English learning lived experiences of Chinese student newcomers in a Canadian postsecondary EAP programme: The role of gender
Gender roles are still strictly defined in some countries while in others they are becoming increasingly fluid (McKeen & Bu, 2005). This article examines Chinese student newcomers’ English learning lived experiences in a postsecondary English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programme and how different gender roles help or hinder the integration trajectories of those students into Canadian multicultural society. In this study, women language learners who seem to follow a more traditional feminine position experience more intercultural transformations of their identities than their male counterparts with worldviews perceived as more masculine. The study shows that gender roles serve as an impacting factor on second language learning processes for Chinese women and men. We conclude that gender equality pedagogy and gender-sensitive awareness should be promoted in language teaching and learning in order to foster a more inclusive educational environment for students from diverse backgrounds who might still have traditional behaviours towards gender roles.
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