A Task-based Teacher Development Program in a Rural Public School in Colombia

Main Article Content

Claudia Camila Coronado Rodríguez
Luisa Fernanda Aguilar Peña
María Fernanda Jaime-Osorio


This document reports on a research study carried out in a rural public school in Colombia. The aim of the study was to identify the impact of a task-based teacher development program on three primary school teachers’ teaching practices. To this effect, we used a survey, classroom observations, and semi-structured interviews before and after the implementation of the development program. We identified that teachers' perceptions, beliefs, and realities in their teaching practice influenced their performance, inside and outside the classroom. The results also showed that participants improved their teaching practices regarding the processes of lesson planning and materials design. They also improved their English language performance regarding pronunciation and vocabulary use.

Article Details

How to Cite
Coronado-RodríguezC. C., Aguilar-PeñaL. F., & Jaime-OsorioM. F. (2022). A Task-based Teacher Development Program in a Rural Public School in Colombia. HOW Journal, 29(1), 64-83. https://doi.org/10.19183/how.29.1.640
Research Reports
Author Biographies

Claudia Camila Coronado Rodríguez, Universidad Surcolombiana

She holds a B.A. in English Language and an M.A in English Language Teaching from Universidad Surcolombiana, Colombia. She is currently a full-time English Language professor at the School of Languages at Universidad Santo Tomas in Villavicencio.

Luisa Fernanda Aguilar Peña, Universidad Surcolombiana

She holds a BA in English Language from Universidad de la Amazonia, Colombia and an MA in English Language Teaching from Universidad Surcolombiana, Colombia. She is currently an English teacher at San Marcos School in Acevedo, Huila.

María Fernanda Jaime-Osorio, Universidad Surcolombiana

She is a full-time professor at Universidad Surcolombiana. She holds an M.A. in Teaching English as a Foreign Language from Universidad Internacional Iberoamericana. She is the director of the research group ILESEARCH. She is currently the chair of the EFL program at Universidad Surcolombiana in Neiva.


Allport, G. (1935). Attitudes. In C. Murchison (Ed.), Handbook of social psychology (pp. 798–844). Clark University Press.
Bachman, L. F. (1990). Fundamental considerations in language testing. Oxford University Press.
Bonilla-Medina S., & Cruz-Arcila, F. (2013). Sociocultural factors involved in the teaching of English as foreign language in rural areas of Colombia: an analysis of the impact on teachers’ professional development. Research in Teacher Education, 3(2), 28–33.
Bonilla, S., & Cruz-Arcila, F. (2014). Critical Socio-Cultural Elements of the Intercultural Endeavour of English Teaching in Colombian Rural Areas. Profile: Issues in Teachers´ Professional Development, 16, 117-133. https://doi.org/10.15446/profile.v16n2.40423
Buitrago Campo, A. C. (2016). Improving 10th graders’ English communicative competence through the implementation of the task-based learning approach. Profile: Issues in Teachers’ Professional Development, 18(2), 95-110. http://dx.doi.org/10.15446/profile.v18n2.48272
Buitrago, L. (2017). El inglés en la zona rural de Colombia: aplicación del modelo Working with people, del método Content-based y de los ambientes de aprendizaje en la clase de lengua extranjera en Subia, Cundinamarca. [Bachelor dissertation, Pontifical Xavierian University] PXU Campus Repository. https://repository.javeriana.edu.co/handle/10554/35431
Cárdenas, M., González, A., & Álvarez, J. (2010). El desarrollo profesional de los docentes de inglés en ejercicio: algunas consideraciones conceptuales para Colombia. Folios, 31, 49-67. https://doi.org/10.17227/01234870.31folios49.67
Córdoba Zúñiga, E. (2016). Implementing task-based language teaching to integrate language skills in an EFL program at a Colombian university. Profile: Issues in Teachers’ Professional Development, 18(2), 13-27. http://dx.doi.org/10.15446/profile.v18n2.49754
Creswell, J. W. (2012). Educational Research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research (4th ed.). Pearson.
Cruz Arcila, F. (2018). The wisdom of teachers’ personal theories: Creative ELT practices from Colombian rural schools. Profile: Issues in Teachers´ Professional Development, 20(2), 65-78. https://doi.org/10.15446/profile.v20n2.67142
Delgado, M. (2014). La educación básica y media en Colombia: retos en equidad y calidad. Bogotá, Colombia. Centro de Investigación económica y social. Research study. [Primary and Secondary Education in Colombia, challenges of equality and quality. Bogotá, Colombia. Center of economic and social research, 2014.]
Freeman, D. (1989). Teacher training, development, and decision making: A model of teaching and related strategies for language teacher education. TESOL Quarterly, 23(1), 27. https://doi.org/10.2307/3587506
Gerlach, J. M. (1994). "Is this collaboration?" In K. Bosworth & S. J. Hamilton (Eds.), Collaborative Learning: Underlying Processes and Effective Techniques, New Directions for Teaching and Learning. No. 59.
Instituto Colombiano para la Evaluación de la Educación (ICFES). (2018). National report of the examination of results Saber 11º [PDF file]. https://www.icfes.gov.co/documents/20143/1711757/Informe%20nacional%20resultados%20examen%20saber%2011-%202018.pdf
Kemmis, S., & McTaggart, R. (1988). Action research model. Retrieved from https://www.scribd.com/doc/232329702/Action-Research-Model-by-Kemmis-and-Mctaggart
Kolb, D. (1984). Experiential learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Prentice Hall.
Malderez, A., & Bodóczky, C. (1999). Mentor courses: A resource book for trainer-trainers. Cambridge University Press
Ministry of National Education. (1994). Ley General de Educación. Colombia. https://www.mineducacion.gov.co/1621/articles-85906_archivo_pdf.pdf
Ministry of National Education. (2004). National Program of Bilingual Education. Colombia. https://www.mineducacion.gov.co/1621/articles-132560_recurso_pdf_programa_nacional_bilinguismo.pdf
Ministry of National Education. (2006). Basic Standards of Competences in Foreign Languages: English. https://aprende.colombiaaprende.edu.co/sites/default/files/naspublic/Anexo%2015%20Pedagogical%20Principles%20and%20Guidelines.pdf
Mutiarani, M., & Izzah, L. (2015). The power of storytelling in teaching English to young learners. Universitas Muhammadiyah Jakarta. pp. 70-81. https://doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.2.12171.03362
National Administrative Department of Statistics (DANE). (2018). Distribución de población por ubicación. https://www.dane.gov.co/index.php/estadisticas-por-tema/demografia-y-poblacion/censo-nacional-de-poblacion-y-vivenda-2018/donde-estamos
Núñez, A., Téllez, M. F., & Castellanos, J. (2013). Proposal for the research line materials development and didactics ascribed to the research group: Critical pedagogy and didactics for social transformation [Unpublished manuscript, School of Education]. Universidad Externado de Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). (2016). Education in Colombia [PDF file]. http://www.oecd.org/education/school/Education-in-Colombia-Highlights.pdf
Pathak, V., Jena, B., & Kalra, S. (2013). Qualitative research. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3757586/
Pan, Y. (2010). The use of L1 in the foreign language classroom. Colombian Applied Linguistics, 12(2), 87-96.
Peña, M., & Onatra, A. (2009). Promoting oral production through the task-based learning approach: A study in a public secondary school in Colombia. Profile: Issues in Teachers´ Professional Development, 11(2), 11-26.
Perfetti, M. (2003). Estudio sobre la educación para la población rural en Colombia. In Food and Agriculture Organization, Educación para la población Rural en Brasil, Chile, Colombia, Honduras, México, Paraguay y Perú. (pp. 164-216). FAO.
Pérez, E. (2001). Hacia una nueva visión de lo rural. In N. Giarracca (Comp.), Una nueva ruralidad en América Latina en Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo (PNUD). Colombia rural. Razones para la esperanza. Informe Nacional de Desarrollo Humano. Bogotá.
Ramos Holguín, B., & Aguirre Morales, J. (2016). English language teaching in rural areas: A new challenge for English language teachers in Colombia. Cuadernos de Lingüística Hispánica, 27, 209-222.
Richards, J. C., & Farrell, T. S. (2005). Professional development for language teachers (1st ed.). Cambridge University Press.
Richards, J. C., & Rodgers, T. S. (2001). Approaches and methods in language teaching. Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511667305
Riel, M. (2019). Understanding collaborative action research. https://base.socioeco.org/docs/center_for_collaborative_action_research.pdf
Roldán, A. M., & Peláez, Ó. (2017). Pertinencia de las políticas de enseñanza del inglés en una zona rural de Colombia: un estudio de caso en Antioquia. Íkala. Revista de Lenguaje y Cultura, 22(1), 121-139.
Sánchez, A. (2004). The task-based approach in language teaching. International Journal of English Studies IJES, 4, 39-71. University of Murcia. https://doi.org/10.6018/ijes.4.1.48051
Sánchez, A. C., & Obando, G. V. (2008). Is Colombia Ready for “Bilingualism”?. Profile: Issues in Teachers’ Professional Development, 9(1), 181-195.
Syah, R. (2013). Translation techniques used in lazy daze in the very best of Donald duck comics 7th bilingual edition [Unpublished B. Ed. degree dissertation]. Faculty of Humanities, Dian Nuswantoro University. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/35373824.pdf
Willis, J. (1996). A framework for task-based learning. Pearson P T R.
Yates, L. (2002). Fact sheet - What is pronunciation? Adult Migrant Program Research Centre. La Trobe University. (pp. 1-8) http://www.ameprc.mq.edu.au/docs/fact_sheets/01Pronunciation.pdf
Zakime, A. (2018). What is task-based learning? [webpage] https://www.whatiselt.com/single-post/2018/01/19/What-is-Task-based-learning