ERIC Number: ED328082
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1991-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Upgrading the Target Language Proficiency Levels of Foreign Language Teachers. ERIC Digest.
Phillips, June K.
Language teachers recognize that improving their foreign language proficiency is an ongoing process. New ways of evaluating teachers' language skills, and curriculum changes emphasizing performance highlight skill inadequacies. Many teachers have not reached functional language levels, and language skill upgrading is a more relevant issue than skill maintenance. Other teachers have used their skills only or largely in restricted classroom conditions, with limited opportunities to hear native speech. Teachers can participate in formal and informal programs to enhance their proficiency, including study and travel abroad programs and institutes and summer seminars. The concept of academic alliances, in which teachers assume some responsibility for their own pedagogic and linguistic growth, has taken root in many areas. Local groups identify their own needs and arrange opportunities to practice and improve language skills. Research supporting the effectiveness of these learning experiences is limited. Programs with specific missions to upgrade language proficiency are designed to concentrate on improving teachers' abilities in higher-level tasks of narration, explanation, hypothesis, negotiation, and supported opinion. As future programs are developed, assessment of their effectiveness should be included. (MSE)
Descriptors: Educational Needs, Educational Strategies, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Inservice Teacher Education, Instructional Effectiveness, Instructional Improvement, Language Maintenance, Language Proficiency, Language Teachers, Second Language Instruction, Teacher Associations
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics, Washington, DC.