Reflective journal writing: Exploring in-service EFL teachers' perceptions
Faculty of Education and Arts
School of Education
Numerous studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of reflective journal writing in (second language) teacher education. However, only a few studies have explored pre-service and in-service teachers' own perceptions in this regard, especially in the context of ELT (English Language Teaching). To address this gap, a focus group discussion was conducted among six in-service teachers on the advantages and challenges of the journal writing task in a BA Second Language Teaching Methodology course they had attended. Thematic analysis of the discussion showed that the participants believed writing journals had contributed to their self-awareness, understanding of issues related to ELT, reasoning skills, and dialog with the teacher educator. They also referred to two major challenges in writing journals: necessity of in-depth reading of course materials and full participation in discussions to be able to write quality journals and the tension between their schooling background and the reflective nature of journal writing. Their suggestions for maximizing the effectiveness of journal writing were the teacher educator's more clarification of the nature and goals of journal writing and encouragement of peer feedback.