The Contribution of Core Reflection Supervision Through the Onion Model to Iranian EFL Teachers' Professional Development

Document Type : Original Article


Department of foreign languages, Shahreza Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shahreza, Iran


Rooted in the onion model of reflection, the core reflection approach can bring the power of ideals and personal qualities to bear upon teachers' experiences of teaching. This study explored the contribution of the approach to Iranian English language teachers' professional development. Forty general English teachers at the university level attended three supervisory sessions wherein the teachers were coached into reflective practice. Pre/postintervention semistructured interviews, classroom observations, field notes, and reflective journals were used to collect qualitative data. Thematic analysis was used to identify recurring themes at each layer of the model. Further analysis revealed a significant difference between teachers' perceptions and teaching behaviors before and after the supervisory meetings. The results demonstrated that teachers experienced a process of growth with a developmental trajectory from the outer layers to the inner layers of the onion model. As a result of the activation of core qualities through core reflection supervision, teachers developed a sense of identity and mission that had an impact on their environment, behavior, and beliefs in a way that they shifted their attention from their own concerns to their responsibilities and ideals. The findings have important implications for various stakeholders in ELT.


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Volume 14, Issue 2
September 2020
Pages 89-110
  • Receive Date: 01 April 2020
  • Revise Date: 19 September 2020
  • Accept Date: 10 November 2020
  • First Publish Date: 10 November 2020