Understanding teachers’ sense of self and agency in enacting EFL curriculum in Padang: a sociocultural perspective

Year: 2019

Author: Desmaizayatri, Desmaizayatri

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Literature on ELT curriculum and language teaching, particularly in Indonesia suggest a paradigm shift in the role of the teachers from being a curriculum implementer to becoming a curriculum developer or curriculum maker. However, with several constraints in enacting the curriculum it is significant to understand teachers’ sense of self and agency in enacting the curriculum mandate within their sociocultural and historical situated context.

Within qualitative research approach and by using the sociocultural perspective as the theoretical lens, specifically with the notion of mediation, this paper examines how EFL or English as Foreign Language teachers’ pedagogy in Padang, the capital city of West Sumatra province, is influenced by their sociocultural contexts. Semi-structured interviews are designed to gain and in-depth understanding of some sociocultural issues in the teaching practice of ten secondary school EFL teachers in Padang.

The findings indicated that within their sociocultural contexts, some English teachers have creatively addressed some mandates of the curriculum through the teaching materials used in the English classrooms. In this research, the findings also presented how the teachers show manoeuvrability, inventiveness, and reflexive choices in dealing with curriculum guidelines as cultural historical artefact.

From the findings in this study, it is recommended to highly consider the notion of localising the curriculum in Indonesia, particularly in Padang, by paying substantial attention on the issues of local custom and washback effect of examination.

Keywords:sociocultural perspectives, sense of self and agency, teachers practice, curriculum enactment