Educational Research and Reviews

  • Abbreviation: Educ. Res. Rev.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1990-3839
  • DOI: 10.5897/ERR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 2008

Full Length Research Paper

How Teachers Develop Their Professional Knowledge in English Study Group in Taiwan

Yi-Ching Huang
Yuanpei University of Science and Technology, Taiwan
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 21 February 2007
  •  Published: 30 March 2007



The purpose of this qualitative research was to understand the perceptions of Taiwanese teachers of the effects of a study group on their professional growth in the workplace. This case study employed the following data collection techniques: (1) informal observations and interviews, (2) focus group interview, (3) semi-structured individual interviews and (4) documents and records. The site selected for this study was the National Chia-Yi Girls’ Senior High School in Chia-Yi City in Taiwan. The participants in this study included eight members of the English Teachers Club. Although the focus of this club was offering opportunities for members to practice and improve their English, it functioned as a teacher study group. Specifically, the reported benefits of this professional development activity included: learning English as a foreign language, gaining ideas for improving classroom English instruction, sharing teaching experiences, stimulating positive dispositions to learning, and fostering intellectual development. These benefits, I argue, helped participants to develop content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, fostering ofcontinuing learning, and cognitive/intellectual and theoretical development. The experiences of the teacher study group at Chia-Yi Girls’ Senior High School revealed some of the successes and problems that the teachers experienced as their involvement in a study group evolved.


Key words: Professional development, study group, content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge.