On Language Teachers’ Classroom Practices: Bridging Conversation Analysis with Language Teacher Education Research

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Drew S. Fagan


Since the late 1980s, second language teacher education (SLTE) research has grown immensely as a field of inquiry within applied linguistics, particularly as teacher knowledge, expertise, and cognition have been found to influence students’ language learning processes in classroom contexts (Borg, 2011). Much empirical evidence illustrating this connection has been gathered using a variety of ethnographic data techniques such as individual interviews, focus groups, journal writing, questionnaires, field notes, and stimulated recall sessions. The strengths of these data sources are numerous in that, when triangulated, they provide insight into teachers’ thought processes and perceptions of their teaching practices. It has been asserted elsewhere (see Fagan, in press a), though, that while many studies within the SLTE field have attempted to draw implications from such findings for teachers’ classroom practices, the methods used do not allow for such assumptions. In fact, as Borg (2011) presents in his summary of SLTE research over the past two decades, there remains a lack of juxtaposition between findings on teachers’ perceptions and their actual classroom practices in situ

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