Document Type : Research Paper


English Language and Literature Department, University of Tehran, Iran


Objective: The present study sought to explore EFL teachers’ cognition of rapport establishment and maintenance, as one of the aspects of classroom management, in the context of Iran’s foreign language institutes’ face-to-face EFL classes.
Method: The study involved 12 Iranian teachers who taught adult learners. The sample size was determined based on reaching saturation, and the participating teachers were selected through purposeful sampling. The main instrument utilized in this qualitative study was a semi-structured one-to-one in-person interview, which aimed to elicit the participants’ cognition of rapport development. These individual interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed, and analyzed thematically.
Results: The findings revealed that the participants believed in the importance of rapport creation for efficient classroom management. Besides, they recommended strategies for establishing rapport with learners, such as familiarization, verbal immediacy, non-verbal immediacy, attention to learners’ emotions, judicious L1 use, playing games, and utilizing social media. Moreover, they held that teachers’ personality traits and communication skills could impact their approach to building rapport.
Conclusion: Altogether, the participants had a sound cognition of rapport maintenance as one of the aspects of classroom management. The findings of the current study provide implications for teacher educators, teachers, and institutes’ supervisors.


Main Subjects

Borg, S. (2006). Teacher cognition and language education: Research and practice. Continuum.
Borg, S. (2009). Language teacher cognition. In A. Burns & J. C. Richards (Eds.), The Cambridge Guide to second language teacher education (pp. 163–171). Cambridge University Press.
Borg, S. (2012). Current approaches to language teacher cognition research: A methodological analysis. In R. Barnard & A. Burns (Eds.), Researching language teacher cognition and practice: International case studies (pp. 11–29). Multilingual Matters.
Borg, S. (2019). Language teacher cognition: perspectives and debates. in X. Gao (Ed.), Second handbook of English language teaching (pp. 1–23). Springer.
Borg, S., & Sanchez, H. S. (2020). Cognition and good language teachers. In C. Griffiths & Z. Tajeddin (Eds.), Lessons from good language teachers (pp. 16–27). Cambridge University Press.
Brown, H. D., & Lee, H. (2015). Teaching by principles: An interactive approach to language pedagogy (4th ed.).  Pearson.
Buchanan, H. & Timmis, I. (2019). Classroom management: Art, craft or science?. In S. Walsh, & S. Mann (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of English language teacher education (pp. 319–334).  Routledge.
Creswell, J. W. (2014). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches (4th ed.) SAGE.
Dörnyei, Z. (2007). Research methods in applied linguistics: Oxford University Press.
Evertson, C. M., & Weinstein, C. S. (2011). Classroom management as a field of inquiry. In C. M. Evertson & C. S. Weinstein (Eds.), Handbook of classroom management: Research, practice, and contemporary issues (pp. 3–15). Routledge.
Feryok, A. (2020). Using microgenetic and frame analysis in language teacher cognition research. In R. J. Sampson & R. S. Pinner (Eds.), Complexity perspectives on researching language learner and teacher psychology (pp. 252–268). Multilingual Matters.
Harmer, J. (2007). How to teach English. Essex: Pearson.
Harmer, J. (2012). Essential teacher knowledge: Core concepts in English language teaching. Pearson.
Harmer, J. (2015). The practice of English language teaching (5th ed.). Pearson.
Li, L. (2020). Language teacher cognition: A sociocultural perspective. Palgrave Macmillan.
Norouzi, M. H., & Hassanpour, S. (2022). On the Relationship between Iranian EFL Teachers’ Personality Type and Their Classroom Management Orientation. Journal of English Language Teaching and Learning, 14(30), 230–244.
Rinda, R. K., & Indrastana, N. S. (2020). The crucial elements of classroom management. Journal of English in Academic and Professional Communication, 6(2).
Scrivener, J. (2011). Learning teaching: The essential guide to English language teaching (3rd ed.). Macmillan.
Scrivener, J. (2012). Classroom management techniques. Cambridge University Press.
Song, L., Luo, R., & Zhan, Q. (2022). Toward the role of teacher caring and teacher-student rapport in predicting English as a foreign language learners’ willingness to communicate in second language. Frontiers in Psychology, 13, 1–8.
Spratt, M., Pulverness, A., & Williams, M. (2011). The TKT (Teaching Knowledge Test) course: Modules 1, 2, and 3. Cambridge University Press.
Todorova, R., & Ivanova, I. (2020). Classroom management and good language teachers. In C. Griffiths & Z. Tajeddin (Eds.), Lessons from good language teachers (pp. 133–150). Cambridge University Press.