What English Language Teachers Need to Know Volume I: Understanding Learning, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

What English Language Teachers Need to Know Volume I

Understanding Learning, 2nd Edition

By Denise E. Murray, MaryAnn Christison


298 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2019-02-04
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Designed for pre-service teachers and teachers new to the field of ELT, What English Teachers Need to Know Volumes I, II, and III are companion textbooks organized around the key question: What do teachers need to know and be able to do in order for their students to learn English? 

In the Second Edition of Volume I, Murray and Christison return to this essential question and call attention to emerging trends and challenges affecting the contemporary classroom. Addressing new skills and strategies that EFL teachers require to meet the needs of their shifting student populations who are impacted by changing demographics, digital environments, and globalization, this book, which is grounded in current research, offers a strong emphasis on practical applications for classroom teaching.

This updated and expanded Second Edition features:

  • a new chapter on technology in TESOL
  • new and updated classroom examples throughout
  • discussions of how teachers can prepare for contemporary challenges, such as population mobility and globalization

The comprehensive texts work for teachers across different contexts—where English is the dominant language, an official language, or a foreign language; for different levels—elementary/primary, secondary, university, or adult education; and for different learning purposes—general English, workplace English, English for academic purposes, or English for specific purposes.


"This text provides a remarkably broad overview of SLA theory, practice, and professionalism. It is an ideal text for preparing new TESOL professionals in intensive teacher development programs and is welcome as a resource in longer-term programs as well. The concepts are presented clearly, the language is accessible, and the tasks are particularly relevant."

- Mary Benedetti, University of Cincinnati, USA

"Murray and Christison are able to bring a variety of ESL contexts to pre-service teachers using vignettes, discussion, sample data, and description of diverse types of activities and tasks. It is an excellent primer for the uninitiated preservice ESL teacher!"

- Stayc DuBravac, University of Kentucky, USA

"Sure to be a ‘go to’ text, this volume is an updated and expanded version of the first edition.The book analyzes a number of important challenges based on clear presentation of often complex linguistic and pedagogical issues, and features research and practice updates on the (often misunderstood) use of technology by learners and teachers, a wider range of authentic classroom examples addressing real-world teaching challenges, and a more in-depth description of the particular issues facing teachers and teacher educators worldwide at a time when teachers must address both the potential for development and the grave complexities brought about by our connections, mobility and globalization – in English."

- Liz England, Lord Fairfax Community College, USA

Table of Contents


Part 1 Identity and Setting

Chapter 1 Learner Identities

Chapter 2 The World of English

Chapter 3 English Learning around the World

Chapter 4 The Cultural Context

Chapter 5 Learning about Identity and Setting

Part 2 Teacher Language Awareness

Chapter 6 The Sound System

Chapter 7 The System of Words

Chapter 8 The Sentence System

Chapter 9 Beyond the Sentence: Spoken and Written Language

Part 3 Learning

Chapter 10 Theories of Learning

Chapter 11 An Introduction to Second Language Acquisition

Chapter 12 Second Language Acquisition and Second Language Pedagogy

Chapter 13 Learning Theories in the Classroom

Chapter 14: Teaching and Learning Language in a Digital World

Part 4 Professionalism

Chapter 15: Sustaining Professionalism


About the Authors

Denise E. Murray is Professor Emeritus at Macquarie University, Australia, and Professor Emeritus at San José State University, USA.

MaryAnn Christison is a Professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Utah, USA.

About the Series

ESL & Applied Linguistics Professional Series

This series provides essential texts on teaching English as a second language and applied linguistics. It includes authored and edited volumes to be used as primary or supplementary texts in graduate-level and teacher training courses to enhance students’ and practicing teachers’ professional qualifications and knowledge. Each text is designed to promote the current and growing body of knowledge in applied linguistics and second language teaching, including advances in teacher education and the study of language.

Specifically, the series includes, but is not limited to, current uses of applied linguistics research in teaching a variety of second language skills, such as reading, writing, speaking and listening; materials and curriculum design; literacy; English for academic purposes; and research methods.

The texts also deal with broad domains of professional preparation related to socio-cultural perspectives and current issues/topics in teaching and learning a second language.

Books in the series benefit not only students, but experienced teachers, curriculum developers, teacher trainers, program administrators, and other second and foreign language professionals seeking to advance and update their knowledge and expertise.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Bilingual Education
FOREIGN LANGUAGE STUDY / English as a Second Language