How Foreign Language Teachers Get Taught: Methods of Teaching the Methods Course


  • Marcia L. Wilbur

    1. The College Board
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      Marcia L. Wilbur (PhD, University of Georgia) is the Director of Curriculum and Content Development in the Advanced Placement Program of the College Board, New York City.


Abstract: This study examined the methodological training of preservice secondary foreign language teachers through the lens of the college methodology course syllabus from 32 participating postsecondary institutions, survey data from the related methods instructors, and questionnaires from 10 of the instructors. The findings indicate that preservice foreign language methodological training, while based on common beliefs that theory informs practice and that the Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century (National Standards, 1999) should frame instruction and assessment, is accomplished in a great variety of ways. Most significantly, because there are few courses that address meeting the needs of diverse learners, preservice teachers may not be connecting an eclectic blend of instructional practices to learner needs. There is also evidence that while the Standards are recognized in theory as important to instruction, they are not being fully integrated into teaching practices.