The need for a culture-sensitive approach to teacher education in English as a foreign language

  • Edit Hegybíró Kontra

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    The aim of this Portfolio is to provide insight into some characteristics of I lungarian learners of English, and to use this as evidence in pointing out the need for a change in current teacher education practices in the preparation of English teachers. The Portfolio comprises two projects. Project `A, ' Ihingal-ia» t ieivs about Native Eiiglislr , Sppeakiiig Insiniclors, explores the positive and negative experiences of Hungarian learners with native English speaking instructors. With the help of qualitative research and analysis the learners' needs and expectations are highlighted. Project `B, ' The L inguaage Leariii, ig SIralegie Used by Ilungariarl Learners of English, investigates the learning strategies of I lungariann learners and their general approach to learning. From the qualitative analysis of the data particular features emerge which have not been documented in the literature before. The research results point out those features of the learner which prevailing teacher education models do not prepare novice teachers for. The portfolio is based on I lungarian experience but an international relevance is also demonstrated. The two projects are each placed in the wider context of teaching English as a foreign language (EFL), and thus they provide evidence that besides preserving some universally valid elements of teacher education models, it is necessary to find ways of catering for particular local needs. Instead of imposing the values and beliefs represented by Anglo-American teacher education approaches, textbooks or methods, there are local, context-specific features which have to also be taken account of. At a time when English is primarily used for international communication, teachers can only be prepared in a training program which, instead of the present Anglo-American cultural dominance, adopts an intercultural approach. The final section of the portfolio outlines the possible elements of such a culture-sensitive teacher education model for teaching English as a foreign language.
    Date of AwardMar 1998
    Original languageEnglish


    • English language
    • Study and teaching
    • Foreign speakers

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