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ERIC Number: EJ1139663
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Apr
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0033-6882
The Case for Teachers' Classroom English Proficiency
Freeman, Donald
RELC Journal: A Journal of Language Teaching and Research, v48 n1 p31-52 Apr 2017
New conceptualizations of English are challenging traditional norms of what the language is, as well as how it is taught and by whom. These changes, coupled with the expansion of teaching English across the educational spectrum from younger grades to tertiary levels, present challenges to many national education systems. The role of teachers' English competence, particularly in public-sector teaching, is central to how these educational changes play out in countries around the world. How classroom English language ability is described connects to many dimensions of teaching. This article argues that conventional definitions that connect general English proficiency, often based on generic statements about language use, do not address the type of classroom language teachers need in order to teach. Further, language training focused on general language fluency often does not directly address teachers' particular professional needs. Policies and practices based on these definitions disadvantage most English language teachers by defining problems of teaching quality in terms of deficits in general English proficiency. "English-for-Teaching," a conceptualization of the English teachers' use in classroom language teaching, is based on a languages for specific purposes (LSP) methodology. The construct defines three functional areas of classroom language use--managing the classroom, understanding and communicating lesson content, and assessing and giving students feedback. The article outlines the construct and a professional development programme based on it. Analyses from implementing these programmes provided by ministries of education to pre- and in-service teachers in Japan and in Vietnam are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan; Vietnam
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A