‘That's why I do it’: Flow and EFL teachers’ practices

Christine M. Tardy, Bill Snyder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Csikszentmihaly’s (1997) concept of flow describes a mental state resulting from peak experiences in which the level of challenge is high, but manageable given a person’s skills. Because flow occurs at peak moments, these moments can motivate teachers, possibly shaping their classroom practices and giving them insight into their teaching beliefs. This exploratory interview study examines ten EFL teachers’ flow experiences at work, and considers their implications for teacher education. The teachers all reported experiencing flow, and key categories relating to its occurrence were derived from their descriptions. Based on this study, we suggest that the concept of flow provides a tool for understanding more about teachers’ practices, beliefs, and values in their teaching. We conclude by considering ways in which flow may be incorporated into teacher development programmes, and investigated in future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-128
Number of pages11
JournalELT Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


Dive into the research topics of '‘That's why I do it’: Flow and EFL teachers’ practices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this