Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education


Date of this Version

Fall 12-20-2013


Budak, S. (2013). A Collective case study of the nature of form-focused instruction among secondary English as a second language teachers. (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE.


A DISSERTATION Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Major: Educational Studies (Teaching, Curriculum and Learning), Under the Supervision of Professor Jenelle Reeves. Lincoln, Nebraska: December, 2013

Copyright (c) 2013 Sevda Budak


The nature of teaching expertise for form-focused instruction (FFI) in secondary schools has received little research attention. FFI research that has been carried out so far has devoted time in exploring the classification of one form of FFI, or the effectiveness of one form of FFI over another. Given that exploring teaching expertise for FFI in a natural classroom setting is necessary in order to bring out the interplay of factors influencing and prioritized by the teacher in choosing how to proceed instructionally. Furthermore, student experiences of teacher FFI have been largely ignored. Giving voice to student perspectives will help draw the relationship between student grammar learning and teacher teaching.

The purpose of this qualitative research was to explore the display of language teaching expertise for form-focused instruction within the English as a second language context. An instrumental case study design was employed focusing on three ESL teachers’ grammar teaching.

Analysis of multiple sources of data (semi-structured interviews, non-formal conversations, emails, non-participant observations, video recordings of the lessons, and the stimulated recall technique within the follow-up interviews, collection of documents (teacher plans, student work), photographs of the teaching related documents, and surveys) revealed three core themes for each case with various sub-themes. The core themes were: The influencing criteria on the teacher’s decision-making, student as center of teacher thinking, and the dilemmas that the teacher faces. The similarities and the differences across the three cases were discussed within the cross-case analysis. Students’ perspectives of each teacher were discussed within each case. The match and mismatch between the student and teacher perspectives were also provided. Based on the findings that emerged, implications for language teaching and language teacher education are highlighted.

Advisor: Jenelle Reeves