Factors influencing native English-speaking teachers’ professional practices in South Korean primary schools

Ke Hyang Lee, Raqib Chowdhury

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


In recent years, English language teaching (ELT) in South Korea has experienced significant transformation from a grammar-based to a communicative language curriculum. Commencing in 1995, the Korean government began employing native English-speaking teachers (NESTs) to support Korean English teachers’ (non-NESTs) implementation of communicative language teaching (CLT) in
Korean public schools. However, the Korean government has recently reduced funding for employment of NESTs in response to their alleged ineffective professional practices. This study takes a qualitative approach to understand factors that influence NESTs professional practices in Korean primary schools. Semi-structured interviews in English and Korean, respectively, were employed to investigate NESTs’ and non-NESTs’ views on the topic. Findings of this study indicate that there are a range of factors that negatively influence NESTs’ professional practices. This study also investigates the professional development and training needs from the perspective of NESTs and local English teachers regarding young English language learners in South Korean public primary schools.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-103
Number of pages25
JournalKorea TESOL Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Native speakerism
  • English Language Teaching
  • Professional Practice
  • Korea

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