The English language curriculum prepared by the Ministry of National Education for high schools in Turkey seems to be satisfactory in theory, but the related studies about the attitudes of actual practitioners towards English classes in high schools are not detailed and comprehensive enough. This study aims to fill this gap. To do so, qualitative research was conducted with 13 English language teachers and 55 high school students from different parts of Turkey. They were asked for their opinions, applications, observations, and challenges of the English language teaching system in their high schools and some suggestions for the problematic issues were requested from them via open-ended questions. The data were analyzed descriptively; the results showed that most teachers are not satisfied with the coursebooks, crowded classes, quite limited class hours, and unmotivated students. Their main suggestions cover the privatization of education, having language libraries, labs, speaking clubs, and more lesson hours for English and decreasing the number of students in each classroom. Additionally, teachers want to attend international seminars to become aware of the latest methods/sources. Students have some valuable suggestions for the improvements as well. Nearly all of the students are unhappy about the coursebooks; thus, they suggest them to be revised. They also want to join international projects and improve their language skills. As a result of the study, suggestions covering many issues like coursebooks, assessment, teacher training, and European projects were proposed with an aim to diminish the gap between theories and applications in real classes. © 2019 EJAL & the Authors. Published by Eurasian Journal of Applied Linguistics (EJAL). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution license (CC BY-NC-ND) (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
Aksoy, E., Bozdoğan, D., Akbaş, U., & Seferoğlu, G. (2018). Old wine in a new bottle: Implementation of intensive language program in the 5th grade in Turkey. Eurasian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 4(2), 301-324. doi:10.32601/ejal.464187
Arıkan, A. (2015). An autoethnography of teaching English to young learners: From theory to practice. Anthropologist, 20(1, 2), 77-85.
Arslan, R. Ş. (2012). Bridging the gap between policy and practice in teaching English to young learners: The Turkish context. Pamukkale University Journal of Education, 32(2), 95-100.
Bozkurt, E., Kavak, N., Yamak, H., Bilici, S.C., & Ozkaya, Y. (2012). Secondary school teachers’ opinion about in-service teacher training: A focus group interview study. ProcediaSocial and Behavioral Sciences, 46, 3502-3506.
Erarslan, A. (2018). Strengths and weaknesses of primary school English language teaching programs in Turkey: Issues regarding program components. Eurasian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 4(2), 325-347. doi: 10.32601/ejal.464194
Erten, İ. H. (2015). Listening to practicing teachers: Implications for teacher training programs. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 199, 581-588.
Ertopçu, F.B., Inci, H., & Samur, S. Ö. (2015).Yes You Can. MEB: Ankara.
Ertopçu, F.B., Inci, H., &Samur, S. Ö. (2016).Yes You Can. MEB: Ankara.
Gültekin, M., & Cubukcu, Z. (2008). Perceptions of primary school teachers about in-service training. Journal of Social Sciences, 19, 185-201.
Gursoy, E., Korkmaz, S. C., & Damar, E. A. (2017). English language teaching within the new educational policy of Turkey: Views of stakeholder. International Education Studies, 10(4),18-30.
Kırkgöz, Y. (2009). Globalization and language policy in Turkey. Educational Policy, 23(5), 663-684.
Kömür, S. (2010). Teaching knowledge and teacher competencies: A case study of Turkish preservice English teacher. Teaching Education, 21(3), 279-296.
Nikolov, M., & Mihaljevic Djigunovic, J. (2011). All shades of every colour: An overview of early teaching and learning of foreign languages. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 31, 95-119.
Okul Tanıtım Bilgileri (2015, Mayıs). Retrieved from https://ogm.meb.gov.tr/.
Read, C. (2003). Is younger better?, English Teaching Professional, 28, 5-7.
Republic of Turkey Ministry of National Education Board of Education (MoNE-BoE). (2014). Secondary Education Institutions English Curriculum (9th -12th Grades). Ankara: Republic of Turkey Ministry of National Education.
Republic of Turkey Ministry of National Education Board of Education (MoNE-BoE). (2017). Secondary Education Institutions English Curriculum (9th -12th Grades) Ankara: Republic of Turkey Ministry of National Education.
Seferoğlu, G. (2006). Teacher candidates’ reflections on some components of a pre-service English teacher education programme in Turkey. Journal of Education for Teaching, 32(4), 369-378.
Uysal, H. H. (2012). Evaluation of an in-service training program for primary-school language teachers in Turkey. Australian Journal of teacher education, 37(7): 14-29. doi: 10.14221/ajte.2012v37n7.4