There has been a widespread belief that teachers in Asian contexts including Japan and China are well protected by a tradition that reveres teachers. However, in Chinese contexts, cultural traditions have been found to undermine the teaching profession, together with educational reforms and societal changes. This paper reports on an inquiry that explored the social censure of teachers, especially language teachers in Hong Kong. The inquiry took advantage of an Internet discussion concerning the 'falling' language standards, a widespread concern in the region. The analysis of the discussion revealed the high expectations that the public had for language teachers as well as the increasingly complex conditions for teachers' professional practices due to ongoing educational reforms and cultural changes. The Internet discussion also offers a unique opportunity to examine how the teaching profession was constructed in these discourses and provides insights into teachers' professional vulnerability in Hong Kong. Copyright © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business.
CitationGao, X. (2011). The 'falling' language standards and teachers' professional vulnerability in Hong Kong. Research Papers in Education, 26(4), 485-498.
- The teaching profession
- Professional vulnerability
- Paradox of power
- The Chinese cultural tradition
- Contextual mediation
- Internet-based inquiry