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College English Teacher Development in China

A Mixed-method Study

Jiying Han

This study addresses the professional development of college English teachers in mainland China. It is designed to examine the relationship between teachers’ motivation and their attitudinal elements including teacher engagement and commitment, and teaching approaches. This study adopts a mixed-method design that starts with a quantitative phase in which data were collected and analysed to examine the hypothesised predictive power of teachers’ motivation on their engagement, commitment and teaching approaches. In the second phase, qualitative data acquired via semi-structured interviews and documentary analysis were collected to further interpret, explain and elaborate the quantitative results in greater depth. As language teaching has been an often-researched discipline in the teacher motivation literature, this study prompts one to rethink and reflect on the effectiveness of college English curriculum reform and provides implications for current college English teaching and the development of college English teachers.

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The completion of this study would not have been possible without the support of many people, to whom I owe a big debt of gratitude.

My primary and deepest gratitude goes first and foremost to my PhD supervisor Professor Yin Hongbiao for the invaluable and generous contributions he has made over the period of my doctoral study at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). His great encouragement and prompts have constantly inspired me to try harder, and his valuable guidance and insightful comments have always helped my academic progress. I could not have imagined having a better supervisor for my PhD study.

I extend my sincere gratitude to my committee members at CUHK, including Professor Lam Chi Chung for his challenging spirit and helpful suggestions, which brought me to the field of teacher professional development, and Professor Gu Mingyue for her understanding and tenderness, which provided relief from the academic pressure.

Special thanks should go to Professor Wang Junju, Dean of School of Foreign Languages and Literature at Shandong University, my co-supervisor of postdoctoral research. Her expertise on applied linguistics triggered my aspiration to extended knowledge and effort for continued research.

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