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Students' and Teachers' Perceptions of Effective Teaching in the Foreign Language Classroom: A Comparison of Ideals and Ratings [electronic resource]

by Brown, Alan Victor.

Abstract (Summary)
Relatively few studies have specifically compared L2 teacher's perceptions of effective FL teaching with their own students (Beaudrie, Brown, Thompson, 2004; Brosh, 1996, Kern, 1995a). The current study explores FL teachers' and students' perceptions of FL teaching by analyzing matches between each group's perceptions. The principal objectives of this study were threefold: 1) the identification and comparison of post-secondary L2 students' and L2 teachers' perceptions of effective teaching behaviors on a Likert-scale questionnaire; 2) the comparison of students' and teachers' perceptions of how often specific teaching behaviors are performed; 3) the comparison of students' evaluations of teaching to their instructors' self-evaluations on a similar questionnaire. A secondary objective of the study was to compare students' responses on selected items from the university's TCE form with their responses on the discipline-specific questionnaires used in this study.Forty-nine teachers and their 83 intact beginning-level language classes (101-202) across nine languages at the University of Arizona voluntarily participated in the study during Spring semester, 2005. Participating students and teachers filled out questionnaires regarding perceptions of 1) what effective FL teachers should be doing in the classroom, 2) how often certain target behaviors are performed, and 3) how effective teachers perform them. An additional component of the study involved the comparison of the students' ratings on the language-teaching questionnaire with selected questions relative to teaching taken from the standard TCE form used university wide.Statistical analyses demonstrated that teachers and students, overall and by teacher, do have very different perceptions regarding FL teaching. Issues such as immediate error correction, task-based teaching, students' use of FL early on, use of pair and small-group work, and grammar teaching all reflected differing opinions between groups. Participants' responses to the use of English in testing, the importance of native-like command of the target language by the teacher, the simplification of the FL by the teacher, and the necessity of situating grammar into real-world contexts were similar. In summary, students and teachers seem to have dissimilar views on grammar teaching and communicative language teaching strategies with students favoring a grammar-based approach and teachers favoring a communicative FL classroom.
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School:The University of Arizona

School Location:USA - Arizona

Source Type:Master's Thesis

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