The International Journal of Critical Pedagogy

Disrupting the commonplace: Critical literacy practices in the ESL reading classroom

Jihyun Nam


This critical qualitative research study explored the possibility of drawing on critical literacy in the Intensive English Program (IEP) classroom, specifically using ESL reading texts as learning materials for its practices. Five ESL participants recruited from the IEP at a major US Midwestern university engaged in critical literacy practices, which consisted of eight group discussion sessions about the content and points of view of selected ESL texts. Audio and video recorded discussion data were analyzed through the four dimensions model, used as both conceptual and analytical frameworks for this study. Based on the findings, this research study offers ESL/IEP educators a variety of effective strategies to promote ESL students’ critical engagement with their texts, specifically to help them disrupt the commonplace.


Critical Literacy, ESL Reading, Reading as a Social Practice, Intensive English Program

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