Rod Ellis is Professor of TESOL in the College of Education, Temple University. He has published widely in the area of second language acquisition, his latest book being SLA and Language Teaching (Oxford University Press). He has also published a number of textbooks used in Asia and Africa.
Teaching and Research: Options in Grammar Teaching
Version of Record online: 4 JAN 2012
1998 TESOL International Association
Volume 32, Issue 1, pages 39–60, Spring 1998
How to Cite
ELLIS, R. (1998), Teaching and Research: Options in Grammar Teaching. TESOL Quarterly, 32: 39–60. doi: 10.2307/3587901
- Issue online: 4 JAN 2012
- Version of Record online: 4 JAN 2012
A substantial body of research has investigated how form-focussed instruction contributes to language learning, but there has been very little discussion of how the knowledge provided by this research can inform language teaching. This article reviews research that addresses how grammar can best be taught in terms of four theoretically motivated instructional options: (a) structured input, (b) explicit instruction, (c) production practice, and (d) negative feedback. Given the difficulty of reaching firm conclusions based on this research, a number of possibilities for the pedagogic utilization of the information it makes available are considered, based on the distinction between teachers' practical knowledge and technical knowledge. These possibilities are (a) treating the research findings as provisional specifications to be experimented with through teaching, (b) conducting action research, and (c) conducting participatory research involving teachers and researchers working collaboratively. The need for research that investigates how teachers integrate technical knowledge into their personal pedagogical systems is also recognized.