Non-Native English-Speaking Teachers’(NNESTs') Identities and Ideologies on the U.S.-Mexico Border: A Case Study

Gonzalo Hugo Favela Camacho, University of Texas at El Paso


With a world population of 7.8 billion people, English language learners' number 1.5 billion, globally (British Council, 2019). This requires a substantial English language teaching force. Notably, 80 percent of the estimated 15 million English teachers worldwide are Non-Native English-Speaking Teachers (NNESTs). Despite the demand for English language education, anti-NNEST stereotypes persist, challenging the prevalent belief that native speakers are inherently superior language instructors, regardless of their educational backgrounds. This study, grounded in the LangCrit theoretical framework (Crump, 2014), employs a qualitative case study research design to explore the professional experiences, identities, and language ideologies of five NNESTs in a bilingual border community. As most studies of NNESTs have been conducted in countries where English is not the dominant language, this study is unique, in that it was conducted in the United States. The inquiry addresses the unique context of the U.S.-Mexico border, where the majority speaks a language other than English at home. It aims to unveil the challenges that NNESTs face, their interactions with faculty and students, their collaboration with Native English-Speaking Teachers (NESTs), as well as their ideologies and identities. The LangCrit framework offers a lens to analyze identity intersections and ideologies in the context of language teaching. The findings contribute to a deeper understanding of NNEST dynamics and their impact on language education, challenging prevalent stereotypes.

Subject Area

Bilingual education|English as a Second Language|Educational sociology

Recommended Citation

Favela Camacho, Gonzalo Hugo, "Non-Native English-Speaking Teachers’(NNESTs') Identities and Ideologies on the U.S.-Mexico Border: A Case Study" (2023). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI30819645.