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ERIC Number: EJ870087
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Dec
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 42
ISSN: ISSN-0039-8322
Postmethod Discourse and Practice
Akbari, Ramin
TESOL Quarterly: A Journal for Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages and of Standard English as a Second Dialect, v42 n4 p641-652 Dec 2008
The second language (L2) teaching profession has gone through a number of dramatic changes during the last two decades. A look at journal articles and topics included in teacher development books shows a broadening of scope in terms of the number and the depth of the topics addressed. Language teaching, one can conclude, has become more inclusive in the sense that more of the reality of the lives of students, and at times those of teachers, are taken on board as significant in affecting the outcomes of teaching and learning. A conceptual shift, however, which has not been completely appraised and appreciated, is the disappearance of method from academic discussions and the rise of the postmethod debate. The postmethod argument has academically put an end to method discussions and the search for the good method, although its practical counterpart, that is, methodology, is still a valid concept and very much alive for many teachers. This article argues that, in reality, the postmethod is qualitatively not much different from method because both of them ignore or misrepresent the realities of the classroom and, in turn, impose their own version of hypothetical reality. While method has ignored the reality of learning and language learners, postmethod has ignored the realities of teaching and language teachers. By making too many demands of teachers, the postmethod pedagogy has, in practice, turned a blind eye to the social, political, and cultural realities of language teaching contexts and the limits within which teachers operate. To present a balanced argument, the first part of this article gives a brief account of what post method is, touches on some of its philosophical foundations, and acknowledges some of its contributions to current English-language-teaching (ELT) discourse. The second part deals with the features the postmethod discourse needs to take into account for it to move from the realm of ideas to that of practice.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A