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Exploring Teachers' Knowledge of Second Language Pronunciation Techniques: Teacher Cognitions, Observed Classroom Practices, and Student Perceptions



This study explored some of the intricate connections between the cognitions (beliefs, knowledge, perceptions, attitudes) and pedagogical practices of five English language teachers, specifically in relation to pronunciation-oriented techniques. Integral to the study was the use of semistructured interviews, classroom observations, and stimulated recall interviews with the teachers and questionnaires with students. Findings reveal that the teachers' knowledge base of pronunciation techniques consisted mainly of controlled techniques—techniques strongly manipulated by the teachers and typically considered less communicative than other techniques. Of all techniques, guided techniques (semistructured) were the least frequently used, suggesting in part that the teachers' knowledge of how to incorporate guided techniques on a consistent basis with oral communication curricula may be limited. This article also includes discussion of three sets of beliefs held by some of the teachers: (1) listening perception is essential for producing comprehensible speech, (2) kinesthetic/tactile practice is integral to phonological improvement, and (3) pronunciation instruction can be boring.