Norwegian in-service teachers’ perspectives on language corpora in teaching English

  • Barry Kavanagh Høgskolen i Innlandet


This study aims to explore potential reasons why the use of the tools and methods of corpus linguistics are not prevalent in English teaching in Norway, using the research question What do in-service English teachers in Norway find useful about corpora and what do they find challenging? The study provides interview data from in-service teachers, contributing to our understanding of the in-service perspective on corpora. The research design consists of teaching corpus use in seminars for in-service English teachers (featuring LancsLex, the concordancer AntConc and the OANC), integrated into a language course that is part of a further education programme, and semi-structured interviews with four of the students who took the course, during which they also interacted with Netspeak, SKELL and COCA. As with previous research, the in-service teachers found corpora particularly useful for teaching and learning vocabulary, and found challenges to use which are categorized here as usability (criticism of AntConc), IT challenges (a lack of IT skills among teachers), learner-corpus interaction challenges (the complexity of software and concordance lines for pupils; pupil uninterest in language), and lack of teacher need (mistakes being “obvious” to teachers in the lower years). The article discusses some implications of these findings.

Keywords: English language teaching, pedagogical corpus application, corpora     




Section A