Language learner autonomy in a tertiary context: Teachers' beliefs and practises

Journal Article
Alshumaimeri, Simon Borg and Yousif . 2019
English language teaching, foundation programme, learner autonomy, Saudi Arabia, teachers' beliefs
المجلة \ الصحيفة: 
Language Teaching Research
رقم العدد: 
رقم الإصدار السنوي: 
مستخلص المنشور: 

This questionnaire study examined the beliefs, practices and constraints related to learner autonomy reported by 359 teachers (mainly expatriate) working on an English Preparatory Year Programme (PYP) at a university in Saudi Arabia. The teachers associated learner autonomy primarily with notions of independence and control and saw it as the ability and motivation to complete tasks, individually and/or collaboratively, in and/or outside the classroom, and with no/little teacher involvement. They believed that promoting learner autonomy was a desirable goal and described how they tried to achieve this goal in their teaching. Most were, however, less positive about the feasibility of promoting learner autonomy and explained this in relation to curricular, societal and, above all, learner factors (such as lack of motivation and independence and low proficiency in English). In discussing these findings, several avenues for further research are identified and through which teachers’ conceptualizations of learner autonomy can be understood using mixed methods research and with reference to a range of socio-cultural, intercultural, professional, occupational and institutional forces.