Chinese-Western “Contact Zone”: Students’ Resistance and Teachers’ Adaptation to Local Needs
AbstractMany universities in Mainland China hire native-speaking teachers of English annually to teach English writing. Having been trained in Western Europe or North America, these native-speaking teachers of English are on the front line of global education contact zones as they introduce their writing instruction in an English as a foreign language (EFL) country where education strongly reflects different cultural values. This interview study examines the perceptions of 12 expatriate writing instructors about their teaching at 10 universities in China. The participating teachers practiced what they believed to be good teaching activities to teach Chinese students to think critically and write in a direct Western style. However, some encountered resistance from students who felt disadvantaged by having an expatriate instructor who did not know how they learned English and how they should be prepared for structure-oriented local tests. The study suggests that teaching in global education contact zones can be a process of finding ways to interweave the local culture of learning with one’s own.
How to Cite
Shi, L. (2009). Chinese-Western “Contact Zone”: Students’ Resistance and Teachers’ Adaptation to Local Needs. TESL Canada Journal, 27(1), 47–63. https://doi.org/10.18806/tesl.v27i1.1035