the Spanish Ministry of Education, including mediation activities and exam tasks for the new edition of the That’s English! coursebook series. They are currently co-authoring a resource book for teachers on mediation for Delta Publishing.