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Wider Membership Scheme...

The Wider Membership Scheme (WMS) is IATEFL's scheme to extend membership around the world in collaboration with its network of Associates. At present approximately 10% of all international IATEFL members are supported by WMS.


Extending membership ­ WMS & Associates
IATEFL Young Learner SIG has recently agreed to provide Associate members and WMS members, who are interested in working with Young Learners (students from 3 to 17 years old), free access to their YLSIG website, which has a members only section, and our discussion list which has become members only recently.

To be eligible for this free access:

WMS members should contact the YLSIG membership officer Andy Jackson quoting full name, IATEFL membership number and briefly describing how they are involved with Young learners. A password will be sent and free access given as long as IATEFL membership is paid and up to date.

Individual members of National associations who are IATEFL Associates should request that their local association sends the following information to the YLSIG membership officer, Andy Jackson.

  1. IATEFL Associate membership number
  2. Requesting member's full name
  3. Written acknowledgment that the requesting member is a paid up member of
    the associate association.

Associate members have one year's free access, after which they must once again send the above information to our membership officer.


  • How does WMS work?

Members of all IATEFL Associates can already be "basic" IATEFL members for much less than the normal full subscription. Under WMS, Associates in countries whose economic circumstances qualify them for the scheme are able to offer this basic membership at even lower rates matched to the local cost of living.

This is made possible by an IATEFL fund built up over the years from donations by members, associate organisations and other benefactors. An important feature of the scheme is that it also enables Associates in richer countries to support colleagues in less wealthy countries by contributing to the fund.

The scheme is overseen by an independent advisory committee which considers applications for support from Associates and recommends to IATEFL how the available funds should be allocated.

  • How can our members be international IATEFL members under this scheme?

You will need to agree with IATEFL a local subscription rate for a certain (maximum) number of memberships. Once this is settled your members pay this subscription to you and you send their details to IATEFL for their membership to begin. Later you transfer the total amount of these subscriptions to IATEFL.

  • Is this a "different" form of membership?

No, it's the same as any other basic membership of IATEFL. Once each individual's details are received all communication is between them and IATEFL, not via the Associate.

  • How long does it last?

Membership under WMS lasts for a year from when members' details are received by IATEFL and it can be renewed for a further year at the same subscription. After this you need to bid again for more WMS support.

  • How do we apply?

By submitting a bid to the advisory committee with estimates of how many of your members will take up IATEFL membership and at what price. There are clear guidelines for this process. Please contact Glenda Smart - [email protected].

  • How often does this happen?

IATEFL contacts all Associates in December of each year, inviting them either to submit WMS bids or to support the scheme with contributions. However, once you have agreed a local subscription it holds good for two years so in practice you only need to bid every two years.

  • How do we send the money to IATEFL?

There are several ways to do this. It may be brought by people coming to the annual conference in the UK ; it may be paid by an individual member's credit card; In any case there is no need for the money to be sent immediately.

  • How does the Committee decide which associations to recommend for support?

The Advisory Committee bases its recommendations on economic data taken from United Nations sources, from representatives of impartial organisations working in the relevant countries and from information supplied by Associates themselves. Some aspects of these data are, of course, subject to interpretation; each case is judged on its individual merits by the Advisory Committee and this is why the independence of the committee is so important.


More detailed questions and answers

Here are some more detailed questions and answers

  • How do we know if our Association qualifies for WMS? Do we have to find this out in advance?

The information sent out each year by IATEFL includes a table based on United Nations statistics which gives an indication of which countries are likely to qualify. In the last two bidding rounds offers of WMS support were made to Associates in the following countries: Belarus, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, India, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of Macedonia, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Russia and Turkey.

  • How long is membership for?

Individual membership is for ONE year. When it's time to renew IATEFL contacts all members directly.

The WMS agreement lasts for TWO years. This means that when it's time for members to renew, they pay the same in the second year as in the first. After the second year you must submit another WMS bid. Without this they will have to renew at the normal basic membership rate.

  • How do I work out what my teachers can afford to pay?

The bidding guidelines give suggestions for this but the answer is probably a question - how do you work out what they can pay for your local membership subscription?

  • How many memberships am I 'allowed' to bid for? Does it depend on the size of our Assocation? Is there a set limit or recommended proportion?

No, there's no set proportion: some Associates are so large that WMS could not possibly support more than a fraction of their members. However, if the number is too small then the WMS committee may take the view that it isn't really important to you and isn't doing anything to promote IATEFL's international goals.

  • What happens to the application if all the required information has not been provided?

If only a few details are missing, your bid will probably be considered and you'll be asked to provide these before a formal offer is confirmed. If a lot of information is missing it will either be sent back to you (if there's time) or rejected.

  • What's the best and cheapest way of getting members' fees to IATEFL?

Often the easiest way is for it to be brought in cash (sterling) when someone visits the UK. But as long as you get the money to IATEFL within the same financial year, we'll be patient and helpful...

  • What happens at the end of one year? How is the membership renewed? Through IATEFL or through the Associate?

IATEFL contacts each member individually inviting them to renew. The first renewal is at the same agreed local rate. After that, unless you've agreed a new local rate, renewal will be at the standard "basic" rate.

  • What happens if the application is late, through reasons beyond one's control?

It depends how late and it depends on the reasons. The normal deadline is Associates' day, the day before the annual IATEFL conference and this allows a few days' "slippage" during the conference. After that it's unlikely your bid will be considered.

  • Can an Associate apply every year for a two-year period, or must we wait till then end of a two year period? i.e can we apply in 2003 for e.g. 50 places for the years 2004-6 , and again in 2004 for 50 places in 2005-7, offering the places to different associate members each time?

Yes, theoretically you can but the WMS committee may give priority to other bids in the second year.

IATEFL - Darwin College, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 70NY, UK

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