In recent years, much research has shown that the first language (L1) is being used in the majority of foreign language classrooms. However, these findings have often failed to include secondary foreign language teachers and their teaching context. The current mixed-methods study explores Spanish teachers’ use of and beliefs about first and target language usage. A survey was completed by 96 middle and high school Spanish teachers, which included questions related to when the first or target language should be used as well as beliefs about usage. This survey found that teachers report similar reasons for using the L1 as post-secondary teachers; however, they have cited added reasons to use the first language such as exhaustion and fears of losing their program or students. In addition, the respondents demonstrate divided beliefs regarding the appropriate use of the first language in class, thus suggesting disagreement about when the L1 is truly a resource in the foreign language classroom.


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pp. 305-319
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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