Foreign language teaching assistant training: A contrastive analysis of trainers and trainees' perspectives

Inmaculada Gómez Soler, Marta Tecedor Cabrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study explores current practices of teaching assistant (TA) training in doctoral-granting institutions and expands on previous studies by exploring the views of both faculty and graduate students involved in the process. Our overall goal is to determine whether training practices and goals have changed and, if so, to what extent, in order to reflect the changing objectives of the foreign language (FL) field in the last decades-objectives that involve the development of translingual and transcultural competence and the integration of twenty-first-century skills. We conducted a nationwide survey of Spanish departments that focused on three main areas: language, culture, and technology. Results indicate that TA training is based on immediate teaching needs and lacks long-term goals of professionalization and that there are substantial differences in opinion between TAs and faculty in charge of the training regarding its effectiveness. We argue that our findings have direct implications for the revitalization of TA education since only when TAs are trained to fully integrate culture and language and incorporate technology in meaningful ways in lower-level courses will FL departments be able to strive for the desired integrated curriculum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38-54
Number of pages17
JournalHispania
Volume101
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Keywords

  • Cultural competence
  • Digital literacy
  • Integrated curriculum
  • Professional development
  • TA training
  • Translingual and transcultural competence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language

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