Research Article 3

Similarities and differences between teachers’ and students’ views on corrective feedback – Korean context

Keehwan Kim

University of Leicester


The aim of this study is to explore the topic of corrective feedback (CF) in an ESL classroom, and more specifically the preferences in oral corrective feedback strategy among native English teachers and Korean university students in Korea. The importance of this study may lie in the potential for a thorough investigation of the potential divergence (or similarities) in the teachers’ and learners’ preference of corrective feedback, and such investigation could lead to strategies that could close the gap, which may lead to more effective learning for the students. The research approach adopted in this dissertation is mixed methods research. A questionnaire survey was conducted in order to gather data on learners’ preferences, and data was gathered on teachers’ use of CF, as well as the underlying beliefs behind their actions through class observations and teacher interviews. The results of the investigation have shown a number of similarities, as well as some differences. Both teachers and learners preferred the use of recasts, on-line corrections and correcting lexical errors. Both also neither preferred the use of metalinguistic feedback. However, learners in the study also favoured explicit correction, and although all of the teachers expressed their dislike of its use, their teaching practice told a different story as it was their second most preferred corrective strategy. Also, learners in the study preferred more varied use of correction timing, though the teachers predominantly used on-line correction. The study also revealed that the teachers’ use of corrective feedback is strongly influenced by the learning objective, and the principles of Communicative Language Teaching (CLT). Also, their decision making is influenced by contextual restrictions, their teaching style, and the needs of different types of learners. While this study has revealed some useful insight on the overall picture, more qualitative research needs to be conducted into the beliefs of learners as this will help to add further clarity to some of the similarities and differences found in this study.

Keywords: Korean education; corrective feedback (CF); language acquisition; communicative language teaching (CLT); English language.