Maintaining Effort and Interest despite Challenges during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Process Tracing Approach to a Teacher’s Grit during an Online L2 Course

Authors

  • Majid Elahi Shirvan University of Bojnord
  • Nigel Mantou Lou
  • Mojdeh Shahnama
  • Elham Yazdanmehr

Keywords:

L2 teacher, grit, effort, interest, COVID-19

Abstract

Grit—the ability to maintain effort and interest for long-term goals—is argued to be an important individual factor for achievement, especially in the face of obstacles. However, little research has examined the possible fluctuations of effort and interest and how challenges may trigger the changes of effort and interest. In this study, we measured a teacher’s grit at the beginning of an online course during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we focused on the changes in a teacher’s effort and interest throughout the course. In this case study we unpacked the explanations of possible changes in grit via process tracing. Despite the fact that the teacher scored high on the grit scale, we found that the sudden shift from in-person to online teaching had put much pressure and demand on the teacher. The new teaching challenge influenced the teacher’s self-evaluation of her teaching performance and students’ engagement, which led to changes in effort and interest. Therefore, we argue that one’s average grit (e.g., measured by grit scale) cannot be the representation of their ability to maintain interest and effort on different occasions due to the influence of different situational causes or pressure. Specifically, during the course, the teacher’s effort and interest underwent changes on four occasions, characterized by four distinct dynamic patterns in terms of the interaction of high and low interest and effort. The four emerging patterns of L2 teacher effort and interest indicate that the construct of grit could be explained in terms of four dynamic clusters or archetypes. This study provides implications for understanding the complex dynamic nature of grit, which can be further explored through cluster analytic approaches in future studies.

Published

2021-12-19

How to Cite

Elahi Shirvan, M., Lou, N. M., Shahnama, M. ., & Yazdanmehr, E. (2021). Maintaining Effort and Interest despite Challenges during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Process Tracing Approach to a Teacher’s Grit during an Online L2 Course. JOURNAL FOR THE PSYCHOLOGY OF LANGUAGE LEARNING, 3(2), 45-60. Retrieved from https://jpll.org/index.php/journal/article/view/69