The role of tutor-student written feedback in the development of teacher language awareness

Hugo Sanchez, Katie Dunworth

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper reports on a study that combined two areas of key importance in language teacher development: teacher language awareness and tutor-student written feedback. Teacher language awareness is of major concern in language teaching because of its impact on teachers' decision making and classroom behaviour, such as designing courses and adapting materials according to learners’ needs, responding effectively to student queries, and presenting new language in ways which are optimally accessible to students (Andrews 2007). Likewise, feedback has been found to play a significant role in supporting student learning (Merry et al. 2013), even though it has not always been found to be effective in achieving this goal (Wingate 2010). The main objectives of this study were to explore the role of tutor-student written feedback in the development of teacher language awareness, and to identify the cognitive and contextual factors that may facilitate or inhibit this process.The project was exploratory-interpretive and followed a multiple-case design. Two cases were conducted within an English language teacher education course at a state university in Argentina. Each case comprised a language awareness class, specifically the tutors who, as part of their responsibilities, provided written feedback, and a sample of three students. Data were collected from a total number of five tutors and six student teachers using preliminary background interviews, content analysis of written feedback reports, and stimulated recall interviews. The findings show that conceptualisations of language awareness, feedback and pedagogical contexts impacted on the content and type of feedback tutors provided, and on the ways in which student teachers interpreted and responded to written feedback. These results contribute to a greater theoretical understanding of the link between feedback and teacher language awareness, and the positioning and role of tutor-student written feedback in teacher education and development programmes. ReferencesAndrews, S. (2007). Teacher Language Awareness. Cambridge University Press.Merry, S., Price, M., Carless, D., & Taras, M. (Eds.). (2013). Reconceptualising Feedback in Higher Education. Abingdon: Routledge. Wingate, U. (2010). The impact of formative feedback on the development of academic writing. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education 35(5), 519–533.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAcceptance date - Aug 2016
EventAILA 2017 The 18th World Congress of Applied Linguistics: Innovation and epistemological challenges in Applied Linguistics - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Duration: 23 Jul 201728 Jul 2017


ConferenceAILA 2017 The 18th World Congress of Applied Linguistics
Abbreviated titleAILA 2017
CityRio de Janeiro
Internet address


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