Crossing Cultural and Linguistic Borders: The Adult ESL Experience of Perspective Transformation

Kahtleen P. King, Fordham University


Perspective transformation offers one framework from which to examine the adult ESL learning experience. This framework highlights a process of critical reflection and self-examination that leads to personal development and change. Research among 208 adult ESL learners enrolled in ESL programs was conducted to examine the nature of their perspective transformation experiences. The analysis of the data revealed that adult ESL learners navigate through significant changes in their lives during their studies, particularly as it relates to their understanding of culture and language. Three major themes of perspective transformation were identified: language learning, cultural and personal change.