The Effect of Timely Interference of English Language Teachers on the Improvement of Learners' Oral Performance

Ibrahim Mohammed Al-Faki, Ahmed Gumaa Siddiek


Corrective feedback or error correction techniques are two terms interchangeably used to mean the interfering of language teachers to correct errors committed by their students. The issue has been controversially debated over the time. Many teachers support the view of immediate interference to correct learners' error. These are the old disciples of teacher-based theory in education, while others  defend the idea of student-centered education. This paper aims to pool the efforts of both schools; but the researchers prefer the timely interference of the instructor to correct his/her student’s error. The researchers  believe that, this may be the practical way to modify learners' oral language errors. The word timely should be relatively understood to simply mean that teachers should decide the well-timed moment to get involved in the learning process. The teacher is the master of the place and time of the whole teaching environment, so s/he will have to soundly judge their interference by considering: 1. The vitality of the text  2. The degree of the criticality of the context. 3.The sound calculation of the possibility of loss OR gain if the interference is not well-timed.



Corrective error, feedback, teacher interference, ELT

Full Text:



Alvarez Sanchez, A. (1982). Are we correcting or “Killing” our Students? English Teaching Forum, xx (3), 43-44.

Ammar, A., &Spada, N. (2006). One size fits all? Recasts, prompts and L2 learning. Studies Second Language Acquisition, 28, 543-574.

Ancker, W. (2000). Errors and Corrective Feedback: Updated Theory and Classroom Practice. English Teaching Forum, 38 (4), 20-25.

Askew, S. (2000). Feedback for Learning. London: Routledge.

Askew, S. & Lodge, C. (2000). Gifts, ping-pong and loops-linking feedback and learning. In Askew, S. (Ed.). Feedback for Learning. London: Routledge

Barkhuizen, G. (1998). Discovering learners‟ perceptions of ESL classroom teaching/learning activities in South African context. TESOL Quarterly, 32 (1), 23- 40.

Basturkmen, H., Loewen, S., & Ellis, R. (2004). Teachers‟ stated beliefs about incidental focus on form and their classroom practices. Applied Linguistics, 25(2), 243-272.

Birdsong, D. (2006). Age and second language acquisition and processing: A selective overview. Language Learning, 56, 9 – 49.

Block, D. (1996). Window on the classroom: classroom events viewed from different angles, in Bailey &Nunan: 168 – 194.

Borg, S. (1999). Teachers‟ theories in grammar teaching. English Language Teaching Journal, 53(3), 157-167.

Braidi, S. (2002). Reexamining the role of recasts in native speaker/nonnative-speaker interactions. Language Learning, 52(1), 1–42.

Breen, M., Hird, B., Milton, M., Oliver, R., &Thwaite, A. (2001). Making sense of language teaching: Teachers‟ principles and classroom practices. Applied Linguistics, 22 (4), 470-501.

Brown, H. (2001). Teaching by principles. New York: Pearson Education Company.

Burns, A. (1992). Teacher beliefs and their influence on classroom practice. Prospect, 7 (3), 55-66.

Burt, M. K. (1975). Error analysis in the adult EFL classroom. TESOL Quarterly, 9, 1, 53-63.

Cameron, L. (2001). Teaching Languages to Young Learners. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Carroll, S. & Swain, M. (1993). Explicit and implicit negative feedback: An empirical study of the learning of linguistic generalizations. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 15(3), 357-386.

Cathcart, R., & Olsen J. (1976). Teachers‟ and students‟ preferences for correction of classroom conversation errors. TESOL, 76, 41-45.

Chambers, G. (1999). Motivating Language Learners. Great Britain. WBC Book Manufacturers Ltd.

Chaudron, C. (1977). A descriptive model of discourse in the correctional treatment of learners‟ errors. Language Learning, 27, 29-46.

Cohen, V. (1985). A reexamination of feedback in computer-based instruction: Implications for instructional design. Educational Technology, 25(1), 33-37.

Corder, S. (1967). The significance of learners' errors. International Review of Applied Linguistics, 4, 161-170.

Coulthard, M. (1992). Advances in Spoken Discourse Analysis. London: Routledge.

Dempsey, J. V., Driscoll, M. P., &Swindell, L. K. (1993). Text-based feedback. In J. V. Dempsey & G. C. Sales (Eds.), Interactive instruction and feedback (pp. 21-54). Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Educational Technology Publications.

Diab, R. (2006). Error correction and feedback in the EFL writing classroom: Comparing instructor and student preferences. English Teaching Forum, 44(1), 2-13.

Doughty, C., & Varela, E. (1998). Communicative focus on form. In C. Doughty & J. Williams (Eds.), Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition (pp. 114-138). New York: Cambridge University Press.

ElTatawy, M. (2002). Corrective feedback in second language acquisition. Teachers‟ College, Columbia University, 1-19.

Ellis, R. (1993). Second language acquisition and the structural syllabus. TESOL Quarterly, 27, 91-113.

Fang, Z. (1996). A review of research on teacher beliefs and practices. Educational Research, 38(1), 47-65.

Fanselow, J. (1977). Beyond Rashomon: Conceptualizing and observing the teaching act. TESOL Quarterly, 11(1), 17-41.

Farrar, M. J. (1992). Negative evidence and grammatical morpheme acquisition. Developmental Psychology, 28, 90-98.

Gass, S. M. (1988a). Second language vocabulary acquisition. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 9, 92-106.

Gattullo, F. (2000). Corrective Feedback and Teaching Style: Exploring a relationship. In Moon and Nikolov (eds.). Researching into English Teaching for Young Learners. Pecs: University of Pecs Press, 295-311.

Green, J. and Oxford, R. (1995). A closer look at learning strategies, L2 proficiency, and gender. TESOL Quarterly, 29, 261-297.

Hadley, A. (2003). Teaching language in context. 3rd ed., Heinle&Heinle Publishers.

Hamp-Lyons, L. and Heasley, B. (1987). Study Writing: A course in written English for academic and professional purposes. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Han, Z. (2002a). Rethinking the role of corrective feedback in communicative language teaching. RELC Journal, 33(1), 1-33.

Harmer, J. (1991). The Practice of English Language Teaching. Harlow: Longman.

Havranek, G. and Cesnik, H. (2001). Factors Affecting the Success of Corrective Feedback. EUROSLA yearbook, 1, 99–122.

Hendrickson, J. (1978). Error correction in foreign language teaching: Recent theory, research, and practice. Modern Language Journal, 62, 387-398.

Iwashita, N. (2003). Negative feedback and positive evidence in task-based interaction: Differential effects on L2 development. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 25, 1-36.

Horwitz, E. (1988). The beliefs about language learning of beginning university foreign language students. The Modern Language Journal, 72, 283–294.

Kagan, D. (1992). Implications of research on teacher belief. Educational Psychologist, 27(1), 65-90.

Karavas-Doukas, E. (1996). Using attitude scales to investigate teachers' attitudes to the communicative approach. English Language Teaching Journal, 50(3), 187-198.

Kartchava, E. (2006). Corrective Feedback: Novice ESL Teachers' Beliefs and Practices. A Thesis in the Department of Education TESL Centre. Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts (Applied Linguistics) at Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. March (2006), 1-125.

Katayama, A. (2006). Perceptions of JFL students toward correction of oral errors. In Bradford-Watts, K., Ikeguchi, C., & Swanson, M. (Eds.) JALT2005 Conference Proceedings, Tokyo: JALT, 1248-1264.

Kern, R. (1995). Students’ and teachers’ beliefs about language learning. Foreign Language Annals, 28(1), 71-92.

Krashen, S. (1982). Principles and Practice in Second Language Acquisition. Oxford: Pergamon.

Kumaravadivelu, B. (1991). Language learning tasks: Teacher intention and learner interpretation. ELT Journal, 45 (2), 98-102.

Lasagabaster, D., & Sierra, J. (2005). Error correction: Students' versus teachers' perceptions. Language Awareness, 14(2–3), 112–127.

Leeman, J. (2003). Recasts and second language development: Beyond negative evidence. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 25(1), 37–63.

Lewis, M. (2002). Giving Feedback in Language Classes. Singapore: SEAMEO Regional Language Center.

Lightbown, P. &Spada, N. (1999). How Languages are Learned. Oxford. Oxford University Press.

Lin, H. (2009). Patterns of Corrective Feedback and Learner Uptake in ESL Low, Intermediate, and Advanced Level Speaking Classrooms (PHD Dissertation). Alliant International University, San Diego.

Littelwood, W. (1981). Communication Language Teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Loewen, S. (2004). Uptake in Incidental Focus on form in Meaning-Focused ESL Lessons. Language Learning, 54 (1), 153-188.

Loewen, S. (2005). Incidental Focus-on-form and Second Language Learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 27, 361-386.

Long, M. (1977). Teacher feedback on learner error: mapping cognitions. In Brown, H. D., Yorio, C. A., &Crymes, R. (eds.), On TESOL '77. Teaching and learning English as a Second Language: Trends in research and practice, 278-294.

Lynch, T. (1996). Communication in the Language classroom. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lyster, R. &Ranta, L. (1997). Corrective feedback and learner uptake: Negotiation of form in communicative classrooms. Studies in Second Language Acquisition. 19, 37-66.

Macbeath, J. &Mortimore, P. (2001). Improving school effectiveness. Philadelphia: Open University Press.

Mackey, A., &Philp, J. (1998). Conversational interaction and second language development: Recast responses, and red herring? Modern Language Journal, 82,338-356.

McCargar, D. (1993). Teacher and student role expectations: Cross-cultural differences and implications. The Modern Language Journal, 77(2), 192-207.

McDevitt, D. (1989). How to Cope with Spaghetti Writing. English Language Teaching Journal, 43(1), 19-23.

McNamara, E. (1999). Positive Pupil Management and Motivation: A secondary teacher’s guide. London: David Fulton Publishers.

Mendez, E., Arguelles, L. & Castro, A. (2010). Oral Corrective Feedback: Some Ways to Go About it. FEL International, 33(1), 254-270.

Morris, F., &Tarone, E. (2003). Impact of classroom dynamics on the effectiveness of recasts in second language acquisition. Language Learning, 53, 325-368.

Murphy, D. (1986). Communication and Correction in the Classroom. English Language Teaching Journal, 40(2), 141-151.

Nabei, T., & Swain, M. (2002). Learner awareness of recasts in classroom interaction: A case study of an adult EFL student's second language learning. Language Awareness, 11, 43-63.

Nassaji, H. & Swain, M. (2000). A Vygotskian Perspective on Corrective Feedback in L2: The effect of random versus negotiated help on the learning of English articles. Language Awareness, 9(1), 34-49.

Nelson, K. E., Denninger, M., Bonvillian, J. D., Kaplan, B., & Baker, N. (1984). Maternal input adjustments and non-adjustments as related to children's advances and to language acquisition theories. In A. D. Pellegrini& T. D. Yawkey (Eds.), The development of oral and written language in social contexts(pp. 31-56). Norwood, NJ: Ablex.

Nicholas, H., Lightbown, P. M., &Spada, N. (2001). Recasts as feedback to language learners. Language Learning, 51, 719-758.

Nunan, D. (1987). Communicative language teaching: The learner‟s view. In Bikram, K. (Ed.), Communication and learning in the classroom community, (pp. 176-190). Singapore: SEAMEO Regional Language Centre.

Ohta, A. S. (2001). Second language acquisition processes in the classroom: Learning Japanese. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Oladejo, J. (1993). Error correction in ESL: Learners‟ preference. TESL Canada Journal, 10(2), 71-89.

Oliver, R. (1995). Negative feedback in child NS-NNS conversation. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 17, 459-481.

Panova, I., &Lyster, R. (2002). Patterns of corrective feedback and uptake in an adult ESL classroom. TESOL Quarterly, 36(4), 573-595.

Perrott, E. (1982). Effective Teaching: a practical guide to improving your teaching. Harlow: Longman.

Philp, J. (2003). Constraints on 'noticing the gap': Normative speakers' noticing of recasts in NS-NNS interaction. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 25, 99-126.

Richards, J & Lockhart, C. (1994). Reflective Teaching in Second Language Classrooms. Cambridge. Cambridge Language Education.

Richardson, V., Anders, P., Tidwell, D., & Lloyd, C. (1991). The relationship between teachers‟ beliefs and practices in reading comprehension instructions. American Educational Research Journal, 28(3), 559-586.

Rudduck, J. (1991). Innovation and change. Milton Keynes, England: Open University Press.

Russell, J. &Spada, N. (2006). The effectiveness of corrective feedback for the acquisition of grammar: A meta-analysis of research .Amsterdam. John Benjamins Publishing.

Rutherford, W. (1987). Second language grammar: learning and teaching. London: Longman

Sales, G. (1993). Adapted and adaptive feedback in technology-based instruction. In Dempsey, J & Sales, G (Eds.), Interactive instruction and feedback (pp. 159-175). Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Educational Technology Publications.

Schachter, J. (1991). Corrective feedback in historical perspective. Second Language Research, 7, 89-102.

Schulz, R. (1996). Focus on form in the foreign language classroom: students’ and teachers’ views on error correction and the role of grammar. Foreign Language Annals, 29 (3), 343-364.

Sheen, Y. (2004). Corrective feedback and learner uptake in communicative classrooms across instructional settings. Language Teaching Research, 8, 263–300.

Sinclair, J. & Brazil, D. (1982). Teacher Talk. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Smith, H. (2010). Correct Me if I'm Wrong: Investigating the Preferences in Error Correction Among Adult English Language Learners. (MA thesis 2010). University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida.

Tabatabaei, O. &Banitalebi, A. (2011). Feedback Strategies in Foreign Language Reading Classes. Asian Culture and History, 3(2), 59-70.

Thornberry, S. (1996). Teachers Research Teacher Talk. English Language Teaching Journal, 50(4), 279-289.

Tsui, A. (1995). Introducing Classroom Interaction. London: Penguin.

Ur, P. (1996). A Course in Language Teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

White, L. (1993). Adverb placement in second language acquisition: Some positive and negative evidence in the classroom. Second Language Research, 7, 122-161.

Wragg, E. & Brown, G. (1993). Exploring. New York. Routledge.

Yoshida, R. (2008). Teachers’ choice and learners’ preference of corrective feedback types. Language Awareness, 17(1), 78-93.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

2012-2023 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD

International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the journal emails into your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.