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Title: Teachers' perspectives on ELT : a research journey from challenging to conflict circumstances in Syria
Author: Alyasin, Abulqader
ISNI:       0000 0004 5916 0113
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis is a journey which started investigating CLT innovation and implementation in Syrian schools and, due to the armed conflict in the country, ended with another layer of focus on the impact of Syria War on (education and) ELT, teachers and students. Employing a qualitative approach, the data incorporated audio-recordings and interviews as the two main research tools in the study. The lesson transcripts from two teachers in Syria (Grade 7) and a teacher in a camp school in Turkey (Grade 8) were explored in light of retrospective interviews to uncover how far teachers responded in their actual classroom practices to CLT curriculum innovation tenets and how implementation challenges, including teachers’ cognitions and contextual realities, influenced their practices. Celebrating diversity rather than uniformity, I also endeavoured to appreciate teachers’ own complex reasoning on their practices and how they made sense of their teaching in their immediate contexts. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 11 other Syrian teachers to further elicit perspectives on contextual forces and teacher beliefs, suggestions for a locally feasible ELT pedagogy and the impact of the current war circumstances on their lives and careers. The analysis of the data reveals the value of seeing teachers as agents of their own practice both in ‘normally’ difficult circumstances and in extreme crisis situations. Teachers’ pedagogical decisions and practices seem to be grounded on their beliefs as to what is viable rather than on the MoE plans. The study points to the significance of not only appreciating teacher beliefs and agency in establishing context-sensitive ELT pedagogies, but also capitalising upon local teachers’ experiences and perspectives and involving teachers in both educational planning and implementation. The final layer of the thesis shows that it is valuable to explore teacher agency in crisis situations and to consider ways to extend the literature to recognise conflict-affected ELT as a research area in which locally produced pedagogies are encouraged, supported and developed within the constraints of displacement and refugee camp schools.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB Theory and practice of education