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Shaping TESOL Research Priorities 2023-2027

by Jessie Curtis |

This blog is part of the TESOL Research Professional Council (RPC) Blog series

TESOL International Association’s professional councils support the association’s objectives with professional knowledge and advice. One of seven professional councils, the Research Professional Council  (RPC) focuses on research by identifying priorities, promoting collaboration, fostering inquiry, and building expertise. 

Research Priorities Survey Report 2023

As part of this role, with the help of TESOL members, the RPC is engaged in an initiative to update TESOL’s research priorities for 2023-2027.

Continuing the inquiry about research priorities begun at the Research Agenda Fair (2021), in 2022 we disseminated a short survey that asked members to identify their top three research topics, contexts, and challenges. We are excited to share the analysis of the survey findings, presented in the Research Priorities Survey Report 2023, and now invite your feedback. First, here is a summary of themes in the data.

Themes in the Data

Scott Douglas of the RPC said that “demographic data point to respondents coming from a wide range of backgrounds, with a majority distributed geographically across the globe,” beyond North America.

  • Key research priorities underscore the importance of teaching methods, teacher development, and educational technology as broad topic areas warranting future research.
  • Contexts to prioritize include specific educational contexts, geographic locations, and learner groups.
  • The top challenges to carrying out research include putting together an effective research design, finding funding, and balancing a busy workload.
  • Finally, when asked what else respondents wanted to add, key themes were related to recommendations, dissemination, and contexts. These included recommendations build the knowledge base related to research in TESOL; make connections between teachers and researchers; create platforms for practitioner-friendly knowledge; and generate more research outside of North America.

How to Participate

With the aim of including as many perspectives as possible, we invite your feedback on interpreting these major themes in your local teaching and learning contexts.

We look forward to hearing from you!

See other posts in the TESOL Research Professional Council (RPC) Blog series.

About the author

Jessie Curtis

Jessie Hutchison Curtis has taught language arts and EAL in middle school, adult, and community-based language programs, and programs for international college students. Her teaching experience includes preparing pre- and in-service teachers to work with multilingual learners. Currently she works with international postgraduates at Rutgers University to support their research and writing. Her research aims to contribute to achieving equity in education, and her published research includes a chapter in Preparing Teachers to Work with Multilingual Learners (2021). Currently, she is busy guest editing a forthcoming JLIE special issue that focuses on Critical Language Awareness in Multilingual Contexts.

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