Theory, ‘plausibility’ and practice in English Language Teaching (by publication): from disciplinary knowledge to practitioner understanding

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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This submission for a PhD by publication is situated in the discipline of Applied Linguistics, focusing specifically on the field of English Language Teaching (ELT) and the relationship between theoretical and disciplinary knowledge on the one hand, and English language teachers’ understandings of such knowledge and its relevance for their own situated pedagogic practice on the other. The submitted work harnesses practitioner experiences in relation to theoretical knowledge and challenges traditional tenets of ELT thought and practice, particularly around the key pedagogic issue of own-language use in the classroom.

My publications make an original contribution to the field of ELT from an Applied Linguistics perspective by:
•framing a problem-posing approach to professional practice and disciplinary knowledge based on the tenet that practitioner understanding depends on teachers’ own sense of plausibility (publications b, d, and e)
•contributing to the development of practitioner understanding of the theory-practice interface in ELT, by: illuminating research and research dilemmas in practice (publication a); exploring the relationship between disciplinary knowledge and local pedagogic practice (publications b, d, and e); and mapping and, where appropriate, challenging traditional assumptions underpinning ELT, particularly concerning own-language use in the classroom (c, d and e).
•developing disciplinary knowledge through the collection and analysis of primary data drawn from teachers’ understanding of their own practices and pedagogic contexts (publications a, d, e) or through the shaping of academic and professional discourse through the synthesis of sources (b and c).

Consequently, my publications have resulted in a range of impacts and practical applications in the field of ELT across a variety of contexts around the world, in: classroom pedagogy, materials and resource development, curriculum design, and CPD and teacher training/education programmes.

Thus, the work put forward in this submission lies on the boundaries of applied linguistic theory and ELT practice, mediating disciplinary knowledge in light of real world experiences, perspectives and problems.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Northumbria University
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017


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