SITUATED KNOWLEDGE OF LANGUAGE TEACHING IN AN EFL CONTEXT

Seyyed Ali Ostovar-Namaghi

Abstract


Theory-first approaches to language teaching research assume that teaching is directed by factors internal to the teachers, i.e., teacher cognition since they weed out contextual constraints as irrelevant. As a result, practitioners enter the profession with little or no knowledge of the culturally valued modes of thought and action. To uncover contextual constraints or context-sensitive parameters, this study collected and analysed interview data through grounded theory procedures. The results show that rather than being directed by generally accepted principles of language teaching, teachers' action is directed by teachers' awareness of parameters, "a set of culturally permissible, though theoretically unjustified acts specified through local exams and teacher evaluation and promotion schemes". To improve practice, teacher education programs should not only develop teachers' conceptual knowledge but also equip them with a critical awareness of contextual constraints, i.e., the parameters of teaching which account for the situated nature of teaching knowledge.   

 

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Keywords


conceptual constraints; contextual constraints; teachers' action; grounded theory; deskilling

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