Native speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: a duoethnographic study

Issues in ELT

‘Native speakers’ are better at teaching speaking and should be given conversational and high level classes, right? They can’t tell a verb from a noun, though, so don’t ask them to teach any grammar.

‘Non-native speakers’ know the grammar better and since they know the students’ L1, they should teach lower levels, right? They’re never proficient enough, though, so don’t give them advanced groups.

Stereotypes, misconceptions and prejudices about ‘native’ and ‘non-native speaker’ teachers such as the ones above are rife in our profession. If you join any discussion on the topic, you’re bound to see more than one.

When we talk about native speakerism, we also frequently think that it always benefits ‘native speakers’. They get better jobs. They’re paid more. They get to travel around the world. However, this is just one side of the coin.

While native-speakerism has gained much attention in recent years, the complex ways in which it influences the lives and career trajectories of individual teachers has often been overlooked. So in this podcast Marek Kiczkowiak and Robert Lowe from the TEFLology podcast question some of the assumptions about ‘native’ and ‘non-native speakers’, as well as about native speakerism.

The podcast is based on a paper they recently coauthored entitled “Native-speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: A duoethnographic study”, which was published in the journal Cogent Education. In it, they take an innovative dialogic approach where the voices and personal experiences of the two authors come to the fore.

The article is open access which means anyone anywhere can access, download and share it completely for free. You can read the article here, or by copying and pasting this link to your browser: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/2331186X.2016.1264171

And if you enjoyed it, please Tweet it, Facebook it, Instagram it: social-media it around. And leave us a comment here too. We’d love to hear what you think.

Reference:

Lowe, R.J. & Kiczkowiak, M. (2016). Native-speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: A duoethnographic study. Cogent Education 3 (1): 1254171. Available on-line: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/2331186X.2016.1264171

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6 things you should know about teaching pronunciation

Pronunciation

The more ‘native-like’ the pronunciation, the better, right? Well, not necessarily. In this episode we take a look at English as a Lingua Franca research into pronunciation and discuss 6 things that every English teacher should know about teaching pronunciation.

If you’re interested in learning more about teaching pronunciation, take a look at Marek’s on-line course How to teach pronunciation: the ELF perspective. A 6 step practical guide for English teachers. And since we really value and appreciate the time you spent listening to the podcast, Marek’s prepared an exclusive 70% discount just for you. On top of this, you’ll get lifetime access to the course and a 30 day money back guarantee, no questions asked.

Some of the things that you will learn in the course:

  • how ELF perspective influences our view of teaching pronunciation;
  • which pronunciation features we should focus more on in class and why;
  • which pronunciation features might hinder intelligibility in international contexts;
  • why ‘non-native speakers’ can be great pronunciation models;
  • how to adapt your course book;
  • what to consider before adopting the ELF perspective;
  • how to raise awareness of ELF in the classroom;
  • how to create your own pronunciation materials.

You can also take a sneak peek inside the course before you decide here as well as preview two other lectures, by going to the course home page, scrolling to the curriculum and clicking on the ‘preview’ button. And below is a short video where Marek tells you a bit more about the course and how it’s structured. Ready to give your pronunciation teaching a boost?

If you enjoyed this episode, please give us a like and a share, and maybe leave a comment too. Don’t forget that the podcasts are available on a number of music services, while the videos are on YouTube. Just click on one of the logos below to listen to the podcasts on your favourite music service.

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Teaching lexically, materials writing and the CELTA – interview with Hugh Dellar

Issues in ELT

In this episode we talk to Hugh Dellar, an experienced teacher, teacher trainer and materials writer. We start off by discussing the lexical approach, what it is, how it differs from other ELT approaches and how teachers can utilise it. We then go on to talk about Hugh’s books ‘Outcomes’ and ‘Teaching lexically’, co-written with Andrew Walkley, and his latest project: London Language Lab – a language school right in the heart of London. We finish off by discussing Hugh’s recent post about the CELTA course and why it might promote native speakers.

As always, we’re looking forward to your comments. Do you see yourself as a lexical teacher? Why (not)? Do you think CELTA promotes native speakers? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

hughHugh Dellar is a teacher and teacher trainer with over twenty years’ experience in the field. He is also the co-founder of Lexical Lab and co-author of two five-level General English series, Innovations and Outcomes (now in its second edition), both published by National Geographic Learning. His first methodology book, Teaching Lexically, is due out via Delta Publishing in July this year 2016 and he also co-runs a quality language school in central London – London Language Lab.

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Which pronunciation model should we teach?

Pronunciation

the_English_Speaking_World_0

In this episode of The TEFL Show podcast we follow on from two previous episodes where we discussed the phonemic chart focusing first on vowels here and then on consonants here. So in this podcast we look at the various pronunciation models that teachers offer to students and try to answer the question which pronunciation model should we teach. We focus on our experiences as teachers in Asia, discuss linguistic imperialism and English as Lingua Franca.

As usual, we’d love to hear from you, so please leave us a comment below and take part in the poll below. Which pronunciation model should we teach to our students?

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CELTA: some things you need to know

Teacher training

In this episode we give a brief introduction to CELTA, probably the most popular and widely recognised certificate for English language teachers. We start off by describing some of the strengths of the course. In the second half we look at a few shortcomings of the course, and suggest what in our opinion should be changed.

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Should Native Speakers take proficiency tests?

Exams

In this The TEFL Show podcast we discuss whether Native English Speakers (NES) should also be required to provide an official proof of their language proficiency. What triggered the podcast was the fact that more and more English-speaking countries (e.g. Australia) require both NES and Non-Native English Speakers (NNES) to prove their proficiency in English by sitting an internationally recognised exam, e.g. IELTS. Another trigger was what happened to Marek recently. When applying for a PhD in a British university, he was asked to provide results of a proficiency test taken within the last two years. This was despite the fact he’d done his BA in English, completed CELTA, DELTA and that he’s an IELTS examiner, which we think is enough to prove he’s highly proficient. If his passport were British, though, there would have been no need to take any exam, because, supposedly, all NES are always completely proficient. Or are they?

Don’t forget that all our podcasts are also available on a number of music services, and the videos are on our YouTube channel. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

 

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