Teachers' and students' perceived difficulties in implementing communicative language teaching in Bangladesh: A critical study

Hassan, Mohammad Kamrul (2014). Teachers' and students' perceived difficulties in implementing communicative language teaching in Bangladesh: A critical study. PhD thesis The Open University.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.ro.0000eefb


This thesis investigates teachers' and students perceived difficulties in implementing communicative language teaching (CLT) in English language classes in Bangladeshi secondary schools. It examines the extent to which factors both from the teachers and students perspective contribute to these difficulties. This study used multiple methods to explore teacher and student practices and perceptions regarding CLT (Golafshani, 2003), and it was influenced by an ethnographical approach (Denzin, 1994; Jeffrey and Troman, 2004; Hammersley, 2006). Quantitative methods such as statistical analysis of classroom observation 'data have been used alongside qualitative methods such as thematic analysis of interview data. Classroom observation reveals that teachers apply only minimal CL T principles in their classroom practice. Interview data reveal that there were two major perceived difficulties in implementing CLT in the classroom: pedagogical difficulties and environmental and personal difficulties. The factors that contribute to perceived pedagogical difficulties include insufficient training for both pre-service and in-service teachers; low English proficiency; inconsistency between the CLT approach and the national examination system; teachers' orientation- to traditional methods; the role of private tuition; isolated grammar practice; separation of female and male students in the school, and teachers' lack of familiarity with general teaching techniques. Interviews also reveal that environmental and personal difficulties are perceived to inhibit CLT classroom instruction. In order to work towards the provision of quality English language teaching in Bangladesh, this thesis reflects on the significant barriers to implementing CLT in Bangladeshi secondary schools and considers the steps that need to be taken to better prepare teachers for teaching English in this and other similar contexts. A thorough understanding of the multiple pedagogical, environmental and personal difficulties that teachers and students face in the English language classroom will help teacher educators and policy makers understand the complexity of implementing pedagogical change in this context.

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