Recruiting wisely from the available supply of teachers is one of the instructional roles of school administrators. Their hiring and retaining decisions, among other things, can influence learners' achievements. The number of studies examining the features of effective language teachers in the eyes of administrators is limited. Therefore, the present study was designed to examine how effective language teachers are perceived by administrators of English Private Language Institutes in Iran. To this end, 27 male and female administrators were selected and interviewed. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the narrative data. The results of coding revealed several characteristics of effective language teachers, which were categorized and grouped under seven themes: teacher’s appearance, personal traits, business-related traits, love of the profession, professional competence, work experience, and interpersonal relationship. The perceptions of this group of stakeholders were then compared and contrasted with the features mentioned in the literature and interpreted in view of the commercialization of education. The study concluded that the administrators gave lower priority to learning outcomes and educational concerns. For the administrators, teachers’ appearance and their traits are more important than some job-related features. These features are assumed to be closely related to the third dominant theme of business-related characteristics. The results, overall, might reflect the teachers' obligation to adjust their practices to the administrators' expectations, which are, in turn, influenced by the primacy of commercial interests over learning and teaching interests. The findings of the study may have implications for teacher educators, teaching candidates and working teachers.


Effective Language Teachers, Language Institution’s Administrator, Perception, Thematic Analysis

Author Bio(s)

Negar Yazdanipour received her MA in TEFL at Sheikhbahaee University in 2018. Please direct correspondence to yazdanpour.negar@yahoo.com.

Mehrnoosh Fakharzadeh is an Assistant Professor of Applied Linguistics at Sheikhbahaee University, Isfahan, Iran. She teaches BA and MA courses in TEFL and translation studies. Her areas of interest include reception studies, Information literacy, quantitative translation studies, AVT, and lexicology. She has published articles in national as well as international journals, such as 3L, IJAL, The Journal of Persian Language and Literature, and Language and Translation Studies. She has also translated books into Persian, such as Foundations of Mixed Methods Research. Please direct correspondence to mehrnooshana@gmail.com.

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