An important issue in the thinking of teachers in many second and foreign language classrooms, although often implicit, is the issue of who is going to do what — how much of the responsibility and the decision-making and work is going to be done by the teacher, and how much is going to be done by the learners? The language teaching literature also reflects this concern: the movement to learner autonomy (Benson, 2001; Riley, 1988) and learner training (O’Malley and Chamot, 1990; Wenden and Rubin, 1987) is based on the idea that it is beneficial to teach learners to take more responsibility for their own language learning. Allwright’s concept of the ‘management of language learning’ (Allwright, 1984) was originally developed with reference to this issue. When the question stated in the title of this piece — ‘who does what?’ — is examined closely, it begins to become clear that it is not in principle answerable. The process of deciding appears more and more as a dynamically evolving interaction, with constantly changing rules. More appropriate questions might be: Who is expected to do what, and what happens to and results from such expectations as language classes proceed? How does the negotiation of who is supposed to do what evolve? What are the factors and constraints that affect the process of negotiation?

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Keywords Language Learning, Language Acquisition, Language Teaching, Teacher Cognition, Learner Teacher
ISBN 978-0-230-20695-3
Persistent URL
Woods, D. (2005). Who does what in the 'management of language learning'? Planning and the social construction of the 'motivation to notice'. In Understanding the Language Classroom (pp. 88–114). doi:10.1057/9780230523166