Who owns ELT? ‘The Halo Effect’ by Nick Michelioudakis

I normally steer clear of my work on this blog, but being a non-native English teacher and currently finding myself in a situation where many employers won’t even consider me for a job because I’m a non-native speaker, makes this issue very close to my heart. It’s not even so much about teaching as it is about issues such as discrimination, misconception and superficiality.

TEFL Equity Advocates

Before you start reading Nick’s post, please watch the video below which explains ‘the halo effect’ Nick refers to in the article, and shows how superficial features shape our opinions about people.

In the EFL world, being a non-Native English Speaker Teacher (NNEST) means you’re Melvin, the short guy.

Nick Michelioudakis “Who owns English? Is it the native speakers (NS) or the non-native ones (NNS)? And who owns ELT? Is it Native English Speaker Teachers (NESTs)s or NNESTs? I would like to argue that in the latter case, we still have a long way to go before we come close to anything resembling a level playing field.

It all boils down to accent of course… It’s such a shibboleth, isn’t it? The problem is its saliency. Research shows that babies as young as 6 months old can detect whether someone is speaking with a foreign accent (and, for good evolutionary…

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2 thoughts on “Who owns ELT? ‘The Halo Effect’ by Nick Michelioudakis”

  1. Thanks fr reblogging 🙂
    I hope you do find a job in the end. Which country are you looking at? Have you tried the BC or IH? They’re usually pretty friendly and open towards NNESTs.

    1. I’m in Germany, in the Ruhr area. I’ve actually interviewed and demoed successfully at Wall Street English, but they hit some bureaucratic barriers with hiring me and were pretty unprofessional about it, but there’s still a chance they’ll hire me if they can get their heads out of their asses, to be quite blunt.
      There’s no IH or BC in my area, unfortunately, but demand is pretty high, especially for Business English, so I’m sure something will come up sooner or later. But discrimination runs rampant.
      Thanks for stopping by! I love reading your blog, and I’m also in the NNEST group you and Chris created on FB.

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