ERG SES H 08, Education and Teachers' Practice
This study aims to identify the practices of ELT high school teachers in İzmir to foster learner autonomy during their classes and to examine whether their practices show significant differences with respect to certain background variables such as gender, experience, and field of certification.
The study aims to answer the following research questions:
1. How do ELT high school teachers foster learner autonomy in their classes?
1a. Which practices do ELT high school teachers use to foster learner autonomy?
1b. Do male and female teachers differ in their practices while fostering autonomy?
1c. Is there a significant difference among ELT high school teachers' practices to foster learner autonomy with respect to the years of experience?
1d. Is there a significant difference among ELT high school teachers' practices to foster learner autonomy with respect to their field of certification?
2. What are ELT high school teachers’ strengths with regard to fostering learner autonomy through ELT curriculum in their classes?
3. What are ELT high school teachers’ needs with regard to fostering learner autonomy through ELT curriculum in their classes?
4. What are ELT high school teachers’ suggestions with regard to fostering learner autonomy through ELT curriculum in their classes?
Gardner (2010) signified that there are more bilinguals in the world than monolinguals, and in more populated countries like China, India, and Nigeria, bilingualism is more of a requirement rather than an exception. English language teaching has definitely become one of the most demanding and crucial issues in many societies with technological and scientific developments, with improvements in international relations, in commercial accomplishments, and in transportation. These developmental changes have elicited a desire to learn about other cultures and nations, and with the concept of globalization, the importance of acquiring foreign languages (especially English) has been recognized by millions (Richards, 2006). Turkey is one of those places where educational issues have begun to attract great attention by people and the circumstances require students’ acquisition of foreign languages autonomously.
There is a growing focus in the literature on the concept of autonomy in English language teaching (ELT), together with its obvious and hidden effects on the teaching process (Barfield & Brown, 2007; Broady & Kenning, 1996; Cotterall & Crabbe, 1999; Little, Ridley, & Ushioda, 2003). The promotion of students' autonomy through helping students to identify their own goals and to make use of effective strategies to achieve these goals, and create consciousness of social contexts, has proved to have a strong competence as an alternative approach to language learning (Inomata, 2008). Whether the students and the teachers are aware of the importance of the concept and of the possible ways to enhance language learning autonomy in the classroom context are some other points that the recent research addresses.
In Turkey, the Ministry of National Educationbelieves the importance of autonomy and investigation of the learner autonomy concept through the practices for fostering learner autonomy by ELT high school teachers is expected to be significant. When the methodological perspective in Turkey is taken into consideration, the National English Teaching Curriculum goes hand in hand with the global language education policies of the world, especially Europe, and intends to meet them on the common ground with the social circumstances. MONE(2013) describes the core of the program as:
In designing the new English language teaching program, the principles and descriptors of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment (CEFR) were closely followed.The CEFR particularly stresses the need for students to put their learning into real-life practice in order tosupport fluency, proficiency and language retention (CoE, 2001); accordingly, the new curricular model emphasizeslanguage use in an authentic communicative environment.
Barfield, A., & Brown, S. H. (Eds.) (2007). Reconstructing autonomy in language education. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. Benson, P. (2001). Teaching and researching autonomy in language learning. Harlow, England: Longman. Broady, E., & Kenning, M. (Eds.) (1996). Promoting learner autonomy in university language teaching. London, England: Association for French Language Studies. Camilleri, G. (1999). Learner autonomy: The teachers’ views. Retrieved from http://archive.ecml.at/documents/pubCamilleriG_E.pdf Cotterall, S., & Crabbe, D. (Eds.) (1999). Learner autonomy in language learning: Defining the field and effecting change. Frankfurt a. M., Germany: Peter Lang. Dörnyei, Z. (1998). Demotivation in foreign language learning (Paper presented at the TESOL '98 Congress). Seattle, WA, March. Evrekli, E., Şaşmaz Ören, F., & İnel, D. (2010). Pre-Service primary teachers’ self-efficacy toward the constructivist approach and their opinions about their efficacy levels. Greece, Athens: 12th Annual International Conference on Education (24-27 Mayıs). Retrieved from https://www.academia.edu/ Documents/ in/Learner_Autonomy?page=2 Gardner, R., C. (2010). Motivation and second language acquisition: The socio-educational model. Vol.10. New York: Peter Lang. Little, D. (2007). Language learning autonomy: Some fundamental considerations revisited. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 1 (1), 14-29. Little, D., Ridley, J., & Ushioda, E. (Eds.) (2003). Learner autonomy in the foreign language classroom: Teacher, learner, curriculum and assessment. Dublin, Ireland: Authentik. Nakata, Y. (2011). Teachers’ readiness for promoting learner autonomy: A study of Japanese EFL high school teachers. Teaching and Teacher Education, 27 (2011)900-910. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com/ science/article/pii/ S07420 51X1100028X Richards, J.C. (2006). Communicative language teaching today. New York: Cambridge University Press. Yahong, L. (2009). How can I help my students promote learner-Autonomy in English language learning?. Educational Journal of Living Theories, 2(3), 365-398.
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