Exploring the content-based ESL program: a case of research-conscious pedagogy
A small liberal arts college in the process of developing the curricular framework for a new ESL program with an intensive element provides the setting for this qualitative study. Practicing a research-conscious perspective, the extent to which the content-based approach to English language instruction is pedagogically appropriate for a small program housed at a liberal arts college is discussed. After examining both the theoretical underpinnings of the content-based approach and the application of content-based instruction in selected college settings, the adoption of a content-based approach for a small program focused on preparing non-native speakers of English for continued academic study at the university level is considered. Throughout the discussion, this study also seeks to emphasize the importance of thoughtful consideration of curricular decisions from a balanced perspective of theory and practice.