There is a universal consensus that English language is a means of international communication. However, there seems to be less agreement on whether the language used for international communications should be based on one of the defined standard native varieties, or an independent “lingua franca”, which, although rooted in native varieties, has undergone a transformation through modification by its nonnative users. This study explores prospective English teachers’ awareness of, and attitudes towards ELF accents in a Turkish context. Descriptive analysis of questionnaire data revealed that prospective English teachers in the Turkish context are generally unaware of ELF accents, perceiving Standard British English as the accepted norm in English language teaching, and show favorable attitudes toward native and near-native accents. The results seem to suggest that ELF attitudes of prospective English teachers are associated with imagined communities, rather than actual experience of language use.
Cross-cultural understanding is required for all ELT professionals to teach English as a global language. The current research explores ways to enhance mutual understanding, particularly focusing on Korean and non-Korean ELT professionals, as major agents to ensure educational quality. A qualitative method is adopted, and reflective practice in a written format is chosen as a way of collecting data. Hundreds of critical incidents regarding cultural clashes were collected from both Korean and non-Korean teachers/administrators to find out what common issues and themes appeared in their classroom/workplace settings. Finally, 70 entries were selected to meet the established criteria: substantial context and quality of lesson. According to an analysis from the perspectives of two authors (Korean & non-Korean), a majority of cultural clashes involved a few key categories such as: 1) hierarchical demands related to age and gender; 2) power of the boss/supervisor over staff; and 3) need for flexibility and clear communication on all levels and from all stakeholders. Five example cases were used to visualize the sense-making process that ELT professionals could find most enlightening. The research findings will ideally help enhance mutual understanding between Korean and non-Korean teachers/leaders to improve educational quality in general in the Korean ELT context.
English language learners (ELLs) are the fastest-growing student population in PreK-12 U.S. schools. As the number of ELLs increase in mainstream classrooms, not only English as a second language (ESL) teachers, but all teachers, need to be knowledgeable in second language acquisition and development while embracing culturally relevant pedagogies to meet the needs of ELLs. Based on years of experience as TESOL teacher educators, as well as our review of existing research studies, we have identified initial assumptions mainstream pre- and in-service teachers hold about ELLs. Some of the assumptions are: (1) Parents of ELLs do not care about their children’s academic success, (2) I cannot speak my ELLs’ language therefore I cannot teach them, (3) ELLs’ use of first language (L1) inside and outside the classroom impedes English acquisition, (4) It is not fair to native English-speaking (NES) students to modify assessments for ELLs, and (5) ELLs’ names are difficult to pronounce, so assigning an English name is acceptable. In this paper, we discuss these assumptions and outline recommendations based on what we believe all teachers need to consider in order to work effectively with ELLs and their parents.
The 5th Untested Ideas International Research Conference Collaborating for Change in Research and Practice June 23 – 25, 2017 You are invited to submit your manuscripts, work in progress, and abstracts for presentation at the 5th Untested Ideas (UI) International Research Conference (E-conference) to be held online on June 23-25, 2017. “Collaborating for Change in Research and Practice” is the theme of this e-conference. This conference provides the social sciences researchers worldwide with opportunities for presenting research studies/proposals online, interacting with professionals online, and publishing research studies/articles in UI journals and books. All completed manuscripts submitted to this e-conference will be peer-reviewed for publications in UI journals and books.