Assignment Code 5661

Topics: Language education, Teaching English as a foreign language, Teacher Pages: 29 (9144 words) Published: April 30, 2011

Teacher’s Name: Prof. Izhar-Ul-Haq
Student’s Name: Uzma Ambreen Ch
Roll No. AH526620
Course Code: 5661
Allama Iqbal Open University


What do you mean by the term role in context of English language teaching? Distinguish between a transmission role and interpersonal role. Justify with examples


Increasingly the world, there is a move within education to adopt a constructivist view of learning and teaching. In part, the argument for this move is a reaction against teacher-centered training that has dominated much of education, particularly adult and higher education, for the past forty years or more. While I do notargue with the basic tenets of constructivism No single view of learning or teaching dominated what might be called, ‘good teaching.’ In our research, we documented five different perspectives on teaching, each having the potential to be good teaching. (Pratt and Associates, 1998) This chapter will introduce those five perspectives, namely: Transmission, Developmental, Apprenticeship, Nurturing, and Social Reform. Hopefully, this will convince you to resist any ‘one size fits all’ approach to the improvement or evaluation of teaching.

What is a Perspective on Teaching?

A perspective on teaching is an inter-related set of beliefs and intentions that gives direction and justification to our actions. It is a lens through which we view teaching and learning. We may not be aware of our perspective because it is something we look through, rather than look at, when teaching. Each of the perspectives in this chapter is a unique blend of beliefs, intentions and actions. Yet, there is overlap between them. 2 Similar actions, intentions, and even beliefs can be found in more than one perspective. Teachers holding different perspectives may, for example, have similar beliefs about the importance of critical reflection in work and educational contexts. To this end, all may espouse the use of higher-level questions as a means of promoting critical thinking. However, the way questions are asked, and the way in which teachers listen and respond when people consider those questions, may vary considerably across perspectives. These variations are also directly related to our beliefs about learning, knowledge, and the appropriate role of an instructor.

It is common for people to confuse perspectives on teaching with methods of teaching. Some say they use all five perspectives, at one time or another, depending on circumstances. On the surface, this seems reasonable. However looking more deeply, one can see that perspectives are far more than methods. In part, this confusion derives from the fact that the same teaching actions are common across perspectives: Lecturing, discussion, questioning, and a host of other methods are common activities within all five perspectives. It is how they are used, and toward what ends, that differentiates between perspectives.

It could not be otherwise, given that
perspectives vary in their views of knowledge, learning, and teaching. What follows is a ‘snapshot’ of each perspective, including a metaphor for the adult learner and a set of key beliefs, primary responsibilities, typical strategies, and common difficulties. Each snapshot is a composite of many representative people. Therefore, it would be unlikely that any one individual would have all the characteristics listed for any one perspective. As you read them, try to locate yourself, not by looking for a perfect fit, but for the best fit.

A Transmission Perspective

The Transmission Perspective is the most common orientation to teaching in secondary and higher education, though not in elementary and adult education. From the Transmission Perspective, effective teaching starts with a substantial commitment to the content or subject matter. It is essential, therefore, for Transmission-oriented teachers to have mastery over their content.

Many who teach...

References: Chomsky, N. (1959) Review of “Verbal Behaviour” Language 35.
Harmer, J. (1991) The Practice of English Language Teaching. England: Longman.
Hymes, D. 1972. ‘On Communicative Competence’ in J.B. Pride and J. Holmes (eds.): Sociolinguistics.
Krashen, S. 1984 The Input Hypothesis. England: Longman.
Littlewood, W. (1984). Foreign and Second Language Learning. Cambridge University Press.
Skinner, B. (1957) Verbal Behaviour. Appletone-Century-Crofts.
Widdowson, H.G. (1989). ‘Knowledge of language and ability for use’. Applied linguistics, 10 (2), pp. 127-
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