Common Ground, Contested Territory

Examining the Roles of English Language Teachers in Troubled Times
Mark A. Clarke; Foreword by Diane Larsen-Freeman


This book contains thought-provoking essays on teaching and learning:

  • Who is in charge of lesson plans and of organizing classroom activities?
  • Who places students in classes?
  • Who selects the books and the tests?
  • How are students evaluated, and who determines this?
  • What weight does teacher opinion have in decisions about student progress in school?

Teachers should have the final say in all of these cases, and their opinion should weigh heavily in all of them, yet this is not the reality for today's teachers. Current educational practices driven by a confluence of social and political issues, including testing policies, seem to be influencing teaching and learning more than teachers themselves. The essays in this book consider many serious issues facing today's teachers and urge teachers to seek common ground with others in the field of education. The book also urges teachers to become reflective practitioners, seeing themselves as theorists, philosophers, action researchers, and political activists.

Common Ground, Contested Territory is an inspiring book for all teachers.

Mark A. Clarke is Professor of Literacy and Language Development, University of Colorado at Denver.

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Copyright © 2007, University of Michigan. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • 7 x 10.
  • 232pp.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Paper
  • 2007
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-03213-6

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  • $30.95 U.S.



  • education, curriculum development, narrative, essays, standards, action research, dealing with change, professional development, ecological perspectives on teaching, English language teaching, lesson planning, student placement, assessment, evaluation, student progress, decision-making, reflective teaching, teaching as learning, philosophy of teaching, authenticity, educational policy, classroom interaction, resistance, teacher burnout