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Title: Teachers' reported beliefs about the role of grammar, and their observed pedagogical practices of foreign languages teaching in England
Author: Liviero, Sara
ISNI:       0000 0004 5354 5442
Awarding Body: University of Exeter
Current Institution: University of Exeter
Date of Award: 2014
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The purpose of this dissertation was to investigate teachers’ beliefs about a fundamental aspect of foreign language teaching: grammar. Whilst progressively reinstated in the national curriculum and consistently sustained by foreign languages teachers’ practices, grammar’s perceived irrelevance for assessment criteria of the nationally adopted method of assessment - the General Certificate of Secondary Education – kept it caught in conflicting discourses of policy, linguistic research and teaching practices. Whilst foreign languages policy and practice kept converging towards increasing focus on forms in language education along correspondences with linguistic research, the assessment has remained focused on generic communicative, skill-focused criteria. My small-scale research aimed to find how foreign languages teachers translated grammar teaching policy and possible theoretical guidelines in their teaching practices, by collecting data through interviews, observations and think-alouds. The findings revealed disparate educational contexts, approaches, as well as interpretations of grammar teaching. It led me to realise the necessity to probe further into a much more thorough theoretical and methodological underpinning of foreign languages education. As this study concludes, the secondary foreign languages curriculum has become disapplied, and schools and teachers have been left to devise their idiosyncratic foreign language learning strategies and rationales. As foreign languages teaching becomes anchored in the primary education curricular provision, this research hopes to document the need to frame theoretical and methodological guidelines, a consistent foreign languages education rationale, leading to a consistent and convincing education and provision of future foreign language teachers.
Supervisor: Myhill, Debra A.; Watson, Annabel M. Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Teacher cognition ; educational research ; applied linguistics