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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton January 22, 2019

Teacher Frustration and Emotion Regulation in University Language Teaching

Sam Morris

Sam Morris is a lecturer in the English Language Institute at Kanda University of International Studies, Japan. He is currently completing his PhD at the University of Leicester, researching the situated emotion regulation that language teachers in Japan employ during their work. He is interested broadly in the role that emotions play in second language teaching and acquisition, as well as the affective dimension of language teacher psychology.

and Jim King

Jim King is Programme Director of the MA Applied Linguistics and TESOL courses at the University of Leicester, UK. His research interests centre around situated psychological aspects of foreign language education, with current projects exploring the relationship between classroom silence and foreign language anxiety and the role that emotions play in language teachers’ professional practice. His books include Silence in the Second Language Classroom and The Dynamic Interplay Between Context and the Language Learner (both published by Palgrave Macmillan), with Language Teaching: An Emotional Rollercoaster (co-edited with Christina Gkonou and Jean-Marc Dewaele) due to appear in 2019.

Abstract

Few jobs come without irritations, and foreign language instruction comes with its own particular set of frustrations which, when accumulated, can lead to stress and eventual burnout for teachers. One mechanism for reducing such frustrations is that of emotion regulation, the cognitive and behavioral strategies individuals employ to manage the emotions they experience or display. To date, no known studies have reported specifically on the in-class frustration experienced by language teachers, or on how teachers regulate their feelings of frustration. Herein, the authors discuss the experiences of seven EFL teachers at a university in Japan obtained through a series of semistructured interviews, classroom observations and corresponding stimulated-recall sessions. The authors discuss four salient thematic frustrations: student apathy, classroom silence, misbehavior in the context of relational strain, and working conditions. The results reveal that participants applied contextually-dependent emotion regulation behaviors, the success of which was often contingent on the participants’ levels of confidence and control over the stressors. Thus, participants showed more success in managing pervasive low-level stressors such as apathy and silence, and more support would be welcome to aid them to manage more debilitating stressors such as student misbehavior. The authors offer suggestions for teachers, trainers and institutions on reducing frustration.

About the authors

Sam Morris

Sam Morris is a lecturer in the English Language Institute at Kanda University of International Studies, Japan. He is currently completing his PhD at the University of Leicester, researching the situated emotion regulation that language teachers in Japan employ during their work. He is interested broadly in the role that emotions play in second language teaching and acquisition, as well as the affective dimension of language teacher psychology.

Jim King

Jim King is Programme Director of the MA Applied Linguistics and TESOL courses at the University of Leicester, UK. His research interests centre around situated psychological aspects of foreign language education, with current projects exploring the relationship between classroom silence and foreign language anxiety and the role that emotions play in language teachers’ professional practice. His books include Silence in the Second Language Classroom and The Dynamic Interplay Between Context and the Language Learner (both published by Palgrave Macmillan), with Language Teaching: An Emotional Rollercoaster (co-edited with Christina Gkonou and Jean-Marc Dewaele) due to appear in 2019.

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Published Online: 2019-01-22
Published in Print: 2018-11-27

© 2018 FLTRP, Walter de Gruyter, Cultural and Education Section British Embassy

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