Language teacher education in System

Language teacher education in System

Accepted Manuscript Language Teacher Education Research in System Quanjiang Guo, Jian Tao, Xuesong Gao PII: S0346-251X(19)30296-9 DOI: https://doi...

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Accepted Manuscript Language Teacher Education Research in System Quanjiang Guo, Jian Tao, Xuesong Gao

PII:

S0346-251X(19)30296-9

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2019.04.001

Reference:

SYS 2083

To appear in:

System

Received Date: 3 April 2019 Accepted Date: 3 April 2019

Please cite this article as: Quanjiang Guo, Jian Tao, Xuesong Gao, Language Teacher Education Research in System, System (2019), doi: 10.1016/j.system.2019.04.001 This is a PDF file of an unedited manuscript that has been accepted for publication. As a service to our customers we are providing this early version of the manuscript. The manuscript will undergo copyediting, typesetting, and review of the resulting proof before it is published in its final form. Please note that during the production process errors may be discovered which could affect the content, and all legal disclaimers that apply to the journal pertain.

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Language Teacher Education Research in System

Author details: Quanjiang GUO1, Jian TAO2, Xuesong GAO3 1

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College of Science & Technology, Ningbo University, Ningbo, China. (505 Yuxiu Road, Ningbo, 315212 China). Email: [email protected] 2 School of Foreign Studies, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, Shanghai, China. (777 Guoding Road, Shanghai, 200433 China). Email: [email protected] 3 School of Education, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. (High St, Kensington NSW 2052 Australia.) Email: [email protected]

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Corresponding author: Jian TAO. Telephone: (86)13764896857. Email: [email protected] Postal Address: Office 617, Red Tile Building, 777 Guoding Road, Shanghai, China (200433).

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Acknowledgement: This work was supported by Department of Education of Zhejiang Province (grant number jg20180466).

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Language Teacher Education Research in System Abstract

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In this review of System’s contributions to language teacher education research, we focus on 10 articles on language teachers, language teachers’ learning and

professional development, language teacher cognition, and language teachers’

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pedagogical practice, selected from a total of 147 relevant articles published in the

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journal (up to 2018). The review affirms the journal’s commitment to the dissemination of scholarship for language teachers to improve their pedagogy. It highlights the journal’s responsiveness to language teachers’ shifting professional development needs in increasingly complex pedagogical contexts. We conclude the

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Introduction

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research.

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review with our thoughts about the areas where the journal should publish more

System is proud of being a journal committed ‘to the applications of educational technology and applied linguistics to problems of foreign language teaching and learning’. The journal prioritizes the publication of studies that have explicit and significant implications for language teaching; at the least, the published studies in the journal need to have pedagogical relevance. In essence, these studies can be 1

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT meaningfully engaged with by pre-service and in-service language teachers through the mediation of language teacher educators for professional development.

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In order to develop professional capacity, language teachers need to develop ‘knowledge of pedagogy and practice, knowledge of students and knowledge of self’ (Santoro, 2009, p.34; Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 1999). This means that language

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teachers need to learn to improve their understandings (including those of pedagogy,

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practice, students, and self), which should be reflected in their practice. As language teachers are increasingly seen as critical in implementing pedagogical innovations and curriculum reforms, a growing number of studies have explored language teachers’ experiences, responses, and professional development in educational shifts. System,

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being responsive to the needs of language teachers’ professional development, has also disseminated research on language teachers to inform language teacher education.

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The journal has published a large number of studies that have explicitly examined

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critical issues in language instruction. The journal has also published extensively on the topic of language teacher education (including studies on language teachers), two of ‘the five main areas of research’ for language instruction (Ellis, R. 2008, p.467). In this review, we will present the trends in research on language teacher education that has been published on issues including language teachers with foci on their experiences, pedagogical practice, and professional development in this journal 2

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT since its inaugural issue—a total of 147 at the time of review (up to 2018). After we present our overview of the studies on language teacher education, we will identify 10

like to see published on this important topic in this journal.

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Research on Language Teacher Education in System

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studies for in-depth discussion before finally articulating the future studies we would

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In the history of the journal (for a historical overview see Table 1), the first article on language teacher education was published in 1980 (Carver, Cousin, & Ahrens, 1980) and a total of 7 articles were published on the topic before 1993. The journal also published the first special issue on language teacher education in 1998 (Oxford, 1998),

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riding on the first peak of publications on the topic between 1994 and 1998. More studies on language teacher education were published after 2008. In the last ten years,

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the journal has published a total of 97 articles (66% of the studies on language teacher

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education were published during the last decade). In 2018, the journal published at least 24 studies on the topic, covering a wide range of issues such as teacher beliefs, teaching practices, teacher identity, and teacher learning.

[Please insert Table 1 here]

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ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT The studies that were identified as being on language teacher education can be roughly classified according to four inter-related themes (see Figure 1), including

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language teachers, teacher cognition, teacher learning, and teaching practices. Studies on teacher cognition include researchers’ efforts to understand language teachers’ beliefs (including self-efficacy), their professional knowledge, and their

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understanding of teaching particular skills such as listening or pronunciation. We have

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identified a total of 47 studies on this group of topics in our survey. Research on teacher learning refers to studies that explored ways for language teachers to develop professional understanding and enhance their professional capacity. One popular approach to promoting teachers’ professional development is reflective practice. A

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total of 48 studies were identified to have addressed key issues to do with teachers’ professional learning. Given the fact that studies on teacher learning and teacher

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cognition take up two thirds of the identified studies on language teacher education

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(64.6%), System has clearly focused on these core issues for language teachers’ professional development and education. Research on language teacher education is intended to achieve language teachers’

cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding) (Borg, 2003), which result in better teaching. Therefore, it is no surprise that the third group of studies consists of those examining critical issues related to language teachers’ 4

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT teaching. A total of 28 studies on teaching practices investigated issues that many language teachers are concerned with, including feedback, delivery skills, and the use

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of L1. A total of 24 studies further investigated what it means to be language teachers in shifting sociopolitical contexts and during educational reforms, which can be

categorized as the group of studies concerning teacher identity. A significant topic in

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this group of studies is to do with language teachers’ language background, involving

E.M. 2016).

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[Please insert Figure 1 here]

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the use of potentially contentious labels such as native and non-native speakers (Ellis,

It must be admitted that the above categorization of the relevant studies is

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arbitrary, as the categories are all interrelated with each other in informing language

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teachers’ professional practice and enhancing students’ learning (see Figure 1). For instance, studies on teacher learning are also interested in exploring changes in language teacher cognition, while studies on language teacher cognition also describe how language teacher cognition evolves during different types of professional development activities. Changes in language teacher cognition have a significant impact on how language teachers actually teach and how they respond to various 5

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT teaching conditions, such as the use of technology, the application of pedagogical methods, and educational reforms. How language teachers change can be associated

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with who they are, and for this reason, language teacher identities have become an important topic for language teacher education research. Given the significant role

that teacher identities have in teacher learning, who teachers are and aspire to be also

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impact on language teacher cognition.

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In the coming sections, we shall focus on presenting 10 articles selected from the above-mentioned four groups of studies to illustrate how System has been committed to generating meaningful knowledge for language teacher education. In the review process, the review team first identified the trend as captured by Figure 1. Then each

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member of the review team used a proportional stratified sampling strategy to choose 10 articles from the 147 studies as informed by the chronological trend in Figure 1.

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We chose articles to have a balanced coverage on all the four themes and include

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studies conducted in a diversity of research contexts that have made System a distinctively international journal in language learning and teaching research. Through collaborative dialogues, the review team finalized the final 10 articles for inclusion in this virtual special issue. Due to the interrelated nature of the identified studies, we can only examine the main foci of a particular study when discussing its implications for language teacher education. We shall start with the two studies related to who 6

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT language teachers are (Árva & Medgyes, 2000; Nguyen, 2016), before moving on to look at three studies on language teachers’ learning and professional development

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(Mok, 1994; Farrell, 1999; Xu, 2015). Since the primary focus of teacher learning is language teachers’ shifting cognition, we will continue this review with three studies

on relevant topics in language teacher cognition (Borg, 1999; Feryok, 2010; Karimi &

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Norouzi, 2017). The last two studies in this review are to do with language teachers’

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practice (Gray, 2009; Sali, 2014), which reflect the impact of teachers’ learning.

Language Teachers

Research for language teacher education needs to start with who language teachers are,

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including what they are like and what they aspire to be. Due to the rise of English as an international language, the language is learnt, used, and also taught by individuals

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with first languages other than English. The linguistic backgrounds of English

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language teachers have often been used as an important identity marker in discussions about who can be regarded as legitimate English language teaching professionals. System is proud of publishing works on the topic of native and non-native teachers by leading scholars in the area, including Peter Medgyes (Reves & Medgyes, 1994; Árva & Medgyes, 2000). Árva and Medgyes (2000) recognize that teachers’ linguistic competence does have an impact on the ways that different teachers teach, and for this 7

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT reason they revisit the issue of native and non-native teachers by collecting primary data on language teachers’ teaching behavior in Hungary, video-recording lessons in

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addition to conducting interviews with the teachers. In their study, they not only compared the teaching behaviors of native and non-native teachers, they also analyzed the participants’ stated and actual behaviors.

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The results were not particularly surprising as they confirm that native and

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non-native speakers have different strengths and limitations. However, it is interesting to observe Árva and Medgyes advancing a reconciliatory approach to the native speaker vs. non-native speaker debate, as they argue that the principal of the school rightly assigned native speakers to teach conversation classes. Though the use of

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linguistic background as a selection criterion is questionable, native speakers do generate students’ motives for interaction and function as good teachers of

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conversation classes, despite any lack of professional training. It is widely accepted

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that ‘trained non-native teachers are better than untrained native ones’ (Essen, 1994, cited in Árva & Medgyes, 2000, p. 369), but the findings from Árva and Medgyes (2000) remind readers that reality presents a much more sophisticated picture. Native and non-native speakers come to teaching with different strengths and limitations. If their strengths can be properly used, they can both make meaningful contributions to students’ learning. In other words, it is important for educational administrators to 8

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT recognize that both groups of teachers have resources to enhance students’ learning. It is also important for language teacher educators to move beyond the dichotomy of

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native and non-native speakers (e.g. Ellis, E.M. 2016; Gearing & Roger, 2019) and find ways to support different teachers with different professional development needs. Intimately related to the discussion of native and non-native speakers, the

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identity of language teachers has recently emerged as a popular research topic as it

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helps us ‘have a clearer sense of who [teachers] are’ (Varghese, Morgan, Johnston, & Johnson, 2005, p. 22). Such understanding is instrumental in helping language teacher educators engage with pre-service and in-service teachers in professional development activities.

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Recognizing that the English language is being taught to younger and younger language learners in many contexts including Vietnam, Nguyen (2016) explored six

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primary school English language teachers’ perceptions of who they are in teaching

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young language learners. Drawing on the teachers’ life history narratives, Nguyen (2016) conducted a metaphor analysis of the data and identified five groups of metaphors that these teachers in Vietnam used to describe who they are. Given the age of the language learners taught by these teachers, it is not surprising to see that the participants regarded themselves as artists, often singing and performing before a group of young children to teach the language. We also expected to find that the 9

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT teachers saw themselves as parental figures, because teaching young language learners often involves the provision of emotional support and caring as part of

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teaching. We believe that it is also natural for the teachers to think of themselves as intercultural promoters, because they inevitably help their students to appreciate different cultures in the process of teaching the language.

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We do find it particularly insightful that Nguyen (2016) presented the teachers’

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perceptions of themselves as ‘trial judges’ and ‘democrats’. We believe that these two concepts are closely related to each other as the teachers felt that they needed to settle the students’ disputes, which would most likely take place in a classroom while the students were being encouraged to voice their opinions. Since the study was

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conducted in a Vietnamese context, where teachers are seen as figures of authority and can exercise tight control of classroom discipline, English language teachers’

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willingness to listen to students and their openness to student responses is a clear shift

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from the prevailing classroom tradition. If these metaphorical presentations on English language teachers’ roles and work can be pursued as the goals of English language teacher education programs in contexts similar to Vietnam, we may be able to see subtle changes in language learners with regard to what is expected of them within their own cultural tradition as a result of learning English. This adds further sophistication to the stereotypical images of language learners from different cultural 10

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT contexts, who may have been exposed to different ways of dealing with and responding to figures of authority from those promulgated by the cultural and social

Language Teachers’ Professional Development

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traditions in English classrooms.

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One of the most critical issues in language teacher education research is to identify the

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most effective approaches for promoting language teachers’ professional development. In light of the topics covered in the articles in this group, most of the authors apparently agree that reflection and collaborative learning are the most effective in helping language teachers develop pedagogical capacity and skills. Language teachers

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need to be supported and provided with stimuli from language teacher educators, colleagues, and even language learners to think about their teaching practice and learn

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relevant skills to enhance language learners’ learning.

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Among all the studies in this group, it is particularly important for us to mention Mok’s (1994) article on the reflections of experienced and inexperienced English language teachers in Hawaii. Mok (1994) analyzed reflective writings and introspective interview data produced by a group of teachers, and found that both experienced and inexperienced teachers had similar concerns, including: ‘1) teachers’ self concept, 2) attitudes, 3) teaching strategies, 4) materials used, and 5) expectations’ 11

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT (p.101). These teachers generated high quality in-depth reflections on teaching, but in contrast to our expectations, Mok (1994) does not identify differences between

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experienced and inexperienced teachers’ reflections, although they do have different professional development needs (e.g. providing ‘clear, explicit feedback’ for

inexperienced teachers and ‘frequent, positive feedback’ for experienced teachers) (p.

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106). Nevertheless, the findings suggest that changes in the participants’ conceptions

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of teaching are slow, and the participants’ conceptions were ‘modified by various sources during their professional development’, including ‘research, theory, practice, personal experience, general knowledge of people and human interactions, etc.’ (Mok, 1994, p. 107).

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Though the participants’ cognitive change was found to be a slow process, the findings do imply that language teacher educators need to engage with experienced

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and inexperienced teachers in different professional development activities to address

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their professional concerns. Language teacher educators also need to empower teachers with sufficient professional knowledge as well as critical and analytical skills to support their reflection for professional development. As prior experience is a major source of professional growth, it is important for language teachers to reflect on their experiences to link theory and practice. While reflection in Mok’s (1994) study, being a form of self-inquiry, was mostly 12

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT done by individual teachers, Farrell (1999) presents a study on reflective practice in a teacher development group in South Korea. He found that the teachers in the

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development group did reflect on teaching, but the relevant reflective discussion was more at the descriptive level (e.g. sharing their experiences and referring to an

expert’s view on a particular issue) than the critical level (e.g. offering a personal

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opinion and evaluating a lesson). This meant that such reflections did not necessarily

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lead to teachers’ cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding), and consequently resulted in limited changes in their professional practice. Like Mok (1994), Farrell (1999) problematizes reflection as an assured path of professional development for teachers, and argues that reflection in professional

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development groups needs to be facilitated and supported. To this end, Farrell (1999) proposes a set of five suggestions to enhance critical reflection for pedagogical

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enhancement in professional development groups, including: 1) creating groups for

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language teachers, 2) creating ground rules to guide activities, 3) providing sufficient time for reflection, 4) using external stimuli such as research articles and classroom data, and 5) reducing anxiety and creating an emotionally safe space for reflection. We believe that these suggestions are still useful for language teacher educators and educational administrators to organize and sustain professional development groups in promoting reflective practice for better language teaching. 13

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Related to the spirit of collaborative professional development in Farrell’s (1999) study on reflective practice, Xu (2015) presents a longitudinal study on in-service

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teachers’ collaborative lesson planning and its impact on the participants’ professional development in China. We found that Xu’s (2015) differentiation of product-oriented and problem-based approaches in the participants’ collaborative lesson planning was

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particularly meaningful in identifying ways to guide these pre-service teachers

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towards more productive collaboration. It is most interesting to note that a product-oriented approach, ‘dedicated to producing a complete, ready-to-use set of teaching resources as a visible product’ for sharing (Xu, 2015, p. 146), does not necessarily foster capacity among teacher trainees for teacher autonomy or better

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control of their professional practice, though it does help to reduce their anxiety in teaching practicum. A problem-based approach, which does not generate concrete

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solutions but encourages them to share insights and ‘facilitate exchange of teaching

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experience’ (Xu, 2015, p. 146), motivates the trainees to search for answers and develop their capacity for teacher autonomy, although the relevant experience can be stressful.

To some extent, Xu (2015) confirms the message delivered by Mok (1994) and Farrell (199) that teachers, including pre-service and in-service teachers, need to undertake conscious efforts to gain from reflective practice and collaborative learning 14

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT for professional development. Teacher learning is not easy, and therefore teacher development is a long and tortuous process requiring support and guidance from

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experienced teachers and language teacher educators.

Language Teacher Cognition

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At the core of teacher learning, on which most of the professional development efforts

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focus, is language teachers’ cognition. Language teacher educators would like to be able to facilitate language teachers’ cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding) to demonstrate that language education and development programs have made an impact on language teachers and their teaching.

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However, language teachers’ cognition, including their beliefs, knowledge, and understanding, is highly complex and slow to change (e.g. Mok, 1994). It deserves

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further research attention.

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System was privileged to publish one of Borg’s (1999) earlier studies on teacher cognitions of teaching grammar when the notion of language teacher cognition was being developed and starting to attract research attention. Borg (1999) makes a strong case in favor of the need to focus on language teachers in order to improve the learning and teaching of languages. He draws on ‘a conception of teachers as active, thinking, decision-makers’ to explore the cognition underlying language teachers’ 15

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT grammar-teaching practices (p. 20). Borg conceptualizes the notion of language teacher cognition as a construct that encompasses ‘the store of beliefs, knowledge,

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assumptions, theories, and attitudes about all aspects of their work’, which language teachers have and which profoundly influences the ways they act in teaching (p.19). He argues that language teacher cognition is instrumental in helping us appreciate

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language teachers’ practice and understand what cognitive processes underlie teachers’

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decision making in teaching.

Using grammar teaching as an example, Borg (1999) reveals a host of factors and processes underpinning language teachers’ decision-making and pedagogical behaviors in teaching. For instance, language teachers often use teaching methods

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eclectically as a result of what they understand about pedagogical conditions, and thus blur the traditional dichotomies of inductive vs. deductive grammar teaching.

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Language teacher cognition research creates a space to show how language teachers

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process various knowledge, input, and contextual conditions cognitively to make pedagogical decisions, and this space allows language teacher educators to identify areas where we can help language teachers undergo particular cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding) to bring about desired innovations in practice. For this reason, language teacher cognition remains one of key research topics in language teacher education research. 16

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Following the line of work on language teacher cognition, Feryok (2010) draws our attention to the dynamic nature of language teacher cognition in Armenia, and

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highlights the profound mediation impact that context has on language teachers’ cognitions. She further advances a theorization of language teacher cognition in light of complexity theory, in which language teacher cognitions are seen as complex and

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heterogeneous since different teachers have different understandings of particular

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aspects of language teaching and different levels of declarative or procedural knowledge. She also shows that language teacher cognitions are dynamic, changing in a nonlinear manner with ‘small changes in an initial state creating large unpredictable differences in later states’ (p. 273). In addition, language teacher cognitions are seen

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as contextualized, co-adaptative for changes in a given context, and open to being influenced by shifting contextual conditions. Finally, Feryok (2010) points out that

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language teacher cognitions are self-organizing as language teachers become critically

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aware of the differences between practices and cognitions, which may cause them to undergo cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding) to achieve a better alignment between cognitions and practices. However, this article left many significant questions unanswered, such as whether language teacher cognitions are self-organizing systems or teacher selves are organizing their cognitions. Nevertheless, Feryok (2010) remains a significant piece 17

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT of work that System published on language teacher education, as it provides a highly lucid conceptual framework for researchers to explore the common dissonance

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between teacher practices and cognitions. The complexity framework as elaborated in the article will be a highly useful conceptual tool for researchers to investigate and

understand language teachers’ shifting cognitions, so that relevant findings can inform

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language teacher educators’ efforts to promote language teacher development.

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Karimi and Norouzi (2017) showcase how language teachers’ cognitive development can be supported in Iran, a critical question for many language teacher educators with regard to our professional commitment to supporting language teachers’ professional development. They explored how mentoring, a commonly used

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strategy to support novice teachers’ professional growth, contributed to novice language teachers’ cognitive development in terms of their pedagogical

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knowledge—their knowledge about language teaching, which is a key issue in teacher

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cognition research. Measuring pedagogical knowledge in terms of the participants’ thoughts on particular pedagogical issues, Karimi and Norouzi (2017) found that novice teachers ‘produced almost twice as many pedagogical units in their post-program performance as they did before the program’ (p. 45). However, the authors were quite cautious in attributing this growth to the effect of mentoring, since the changes echo previous findings on the differences between inexperienced and 18

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT experienced teachers without any involvement of mentoring programs. They rightly concluded that mentoring may give novice teachers opportunities to articulate the tacit

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thoughts they had prior to their participation in the mentoring program, although it is also possible for the teachers to formulate new pedagogical thoughts as mediated by mentoring teachers.

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As far as we understand, language teachers’ cognitive changes are slow and

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non-linear (Mok, 1994; Feryok, 2010), and it is therefore not possible for Karimi and Norouzi (2017) to pin down the contributions of mentoring in the novice teachers’ professional development. It is also simplistic for the study to conceptualize language teachers’ professional development in terms of pedagogical knowledge, as previous

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research has already highlighted the dissonance between teacher cognitions and teacher practices (e.g. Borg, 1999; Feryok, 2010). Nevertheless, how we may

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facilitate language teachers to undergo cognitive changes before behavioral ones

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remains a critical question for language teacher educators.

Language Teachers’ Practice All our efforts to effect changes in language teachers’ cognition should eventually bring about positive changes to language teachers’ practice, which will ultimately help language learners learn better. Therefore, it is important for researchers to document, 19

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT explore, and understand how language teachers draw on theories and the impact of this on language learners’ learning. In this review, we highlight two articles on this

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topic. The first is to do with secondary content teachers’ application of language teaching principles in planning content lessons for learners with English as an

additional language in New Zealand (Gray, 2009). The second article examines

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teaching English is often considered controversial.

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English language teachers’ use of their L1 in Turkey (Sali, 2014), as the use of L1 in

In many senses, Gray’s (2009) study is unique, investigating how content subject teachers used their knowledge of second language acquisition in preparing pedagogical activities for secondary school learners who need to develop academic

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language skills for the learning of the content subject in English. The descriptive accounts in the article capture how the teachers identified issues in the social sciences,

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which students need the support of language forms to learn, how they decided on the

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appropriate pedagogical approaches to help the students learn the required language forms for the content subject, and how they designed relevant pedagogical activities related to the language forms. The results also show that second language acquisition research findings can meaningfully contribute to teachers’ effective pedagogical decision-making in facilitating the students’ learning of language forms as well as content subjects. Teachers may need to develop a more sophisticated understanding of 20

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT how language operates in specific disciplines such as the social sciences or mathematics.

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Debates on the focus of pre-task planning (implicit vs explicit knowledge) and task-based research findings may help content subject teachers become much nuanced in their approach to fine-tuning particular pedagogic activities to prepare students for

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learning content subject knowledge and related language forms. In the rise of content

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language integrated learning (CLIL) and the use of English as medium of instruction in many contexts, it has become necessary for researchers to understand how teacher knowledge contributes to pedagogical practices, so that we may help language teachers to improve their practice. Gray’s (2009) inquiry also confirms that teachers’

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pedagogical practice can be usefully understood in relation to language teachers’ cognition, a view that is enthusiastically promoted by Borg (1999) and Feryok (2010).

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The last article on language teachers’ practice relates to the controversial use of

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L1 in teaching English. The use of L1 in the language classroom does reduce the limited exposure that many language learners have to the target language, and traditionally it has been discouraged. However, scholars have also contended that the use of L1 is necessary for language learners as it helps reduce their anxiety and cognitive challenges when learning another language. In an attempt to move beyond the dichotomy of L1 vs. L2, Sali (2014) examined the functions that L1 may play in 21

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Turkish secondary schools from the teacher’s perspective. The study revealed that Turkish teachers of English largely (59%) used their and the students’ L1 (Turkish)

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for academic functions, including ‘Explaining aspects of English’, ‘Translating words and sentences’, ‘Eliciting’, ‘Talking about learning’, ‘Reviewing’, and ‘Checking

comprehension’ (Sali, 2014, p. 311). The Turkish teachers also used L1 for managerial

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purposes (27%) such as ‘Maintaining classroom discipline’ and ‘Monitoring’, as well

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as for social/cultural purposes including ‘Establishing rapport’ and ‘Praise’ (Sali, 2014, p. 311).

The study also identifies unique features of the Turkish teachers’ use of L1. For instance, they used L1 to explain grammatical points, but they rarely used it to explain

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culture-related information when explaining aspects of English, due to the fact that grammar teaching dominates the learning and teaching of English in Turkey. The

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explanation of Turkish teachers’ use of L1 suggests the significant role that language

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teacher cognitions have in driving teachers to make particular pedagogical decisions and adopt specific pedagogical behavior in teaching. The study affirms the importance for language teacher educators to understand language teachers’ cognitions and work out ways to support language teachers’ cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding) before any behavioral changes take place in teaching.

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ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Future research for language teacher education As demonstrated in the above review of studies related to language teacher education,

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it can be argued that future research should continue exploring the core issues to generate meaningful findings for language teacher education. Among all the topics

related to language teacher education, language teacher cognition and teacher learning

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to effect cognitive changes (e.g. beliefs, knowledge, perspective, and understanding)

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may be the two central issues that deserve more attention.

Language teachers’ professional learning often takes place in highly challenging contexts, since language teachers are often in need of more resources, time, and space to cope with the increasingly complex task of language teaching. For this reason, we

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need to rely on various conceptual tools (e.g. identity, agency) and perspectives (e.g. the dynamic system theory) to explore and understand what drives language teachers

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to learn and what sustains this drive. Thus, it is necessary for researchers to delve into

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language teacher motivation and commitment, which only receives a small amount of research attention in comparison with language learning motivation. A better understanding of language teacher motivation will not only facilitate continuing professional learning, it will also contribute to students’ learning motivation in turn. In a similar vein, System has recently published a special issue devoted to the use of agency in understanding language teachers’ teaching and professional lives (e.g. 23

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Miller, Kayi-Adar, Varghese, & Vitanova, 2018). We would also like to see studies on language teachers’ professional practice and

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development in low-resource contexts (e.g. Smith, Padwad, & Bullock, 2017). We believe that these teachers need to be supported in devising and implementing paths to professional development since so much research has been conducted in ‘Western’,

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‘educated’, ‘industrialized’, ‘rich’ and ‘democratic’ societies (‘WEIRD’ research) and

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relevant findings may be of limited relevance to these teachers’ professional development. More studies are needed to develop contextualized understanding of language teacher cognition as a dynamic system, which will deepen our understanding of teacher learning (e.g. Tao & Gao, 2017, 2018). Contexts for relevant research also

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need to move beyond the traditional language classroom to include pedagogical contexts such as CLIL (or situations where simultaneous learning of content subject

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and language forms is promoted), technology-enhanced language teaching, and

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informal (out of class) learning. It remains to be seen how language teachers adapt themselves to these pedagogical contexts and how they develop their professional capacity for new pedagogical tasks. In addition, attention should be paid to how language teachers experience and respond to these changes behaviorally, cognitively, and emotionally. The majority of studies on language teacher education in System are to do with 24

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT English language teaching. Committed to the learning and teaching of all languages (other than first languages), this journal need to welcome submissions related to

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teachers of languages other than English. Teachers of languages other than English may have to deal with situations where these languages do not enjoy the same social prestige as English, and they may have to cope with even more limited resources in

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pursuing their professional development. While we are interested in disseminating

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research findings to help language teachers develop their professional capacity, we are also interested in publishing studies that focus on the development of language teachers who are committed to social justice and equity in teaching. Such studies could address an observation made by Lei and Liu (2018) regarding ‘the lack of

(p.11).

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discussions of socio-economic-ideological issues in language learning and teaching’

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We are aware that ‘language learning and teaching take place in a complex

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milieu, mediated by a variety of conditions and relationships within and beyond the confines of classroom walls’ (Gao, 2019, p.162). The complexity of language teaching needs to be addressed fully in research, so that relevant findings can inform language teachers’ pedagogical decisions. Furthermore, since it has become increasingly important for language teachers to help language learners develop semiotic resources for self-assertion in low-resource contexts, it is important for language teachers to 25

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT become aware of contextual mediation on language learners and their learning. It is necessary for language teachers to make social justice and equity important goals in

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language education.

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References

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Árva, V. & Medgyes, P. (2000). Native and non-native teachers in the classroom. System, 28(3), 355–372. DOI: 10.1016/S0346-251X(00)00017-8.

Borg, S. (1999). Studying teacher cognition in second language grammar teaching.

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System, 27(1), 19–31. DOI:10.1016/S0346-251X(98)00047-5.

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Borg, S. (2003). Teacher cognition in language teaching. Language Teaching, 36, 81-109. DOI: 10.1017/S0261444803001903.

Carver, D., Cousin, W. D., & Ahrens, P. (1980). Self-directedness and exploratory microteaching in an in-service ELT programme. System, 8(3), 205–210. DOI:

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10.1016/0346-251X(80)90002-0.

Cochran-Smith, M., & Lytle, S. L. (1999). Relationships of knowledge and practice:

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Teacher learning in communities. Review of Research in Education, 24, 249-305.

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DOI: 10.2307/1167272.

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ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Farrell, T. S. C. (1999). Reflective practice in an EFL teacher development group. System, 27(2), 157–172. DOI: 10.1016/S0346-251X(99)00014-7.

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Karimi, M. N., & Norouzi, M. (2017). Scaffolding teacher cognition: Changes in novice L2 teachers’ pedagogical knowledge base through expert mentoring initiatives. System, 65, 38–48. DOI:10.1016/j.system.2016.12.015.

Lei, L., & Liu, D. (2018). The research trends and contributions of System’s publications over the past four decades (1973–2017): A bibliometric analysis. System, 80, 1–13. DOI:10.1016/j.system.2018.10.003. 28

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Miller, E. R., Kayi-Adar, H., Varghese, M., & Vitanova, G. (2018). Editors’ introduction to interdisciplinarity in language teacher agency: Theoretical and

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analytical explorations. System, 79, 1–6. DOI: 10.1016/j.system.2018.07.008. Mok, W. D. (1994). Reflecting on reflections: A case study of experienced and inexperienced ESL teachers. System, 22(1), 93–111. DOI:

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10.1016/0346-251X(94)90043-4.

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Nguyen, C. D. (2016). Metaphors as a window into identity: A study of teachers of English to young learners in Vietnam. System, 60, 66–78. DOI:10.1016/j.system.2016.06.004.

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the special issue. System, 26(1), 1-2. DOI: 10.1016/S0346-251X(97)00063-8. Reves, T., & Medgyes, P. (1994). The non-native English speaking EFL/ESL teacher’s

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self-image: An international survey. System, 22(3), 353–367. DOI:

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Santoro, N. (2009). Teaching in culturally diverse contexts: What knowledge about ‘self’ and ‘others’ do teachers need? Journal of Education for Teaching, 35(1), 33–45. DOI: 10.1080/02607470802587111. 29

ACCEPTED MANUSCRIPT Smith, R., Padwad, A., & Bullock, D. (2017). (eds.) Teaching in low-resource classrooms: Voices of experience. London: British Council.

reform. Teaching and Teacher Education, 63, 346–355. DOI:10.1016/j.tate.2017.01.010.

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Tao, J., & Gao, X. (2017). Teacher agency and identity commitment in curricular

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Tao, J., & Gao, X. (2018). Identity constructions of ESP teachers in a Chinese

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university. English for Specific Purposes, 49, 1–13. DOI:

Varghese, M., Morgan, B., Johnston, B., & Johnson, K. A. (2005). Theorizing language teacher identity: Three perspectives and beyond. Journal of Language, Identity &

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Education, 4(1), 21–44. DOI: 10.1207/s15327701jlie0401_2. Xu, H. (2015). The development of teacher autonomy in collaborative lesson

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preparation: A multiple-case study of EFL teachers in China. System, 52, 139–

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148. DOI: 10.1016/j.system.2015.05.007.

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Table 1: Articles on Language Teacher Education from 1974-2018.

Table 1: Articles on Language Teacher Education from 1974-2018

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70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0

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1974- 1979- 1984- 1989- 1994- 1999- 2004- 2009- 20141978 1983 1988 1993 1998 2003 2008 2013 2018

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Articles from 1974-2018

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Figure 1: Themes in Research on Language Teacher Education

LANGUAGE TEACHERS (identity aspirations and characteristics)

Shifting LANGUAGE TEACHER COGNITION

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LANGUAGE TEACHING PRACTICES

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Language teachers' LEARNING and PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT