Close Encounters with the Consequences of ‘Native-speakerism’: Reflections and Actions-on.

A recent piece I wrote for EAP for Social Justice. Please let me know what you think and if you’ve ever experienced ‘native speakerism’ in your workplace.

EAP for Social Justice SIG (BALEAP)

‘Native-speakerism’ is something that ELT is trying desperately to move away from, although efforts are, in my opinion, still not enough. It still seems that we as a global ELT community hold a widely-espoused belief: ‘native speakerism’ is wrong! – yet, the industry, or should I say, certain members, continue to promulgate the idea of the ‘native speaker’ being the ideal teacher, even when anywhere near eighty percent of teachers fall into the ‘non-native’ category (Cangarajah, 2005). There has been much research and numerous studies on the changing face of ELT, looking at the interactions in English and why the ‘native speaker’ teacher need not be the perfect or, in fact, correct model. But the aim of this article is not to take you through the research; rather, it is to share with you two encounters I, as a teacher trainer, had in the previous academic year regarding the consequences

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  1. Thank you for writing about this widespread problem. Non-native teachers have a harder time getting teaching jobs due to this ‘native-speakerism’.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome! It is a vile thing, but I hope that by doing our part we can start to reduce some of its negative effects.


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