Native and Non-Native EFL Teachers Dichotomy: Terminological, Competitiveness and Employment Discrimination
Journal of Language and Education, 2019, 5(3), 114-127. doi: 10.17323/jle.2019.9746
14 Pages Posted: 16 Jan 2020
Date Written: September 30, 2019
The application of ‘native’ and ‘non-native’ labels to EFL professionals has been influenced by the argument over their discriminatory nature. L1 proponents claim that natives are innate with linguistic competence while non-natives are referred to as second-best. A review of studies investigating the coherence of these terms supported the validity of this phenomenon. However, competing theories emphasise the importance and impact of discriminatory terminology not addressed by natives This paper looks at this debate in some detail and aims to balance the need for accurate descriptive labelling against the damaging effects of pejorative categories. It also discusses teaching and linguistic competence in light of both “native” and “non-native” categories. The discourse focuses on the advantages and disadvantages attributed to the native versus non-native EFL teacher and employment discrimination issues faced by non-native EFL teachers in institutions, job advertisements, and in the administration of institutions themselves today. It was concluded that a more refined approach to describing different types of EFL professionals is required, which does not negatively disadvantage either L1 or L2 teachers of English.
Keywords: Native, Non-Native, EFL, Teachers, Discrimination, Challenges
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