Perceptions of Thai Teachers of English Towards English Medium Instruction: A Case Study of a Local Primary School
Using a case study approach, this study investigated teachers’ perceptions of EMI, the challenges teachers encountered while adopting EMI, and opportunities for EMI in Thai EFL classrooms. The participants were three Thai teachers who used English as a medium of instruction in subjects such as mathematics and science in an intensive English program at a private primary school in the northeastern part of Thailand. Data were obtained from teachers’ journals and semi-structured interviews. The data were transcribed and coded into themes using content analysis. The current study reports the perceptions of Thai EFL teachers and reveals the challenges of EMI in Thai EFL classrooms. As the findings reveal, the participants perceived EMI as an educational advantage, as preparation for the international community and as an approach to enhance students’ speaking confidence. Although EMI offers potential benefits, the study reveals that when teaching, the participants are challenged by students’ language proficiency, classroom size, a lack of teaching materials, teacher’s lack of content knowledge and a lack of support from the school. Moreover, the study suggests some recommendations for pedagogical implication in adopting EMI in Thai EFL classrooms.