Saturday 9:30 - 10:20 AM
Azalea, Olympic ParkTel
EFL Teacher Training in Korea
Korea University, Korea
KATE Invited Speaker
A quick glance at the curricula of EFL teacher training institutions
shows three major categories of courses: literature, linguistics,
and some EFL theories and techniques. Some
colleges offer language skills courses taught by English native speakers.
institutions, however, teach content courses in English. The
content courses, especially those of literature and linguistics, seldom
have bearing on pedagogical implications either
in theory or in practicum. Upon earning 140-156 credits in the above
courses, plus some general education courses, college students are
licensed to teach English in secondary schools.
I have insisted that a professional EFL teacher, wishing to facilitate
language learners to reach at certain level of the English
language use ability, needs three qualifications: English
proficiency, teaching techniques, and knowledge of SLA principles
related to language teaching and assessment. Those qualifications
are not required of traditional teachers who view foreign language ability
as that of grammar analysis and translation. The reason why EFL teacher
education is filled with literature and linguistics, is that the majority
of the concerned faculty holds such a traditional view.
produce EFL teachers who can talk about English "academically,"
but not necessarily those who can use English as communication or
use various pedagogical techniques to
facilitate EFL acquisition in the classroom. There are three groups
which campaign for change: Secondary School Teachers of EFL,
the Ministry of Education, and University EFL Majors. The teachers
meet and talk in English, exchanging ideas. The Ministry has kept
pushing communicative English teaching since the early seventies. University
EFL majors have tried to revise curricula
so that the courses become relevant to EFL professionalism.
All those efforts are not expected to achieve substantial success
unless a drastic change is made to implement the three conditions
mentioned above, preferably in the form of a
state policy for teacher selection. I propose that newly employed
EFL teachers ought to demonstrate a certain level of English proficiency,
maybe ACTFL ADVANCED in all four areas,
satisfactory teaching techniques, and basic knowledge of second language
acquisition and assessment. What about those already on the job?
They can learn and change as they work with new teachers. The new selection
policy will naturally motivate the university faculty as well. Without
this kind of policy change, we will keep seeing EFL education inefficiently