Last week Sophie attended MaWSIG’s (IATEFL’s Materials Writing Special Interest Group) first meet-up. And as she’s part of the organising committee we thought it would be a good chance to find out more about the event and how it went.

What is MaWSIG?

The International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Langauge has special interest groups that arrange events, opportunities and generally support people involved in the English Teaching profession. The Materials that are created to help facilitate the learning of English is a huge part of this and so two years ago a group of IATEFL’ers decided to form a special interest group to support those who are part of the materials writing process. And so MaWSIG was born.

What and why meetups?

The meetups are for a number of reasons. We held our first event back in January and we realised that a lot of the people who were attending found the casual networking parts of the day were as useful and interesting as the more formal parts. So as part of our events planning for 2014-15 we decided to host small scale events (meetups) with the sole purpose of networking. To add extra value for your MaWSIG membership we decided to make them members only and invite guest speakers to do a short talk on something that we think MaWSIG members will find useful.

We partnered with BookMachine for this first meetup as we were able to promote the event with them as well as use their eventbrite account to arrange the tickets and details. The plan is to be able to roll the format out across the MaWSIG membership network so that we can get a wider spread of events across the world.

How did the first meetup go?

The first meetup last week was fantastic! We invited commissioning editors and senior publishing professionals as well and asked MaWSIG members who they wanted to meet. When people arrived on the door we helped to introduce people to useful connections – a lot of business was done that evening as well as everyone meeting new and old faces alike!

We also had a fantastic talk from Nick Tims on the benefits of joining the Society of Authors. As well as a special discount for MaWSIG members!

When is the next meetup?

We haven’t yet organised the next meetup, but watch this space as I’m sure there will be one soon. In the mean time we’ve got some brilliant events lined up as well as a lot more webinars up our sleeves!

Online Materials Writing Festival – Sunday 14th December 1-6pm

IATEFL PCE The Material Writer’s Essential Toolkit – Friday 10th April

MaWSIG May – a series of webinars throughout May 2015