The native/non-native teacher debate: insights into variables at play

Language Awareness

Research on language acquisition has long examined the native/non-native English-speaking teacher (NEST/NNEST) debate, particularly in relation to how teachers are perceived. Despite this body of research, the point of view of the parents has been disregarded, as well as the analysis of crucial variables such as students attending extracurricular English classes. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of different variables on students’, parents’, and teachers’ preferences towards NESTs and NNESTs through questionnaires and group discussions. Data was gathered from 507 students, parents, and teachers, who were asked to assess language teachers in four different categories. Results suggest that some variables (i.e., course, extracurricular English classes, type of teacher, gender, and country of origin) influence participants’ preferences for each type of teacher.