“You are contagious”: The role of the facilitator in fostering self-efficacy in learners

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Smith, Anne
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Department of German, University College Cork
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This article argues that improvised role-play can raise learners’ levels of self-efficacy, which in turn increases their likelihood of using language learned beyond the workshop space. It argues that the physicality of the facilitator plays a key role in developing the self-efficacy of learners, using evidence drawn from the study of two Creative English groups with differing outcomes in terms of the use of English beyond the sessions.Creative English is a national, community-based applied theatre programme in the UK, which teaches adult migrants the English they need for everyday situations such as talking to doctors and landlords through drama. It works with those with low levels of English, including those who may have no prior experience of formal education.The article identifies kinaesthetic approaches to facilitating a learner in role, which help to lower the affective filter, and support learner progression in a mixed ability group. It examines the role the body plays in accelerating the creation of a supportive group dynamic, and where it can support and interfere with the likelihood of applying the language and confidence developed in real life.
Smith, A. (2017) '“You are contagious”: The role of the facilitator in fostering self-efficacy in learners', Scenario: A Journal of Performative Teaching, Learning, Research, XI(2), pp. 1-14. https://doi.org/10.33178/scenario.11.2.1