Theorising Textbook Adaptation in English Language Teaching


CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL POLICY STUDIES JOURNAL, vol.12, no.2, pp.169-188, 2022 (Scopus)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 12 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.26529/cepsj.1287
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus, IBZ Online, EBSCO Education Source, ERIC (Education Resources Information Center), Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.169-188
  • Çukurova University Affiliated: Yes


Even though textbooks are a central component of the daily instructional
practice of English language teachers, relatively little research has been
conducted on how teachers actually use (i.e., adapt) textbooks in the class
room. This gap is aggravated by the fact that the terminology proposed in
the literature to analyse teachers’ textbook use is characterised by incon
sistencies because different terms denote the same adaptation techniques,
identical terms refer to different techniques and suggested frameworks
differ in the fact that comparable techniques are allocated to different cat
egories. This inconsistency mirrors the difficulty of operationally defin
ing adaptation techniques, as the terms used may be unambiguous but
vague and therefore of reduced explanatory power or more specific but
potentially unreliable because an adaptation may be matched to different
terms given the complexity of a particular textbook adaptation. Discuss
ing these aspects, this paper proposes a research-informed framework to
contribute to a systematic description of textbook adaptation in foreign
and second language teaching. Examining adaptation as a process, it is
argued that teachers, driven by an identified or felt mismatch between the
textbook and other factors (e.g., school facilities, the learners, teacher cog
nition, course requirements, or outdatedness of the materials), engage in
adaptation based on principles (i.e., ideas about best practices, by making
changes to the content, the language and/or the sequence of activities of
fered by the textbook authors). Even though related to English language
teaching, this paper does not exclusively inform this context as it offers
implications for research on textbook use in other disciplines.
adaptation, adaptation techniques, coursebook, foreign
language teaching, textbook
*Corresponding Author. Faculty of Education, Kahramanmaraş Sütçü İmam University, Turkey;
Faculty of Education, Çukurova University, Adana, Turkey.
doi: 10.26529/cepsj.1287