Reading Time: 2 minutes

Call for Papers

Practitioner Research & Classroom Dynamics: Emic Insights Through a Small Lens

Organisers: Richard Pinner and Sal Consoli

  • AILA 2020 World Congress
  • 09-14 August | Groningen, NL
  • Deadline : 16th September 2019
  • Notification: 18 November 2019
  • Symposium ID: S116

This symposium brings together teachers engaged in research, who can offer valuable insights into their own practices and provide a more nuanced and contextually specific cross-section into their classrooms utilising various methods suited to practitioner-research. These include action research, exploratory practice, evidence-based reflexive practice, and autoethnography.

Download the PDF flyer

Ushioda’s ‘small lens’ approach to researching classroom phenomena was originally intended to focus on motivation with a ‘more sharply focused or contextualised angle of inquiry’ (2016: 566). This can be achieved by utilising various established and emerging practitioner-based research methodologies which utilise a methodical and evidence-based design in order to gain emic insights into the language learning classroom. In this symposium, researchers will utilise a small lens approach to examine a range of psychological and social factors relating to classroom dynamics focusing on both learners and teachers, such as emotions, identity, motivation, autonomy, values and beliefs.

Research done by practitioning teachers is strongly advocated in the literature on complexity paradigm approaches, both within education (Davis and Sumara, 2006) and SLA (Larson-Freeman and Cameron, 2008). As the field of applied linguistics is reshaped by a tendency toward more situated and complexity-informed ways of understanding, insights from practitioner research are also gaining traction. The complex social dynamics that emerge inside specific classrooms are still rare and under-reported within applied linguistics, and this symposium aims to provide a springboard to learn from more emic perspectives from inside language learning classrooms. |Submit Here

email  rpinner[at] for enquiries

Featured Speaker: Richard Sampson

Richard Sampson is an authority on classroom-based practitioner research and complexity thinking. His research has focused on motivation and emotions in the language classroom. His work has featured in journals such as System and Language Teaching Research and he is the author of a monograph dealing with motivation and complexity, as well as currently co-editing a volume on complexity research methods.


Davis, A. B., & Sumara, D. J. (2006). Complexity and education: inquiries into learning, teaching and research. London: Routledge.

Larsen-Freeman, D., & Cameron, L. (2008). Complex systems and applied linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ushioda, E. (2016). Language learning motivation through a small lens: A research agenda. Language Teaching, 49(4), 564-577. doi:10.1017/S0261444816000173

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *