An Exploration of the Process of Materials Writing with reference to the Academic, Professional and Practical Needs of English Language Training (ELT) writers in the Sultanate of Oman
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Reason for embargo
Materials writers’ activities are informed by personal language-learning experience together with personal principles of second language acquisition (SLA), input received from English language training (ELT) courses for teachers, and from classroom experience. This study aims to examine how these factors affect writers’ production of materials and to document a range of best practices resulting in effective materials. The study is aimed primarily at English as a foreign language (EFL) materials writers and teachers who are currently writing or who are thinking of embarking on materials production. This exploration is situated within the interpretative / social constructivist paradigm using an exploratory methodology and employing surveys and interviews to collect data from the participants all of whom were practising materials writers working in the Sultanate of Oman. The findings present quantitative and qualitative data which is then analysed and interpreted with reference to the literature review. The findings suggest that whilst the writers plan and produce materials in a professional manner, most of them acknowledge a need for further informed input on ELT writing processes. From the findings it emerges that writers often work without a clear view of the theoretical and pedagogic underpinnings to their materials production in terms of approach and methodology. The findings also highlight that writers use procedures for needs analysis (NA) and materials’ evaluation which lack breadth and efficacy in terms of best practice. These findings are then discussed in relation to the relevant literature and the study concludes with implications arising from the discussion chapter together with recommendations for supporting writers’ professional activities. Whilst the study was based in an Omani context, the literature review, findings, implications and recommendations are all generalizable to writers the world over as local contexts will pose similar challenges to those presented here.
EdD in TESOL