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Toward a negotiated autonomy: culture, teaching perceptions, and participation of Bhutanese refugees in an adult migrant English program in Australia

Koirala, Subhash 2019 , 'Toward a negotiated autonomy: culture, teaching perceptions, and participation of Bhutanese refugees in an adult migrant English program in Australia' , TESOL Journal , pp. 1-15 , doi: 10.1002/tesj.460.

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Abstract

This article investigates how adult English language learners from refugee backgrounds respond to teaching strategies that aim to facilitate the promotion of learner autonomy. Interest in learner autonomy has grown significantly in the area of second language (L2) teaching. The culturally appropriate model of autonomy has been widely advocated in the L2 literature. This article explores how students’ premigration experiences influence the development of autonomous learning. The data used in this article were collected from classroom observations and retrospective interviews with Bhutanese refugee students and teachers in an adult migrant English program in Australia. The findings show that refugee students’ premigration experiences, their cultural perceptions of teaching, and their learning preferences have a negative influence on the implementation of autonomy‐supportive instructional practices. This article suggests that adult refugee students from non‐Western cultural backgrounds should be guided slowly and progressively into the new culture and pedagogy of autonomous learning. Teachers should investigate how ready the students are in terms of taking responsibility and then use appropriate scaffolding as needed.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Koirala, Subhash
Keywords: refugees, autonomy, TESOL
Journal or Publication Title: TESOL Journal
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN: 1949-3533
DOI / ID Number: 10.1002/tesj.460
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2019 TESOL International Association

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