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Abstract

Details

English Teaching: Practice & Critique, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1175-8708

Book part
Publication date: 6 September 2021

Don Zancanella

This chapter provides a first-person account of the conceptualization and development of a new academic department at a large university in the American Southwest. It includes a…

Abstract

This chapter provides a first-person account of the conceptualization and development of a new academic department at a large university in the American Southwest. It includes a description of the conditions that caused the new department to come into being, a discussion of debates surrounding the name and identity of the new department and a delineation of the context – political, social, and demographic – from which the department emerged. The chapter also includes reflections from former doctoral students on how the department's structure and focus influenced their professional identities and careers. The chapter is framed as one educator's story, in the tradition of “teacher stories” that emerged in the late twentieth century.

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 September 2021

Abstract

Details

Luminous Literacies
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-452-3

Article
Publication date: 3 May 2016

Andrew Goodwyn

This paper aims to provide a critical discussion and re-evaluation of the Personal Growth (PG) model of English, noting that the summer of 2016 marks 50 years since the Dartmouth…

1896

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a critical discussion and re-evaluation of the Personal Growth (PG) model of English, noting that the summer of 2016 marks 50 years since the Dartmouth Conference and the publication of John Dixon’s seminal response to the conference in Growth Through English (1967). The influence of the London School of English was reaching its height at the time with its emphasis on the development of the individual student, the importance of identity, the fundamental role of talk and the rejection of the importance of studying only the traditional literary canon. Dixon argued that PG needed to replace the previous “models” of English, one being “skills”, and the other “cultural heritage”. So strong was that influence that in 1988, the model of “Personal Growth” was one of the five identified by the authors of the first National Curriculum for English in England; it was placed first in the list, but the authors argued the five models were “equal” (the other four were “Adult Needs”, “Cultural Heritage”, “Cross-curricular” (CC) and “Cultural Analysis”.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey-style research begun in 1990, then throughout the next 25 years, mostly in England but also in the USA. It has investigated the views principally of the classroom teachers of English about their beliefs about the subject and also their views of official versions.

Findings

These investigations have demonstrated the importance of all the models (except CC, considered by English teachers to be a model for all teachers), but always the primacy of PG as the key model that matches English teachers’ beliefs about the purpose and value of English as a school subject and argues for the demonstrable, yet problematic, centrality of PG.

Research limitations/implications

Any survey has limitations in terms of the sample, the number of returns and in the constraining nature of questionnaires. However, these surveys provide consistent results over nearly 30 years and have always encouraged respondents to offer qualitative comments. Surveys always have a value in providing an overview of attitudes and feelings.

Practical implications

English teachers remain convinced that student-centred progressive education offers the most valuable form of English for all students and they find themselves profoundly at odds with official prescriptions. This unquestionably has a damaging effect on teachers’ motivations and can lead them to leave their profession.

Originality/value

The paper provides a careful rereading of Growth Through English, so often simply taken for granted, and represents its key, neglected arguments in the more balanced 1975 edition. It provides research-based evidence of why the PG model remains central to English teachers and how the international discussions of the Dartmouth seminar still stimulate new thinking, for example, at the 2015 International Federation for the Teaching of English (IFTE) conference. The paper outlines why PG has been so resilient, and also, partly based on data from the 2015 IFTE conference, argues for a future model of English, which is based on PG but with a more critical and social dimension.

Details

English Teaching: Practice & Critique, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1175-8708

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 September 2016

Samuel Jaye Tanner

This essay uses the author’s experience with teacher evaluation as a point of departure to consider how narrative methods might be used to complicate contemporary trends in…

Abstract

Purpose

This essay uses the author’s experience with teacher evaluation as a point of departure to consider how narrative methods might be used to complicate contemporary trends in teacher evaluation. Ultimately, this piece hopes to contribute to a discussion about how storytelling might be implemented as a model of teacher evaluation that could speak back to instrumentalist or technical practices in schools that undermine the complexity of the teaching profession.

Design/methodology/approach

This piece uses narrative inquiry to consider teacher evaluation.

Findings

This piece uses narrative inquiry to consider more complex implementations of teacher evaluation.

Originality/value

This piece is an original consideration of the potential forms of teacher evaluation.

Details

English Teaching: Practice & Critique, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1175-8708

Keywords

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