Competence and Performance in Language Teaching

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Competence and Performance in Language Teaching
Jack C. Richards

Competence and Performance in Language Teaching
Jack C. Richards

cambridge university press

Cambridge, New York, São Paulo, Mexico City, Tokyo, Singapore, Madrid, Cape Town, Dubai, Melbourne, New Delhi Cambridge University Press 32 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10013-2473, USA © Cambridge University Press 2011 This book is in copyright. Subject to statutory exception and to the provisions of relevant collective licensing agreements, no reproduction of any part may take place without the written permission of Cambridge University Press. First published 2011 Printed in the United States of America isbn

978-1-107-91203-8 Paperback

Book layout services: Page Designs International


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Introduction  1

The language proficiency factor  3 The role of content knowledge   5 Teaching skills   9 Contextual knowledge   11 The language teacher’s identity   14 Learner-focused teaching   16 Pedagogical reasoning skills  19 Theorizing from practice   22 Membership of a community of practice   25 Professionalism   27


Conclusions  29

References  30


What is it that language teachers need to know and do to be effective classroom practitioners and language teaching professionals? How is this knowledge and practice acquired? And how does it change over time? The issue of language teachers’ knowledge and skill base is fundamental to our understanding of effective teaching and to approaches to language teacher education. In this paper I want to explore the knowledge, beliefs, and skills that language teachers make use of in their practice. My focus is on the understandings and practices of those teachers who would generally be regarded by their peers as exemplary language teaching professionals. We all recognize those teachers when we work with them. But what...
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