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Kathryn Sidaway


I have worked in English Language Teaching since 2007, teaching in further education colleges in England. The main focus of my work has been teenage and adult ESOL, teaching students from all over the world who have made their home here in the United Kingdom. In addition to this, I have worked as an examiner for a range of English language exam boards and managed an EFL department in a college. I am a qualified teacher, holding the Postgraduate Diploma in Post-Compulsory Education and Training, Level 5 Subject Specialism in ESOL and the CELTA.

Having completed an MA in English Language Teaching (Distinction) and MA in Social Science Research (Distinction), both at the University of Warwick, I am currently a PhD candidate in English Language Teaching.

Current Research

The focus of my research is on the language learning motivation of adult ESOL students at the B1/B1+ level and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. I am particularly interested in the small-lens approach to motivation research, with a focus on sharing the voices of students who are often overlooked in the wider ELT literature.


Sidaway, K. (2021). Exploring the motivation of women studying in a multilevel ESOL class in England. TESOL Journal, 00e 118.

Chick, M., & Sidaway, K. (2020). " It would be great to feel more valued and invested in...": Exploring ESOL Teacher Working Conditions and Professional Development In England And Wales. Language Issues: The ESOL Journal, 31(1), 35-46.

What are the effects of low-stakes exams? IATEFL ES(O)L SIG Newsletter, July 2019 – reprinted in IATEFL TEA SIG Newsletter, December 2019.

Sidaway, K. (2018). The effects and perception of low-stakes exams on the motivation of adult ESOL students in the UK. Language Issues: The ESOL Journal, 29(1), 17-29.

Conference Presentations

BAAL 2021 Conference (online), September 2021, poster presentation ‘Teachers’ perspectives of adult ESOL learners’ motivation and resilience during the Covid-19 pandemic’ - Awarded the prize for the best poster

IATEFL International Conference (online), June 2021, ES(O)L SIG Showcase Day, 'Migrant women in a multilevel class - identity and motivation'

Journal of Languages, Texts and Society, June 2020, Online Conference 'My researcher journey. Researching adult students whilst becoming one myself'

NATECLA, National Conference, July 2019, Aston University ‘Drawing your distance travelled: Getting to know your learners’

IATEFL International Conference, April 2019, Liverpool, ES(O)L SIG Showcase Day, ‘What are the effects of low-stakes exams?’

FOLLM Doing an MA dissertation on Motivation, February 2019, University of Warwick ‘Writing a Dissertation on Motivation for an MA in English Language Teaching – challenges and opportunities

Additional Information

I hold ESRC funding through the Midlands Graduate Scheme on a 1+3 programme.

I am the co-editor of ESOL Matters, the IATEFL ES(O)L SIG newsletter.

I am the joint co-ordinator of a global, online research community for PhD students researching language learning motivation.

Prior my career in ELT, I completed an LLB (Hons) and worked for a crime prevention charity for five years, working with disaffected young people across Bradford and Keighley.