Authenticity and Teacher-Student Motivational Synergy: A Narrative of Language Teaching, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Authenticity and Teacher-Student Motivational Synergy

A Narrative of Language Teaching, 1st Edition

By Richard Pinner


360 pages | 86 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Hardback: 9780815395188
pub: 2019-07-04
Available for pre-order

FREE Standard Shipping!


Despite the common association between authenticity and motivation in language learning, there does not currently exist a single volume exploring these connections. This book looks at the relationship between authenticity and motivation by specifically viewing the process of mutually validating the act of learning as social authentication, which in turn can often lead to positive motivational synergy between students and teacher(s). The study at the centre of this book uses autoethnography and practitioner research to examine the complex relationship between authenticity and motivation in the foreign language learning classroom. In particular, it traces the links between student and teacher motivation, and proposes that authenticity can act as a bridge to connect learners to the classroom environment and engage with the activity of learning.


'This second book from Richard Pinner explores the synergy between two concepts traditionally associated with language learning: motivation and authenticity. Combining a unique theoretical perspective with practical ideas for language practitioners, Pinner here firmly establishes himself as ‘one to watch’ in this field.' Dr Freda Mishan, University of Limerick, Ireland

'This book offers a fascinating insight into the dynamic evolving relationship between teacher motivation and student motivation in the classroom. Through a rich illustrated reflexive narrative of his exploratory practice as a teacher of English at a Japanese university, Richard Pinner discusses how the motivational synergy between teacher and students is bound up with the classroom community’s experience of ‘social authentication’—i.e. the affective sense of social connectedness and shared investment in the teaching–learning process. The book will be valuable reading for researchers, teachers and teacher-researchers interested in understanding or exploring the social dynamics of classroom motivation.' — Professor Ema Ushioda, Director, Centre for Applied Linguistics, University of Warwick

'Despite recognition of its importance, few empirical studies have been able to convincingly portray the vitally interconnected and emergent nature of teacher and learner motivation. In this enlightening book, Richard Pinner does just this, from an insider perspective. The book relates his experiences as he works as a practitioner-researcher to understand and replicate conditions in a particularly vibrant and meaningful class that he taught in the past. This is a deeply reflective account of Pinner’s classroom research, combining autoethnography with exploratory practice as he seeks to understand both himself and his learners more profoundly. The book grounds numerous useful ideas developed through the research, such as a socially-constructed sense of shared positive energy known as motivational synergy, in the narrative of the author’s emerging identity as a classroom practitioner. It also draws strong parallels with Ushioda’s (2009) person-in-context relational view of motivation, arguing convincingly that authenticity in the classroom ought to be reconceptualized as a process whereby teachers and learners socially validate language use. For me, the most intriguing aspect was simply the capacity of the book to allow the reader to enter not only Pinner’s classroom, but also his thinking, over a year of teaching.' — Richard Sampson, Associate Professor, University Education Centre, Gunma University, Japan

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. The Theoretical Framework: Stepping Stones

3. Research Methods: The Evolution of my Design

4. Spring Semester 2014

5. Autumn Semester 2014-15

6. Bridging the Gap: Synergies into Praxis

7. Vignettes

8. Conclusions

9. Afterword

About the Author

Richard Pinner is a language teacher and associate professor at Sophia University in Tokyo. He holds a PhD in ELT and Applied Linguistics and has published several articles on language teaching, most recently in Language Teaching Research, English Today and Applied Linguistics Review.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Teaching Methods & Materials / Language Arts
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General