What is it about?

This interventionalist small-scale study investigates English language teachers’ incentives for teaching grammar in secondary schools in Iran. An educational reform in the country required teachers to employ communicative pedagogies while teaching English at secondary schools in order to develop students’ communicative ability. The results from this study revealed that despite their attempts to implement the reform directives, the teachers developed a pedagogy that could address the local and urgent needs of their particular teaching and learning environment. The teachers' strong beliefs in the importance of accuracy, enhanced by their students’ low English proficiency and parental expectation encouraged them to employ traditional pedagogies and guide lessons with a major focus on initial explicit grammar teaching.

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Why is it important?

The findings from this study revealed that a shift from old ways of teaching is far from a simple process. Educators, policy makers and curriculum developers need to provide teachers with prolonged and continuing support to help them revisit their focus on those beliefs that are resistant to change, develop more flexibility, and reconstruct a model of teaching that not only aligns with the theoretical underpinning of approaches that help them develop meaningful communication but also fits well into their particular teaching milieu.


This publication provides important implications for future studies. Also, given that the implementation of communicative approaches in secondary schools in Iran is still in its early stages, the study calls for informed actions to provide teachers with further support so that they develop willingness to take responsibility for sustained development and revisit and revise those beliefs and practices that rely on one single teaching method or approach, contradict communicative practices, and are not aligned with their teaching and learning particularities.

Elahe Shakhsi Dastgahian
Monash University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Teachers’ incentive for grammar instruction in Iran's reformed EFL context, International Journal of Applied Linguistics, May 2021, Wiley,
DOI: 10.1111/ijal.12350.
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