Publication Date

Fall 11-1-2015

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

First Advisor

Dr. Susan Barduhn


This paper contextualizes current challenges to English learning in Brazil within the educational history of the country. It explores the ways in which language, both native literacy and foreign, has been used to set apart and advantage the elite class, while educational policy and approaches have served to pacify and control the majority. This history has left psychological, cultural, and economic legacies which inhibit learning today. Nevertheless, modern globalization is placing increasing pressure on Brazilians to achieve fluency in English and other languages. This paper briefly outlines the new and complex intellectual and social skills needed to participate in a global world, which have not been developed by authoritarian approaches to education, as well as how the development of English as an International Language (EIL) provides a solution to the identity conflict caused by an English as a Foreign Language (EFL) perspective. With this historic and modern context as the background, this paper describes the importance of English in the ecotourism destination of Bonito, Brazil and outlines a new approach to English learning that seeks to address the challenges previously discussed here and engage learners actively in the process of language learning.


Educational Methods | Educational Sociology | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education