Language, identities, and esl pedagogy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The multifaceted ways in which English Language Learners (ELLs) engage in ‘acts of identity’ (Le Page & Tabouret-Keller, 1985) through their language use have created new challenges for ESL pedagogy. Heterogeneous identities have called into question the native speaker construct and the assumed links between ethnicity and language expertise. Drawing on the research of identity theorists along with samples of completed student questionnaires, I argue in this paper that new paradigms are needed in second-language acquisition (SLA) theory, linguistic categorisation of students, and teacher preparation for ESL pedagogy. A pedagogical framework based on Language Identity, Awareness, and Development (LIAD) is proposed as one way of expanding on current language acquisition models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)194-211
Number of pages18
JournalLanguage and Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2005


  • Acts of identity
  • Bilingualism
  • Ell
  • Esl pedagogy
  • Linguistic identities
  • Linguistic minorities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language


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