ERIC Number: ED324965
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990
Reference Count: N/A
The Theoretical Orientations of English as a Second Language Teachers: The Relationship between Beliefs and Practices.
Johnson, Karen E.
A study examined: (1) the extent to which teachers of English as a Second Language (ESL) possess beliefs about second language learning and teaching consistent with the major theoretical explanations in the field of ESL; (2) the extent to which these beliefs are associated with classroom instructional practices; and (3) perceptions of ESL teachers about the contextual variables in ESL classrooms that influence those practices. Data collected included information from the following sources: semi-structured interviews with 30 ESL teachers; descriptive data on the teachers' background and characteristics; classroom observation and instructional analysis with three of the teachers having different dominant theoretical orientations; and modified stimulus recall procedures to examine contextual variables. Results suggest that most teachers have theoretical orientations consistent with the major theories in the field. However, 40% had other orientations. The three teachers identified as having differing theoretical orientations were found to use instructional practices associated with the underlying assumptions of theoretical beliefs. Contextual factors identified as influencing instructional decisions were primarily the academic and real-life language needs of their students, supporting the notion of the strong influence of extra-instructional, societal factors. Implications for classroom instruction and teacher preparation are discussed. (MSE)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at a meeting of the New England Educational Research Organization (1990).