6. Learner perspectives on the university learning environment 215
6. Learner perspectives on the university learning environment 6.1. Introduction One of the overall purposes of the current study is to explore the pos- sibilities for and constraints on EFL (and TEFL) learner autonomy in the Chinese university EFL context from insider (especially learner) perspectives. Chapter 5 has presented learner perspectives on teacher- student role relationships to examine their possible impact on learner agency and autonomy. This chapter takes a further look at the imme- diate learning-teaching context to examine how learner autonomy might be afforded or constrained through the presentation and analysis of mainly students’ views and attitudes towards contextual factors which might mostly concern their learning and lives in university. In addition, while Chapter 5 has generated insights into the issue of learner readiness for autonomy, the present chapter may provide a chance to explore a concerned issue of teacher and institutional readi- ness for autonomy in the Chinese university EFL context. The chapter addresses the following broad question: What do students say about the university learning environment? The issue of constraints on autonomy and possibilities for the development of autonomy within constraints has been explored in my earlier study (Huang 2006b), drawing on a small part of the data col- lected for the current research, using as a particular case the BAGP writing project for the research participants (the 2002-cohort students). The present chapter takes a broader look at major contextual factors affecting students’ learning in the immediate context. Based on the data, these factors included teachers...
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