EFL Teacher Professional Development Needs: Voices from the Periphery

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Marta Isabel Barrientos-Moncada
Natalia Andrea Carvajal-Castaño
Hernán Santiago Aristizabal-Cardona


EFL teachers’ professional development in Colombia has been characterized by top-down policies that neglect the regions in terms of contextualized professional development programs and resources. This article is an effort to make EFL teachers’ needs in the Eastern region of Antioquia, Colombia, visible for academic institutions and local authorities to propose coherent professional development programs. This report is based on a section of the findings of a larger study called “Diagnosis of the needs about plurilingualism in the regions of Antioquia”. Findings show that EFL teachers in the Eastern region claim for ongoing and contextualized professional development programs, differentiated for primary and secondary-school teachers, and focused on instructional material design and adaptation according to the resources available in the local communities. Conclusions from this study outline implications for educational institutions to support teachers in pursuing their professional development within their contexts, methodological limitations for researchers, and possibilities for further research for stakeholders in the territory.

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How to Cite
Barrientos-Moncada, M. I., Carvajal-Castaño, N. A., & Aristizabal-Cardona, H. S. (2023). EFL Teacher Professional Development Needs: Voices from the Periphery. HOW, 30(2), 92–109. https://doi.org/10.19183/how.30.2.761
Research Reports
Author Biographies

Marta Isabel Barrientos-Moncada, Universidad de Antioquia

She is an occasional teacher at the school of languages of Universidad de Antioquia, East Branch. She holds a master’s degree in foreign language teaching and learning. Her areas of interest are: EFL teachers’ PD in Colombia, young learners and EFL teaching and learning in diverse contexts.

Natalia Andrea Carvajal-Castaño, Universidad de Antioquia

She is a last-year foreign language teaching student at Universidad de Antioquia. She is a member of the research seedbed "InterAcción" which is part of the School of Languages of the same university. She is interested in critical thinking, identity, interculturality, and inclusive education.

Hernán Santiago Aristizabal-Cardona, Universidad de Antioquia

He is a teacher/researcher who is a masters candidate for the degree in foreign languages teaching and learning at Universidad de Antioquia. He works as an English teacher. He is interested in multiliteracies pedagogy, critical literacies, critical pedagogies, critical Media literacy, Identity, and peace education.


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