My dissertation

Sharing my recent MA dissertation for general interest. I say ‘general interest’, but I imagine the interest will be extremely specific! Here’s the title:

Pronunciation materials in an A2/B1 level British Council Adult General English course in Thailand – do they meet the needs of the learners?

The main reason I chose this topic is because it is applicable to my context and my own learners. I wanted to analyse our current resources and affect some kind of change, if any was needed. Alas, it has had very little impact.

In hindsight, I really regret choosing this topic. I enjoyed a lot of the reading, and the research has informed my own practice. However, I knew there were institutional constraints from the start. The sample size is so limited, it serves only to have an impact on my immediate context and nothing beyond that really. Plus, if I’m honest, there are a billion other topics in ELT I’m more interested in!

I don’t want to completely put you off, but the literature review is sparse, there are assumptions made about the value of the Lingua Franca Core, and some of the questioning methods are leading. Still, ya know, I’m accountable for that – my tutor was great and really pulled this study into line. Alan Pulverness, kudos!

If you find it useful, it’s there!

Categories: General, teacher development

Tags: , , , , ,

5 replies

  1. Thanks for sharing Peter. I’m going to start my Nile MA dissertation later this year so it’s good to see a finished product 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cheers Adi. Best of luck with your dissertation – let me know if you want info about the strengths/weaknesses of this work according to tutors. It might give you an idea of what to aim for. Overall, this got a distinction, although there was certainly room for improvement.

      Have you enjoyed the NILE course so far? Which modules did you do?


      • Thanks Peter – that might be useful. I’ll reach out to you when I am at the outline stage. I did TD and am currently on TEAP. TD was interesting but I’ve had a lot of input on TD because of the projects I was involved in with our mutual employer in India. TEAP on the other hand is challenging but in a good way – it covers a lot of new territory for me. I did consider materials development after reading your post – I might still do it at some point.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Peter

    I’ve just finished my own research project which is not entirely dissimilar to yours and shall therefore read this with great interest. My focus was on coursebooks rather than courses, but I expect a lot of our literature review and ELF criteria was similar.

    I can take a guess what you mean about assumptions, and I don’t necessarily think that these are bad things…in a certain sense one has to make assumptions to really get into this kind of research, which is by definition practical and analytical at the same time.

    I’ll touch base again when I’ve finished reading. Thanks for making it available 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


  1. Book review: Teaching English as a Lingua Franca | ELT Planning

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: