Using a Literature-based Approach in EFL Classes to Achieve ‘The Goals of Korean Education’: Perspectives of Three Native-Speaking English Teachers

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in British and American Language and Literature 118, 349-380. Korea has continuously adapted its educational policy to reflect the immense political, social, economic, and cultural changes in society, yet policy reforms have been slow to reach the classroom. This is evident in the Middle School EFL context where students focus intensely on preparing for tests through teacher-centered instruction, which is at odds with the communicative approach endorsed by curricular policy. While many methods and models have been offered as possible alternatives, this article explores a literature -based approach as a means to enhance middle school English education in Korea. Three native-speaking EFL teachers who have taught in literature-based programs at the middle school level in Korea were interviewed to investigate their experiences and perspectives with this approach. Despite differences in method and context, all teachers confirmed the cognitive, emotional, social, and psychological benefits of a literature-based approach as well as the students’ satisfaction with the course. Using supporting evidence from the interview data, this article aims to define why these capacities are essential to education and how the use of literature harmonizes with the goals of Korea’s educational policy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-380
Number of pages33
JournalStudies in British and American Language and Literature
Publication statusPublished - 2015



  • EFL
  • literature-based approach
  • Korean education
  • policy reform in Korea

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