Teacher belief and methodology
There are three main areas of research in the field of teachers’ beliefs that are the views of teaching, beliefs on roles of the teachers and metaphors of teachers. The teachers held either of two views of teaching. These are curriculum-based teaching and student-based teaching. In case, of the first view, the teachers pre-plan the classroom activities based on the relevant curriculum. On the other hand, in the second view, the teachers focus on those activities that are of interest to the group of students in the classroom. Thus, the activities for effective teaching differ in both views. The views on teaching methodology have different effects on the thinking and decision making abilities of the teachers. In case, of the curriculum based view of teaching the teachers focus on accomplishing the planned curricular content using pre-planned classroom activities. In such case, students are not the basis of decisions about how and when to teach but the teacher focuses if the students have understood the curriculum material or not. On the other hand, the teachers of the student based learning view keep in mind all the characteristics of the students when making instructional decisions. Such teachers are also interested in modifying the curriculum based on the needs of the students. Birello presented a third view of teaching followed in the field of second language learning.
The three perspectives of teaching as found from the researchers were:
- Teacher-centred perspective where the teacher is the primary focus. It indicates crucial role of the teacher in managing class, giving explanations, voice quality, developing questioning skills etc. Thus, stress is on the performance of the teacher.
- Curriculum-centred perspective where the instructional unit of lesson is stressed and focus remains on the structuring, content flow, transitions, development, task types and lesson goals.
- Learner-centered perspective where the primary focus is on learners.
The teachers consider impact of lessons of the learners and encourage interest, participation and learning outcomes of the students. It is noted that each teacher uses more than one perspective of teaching. The second line of research in this regard is the role of teacher. The teachers allow the students to explore the subject freely by collaborating with other students and teachers. The third line of research in light of teachers’ beliefs and methodology is of the use of metaphors. However, the origins and influence of these metaphors on the actions taken within the class are still not explored. These metaphors include teaching as a skill, teaching as an entertainment, teaching as an occupation and teaching as a journey. Second language teachers focus ranges from content to student/ learning and this focus determines the methodology adopted by the teacher in the class.