Achilleas Kostoulas

Applied Linguistics & Language Teacher Education

Language Teacher Psychology

Language Teacher Psychology is a volume that I co-edited with Sarah Mercer. It brings together 17 chapters by some of the most prominent researchers in the field of language education psychology (plus an introductory and a conclusion chapter). The volume was published by Multilingual Matters in 2018.


A copy of Language Teacher Psychology on display at BAAL2018
Language Teacher Psychology
  • Foreword (Zoltán Dörnyei)
  • Introduction to Language Teacher Psychology (Sarah Mercer & Achilleas Kostoulas)
  • Language Teacher Motivation (Phil Hiver, Tae-Young Kim & Youngmi Kim)
  • ‘The English Class of My Dreams’: Envisioning Teaching a Foreign Language (Paula Kalaja & Katja Mäntylä)
  • Language Teacher Motivation: From the Ideal to the Feasible Self (Taguhi Sahakyan, Martin Lamb & Gary Chambers)
  • Drawing on Cultural Models and Figured Worlds to Study Language Teacher Education and Teacher Identity (Manka M. Varghese)
  • Exploring Novice EFL Teachers’ Identity Development: A Case Study of Two EFL Teachers in China (Wendy Li & Peter I. De Costa)
  • Language Teacher Cognition: An Emergent Phenomenon in an Emergent Field (Anne Feryok)
  • Language Teachers’ Self-efficacy Beliefs: An Introduction (Mark Wyatt)
  • Teacher Emotions and the Emotional Labour of Second Language Teaching (Jim King & Kwan-Yee Sarah Ng)
  • The Relational Beliefs and Practices of Highly Socio-emotionally Competent Language Teachers (Christina Gkonou & Sarah Mercer)
  • Variation in ESL/EFL Teachers’ Attitudes towards their Students (Jean-Marc Dewaele & Sarah Mercer)
  • Language Teacher Agency (Cynthia J. White)
  • Teachers Crafting Job Crafting (Joseph Falout & Tim Murphey)
  • Teachstrong: The Power of Teacher Resilience for Second Language Practitioners (Phil Hiver)
  • Making the Transition into Teacher Education: Resilience as a Process of Growth (Achilleas Kostoulas & Anita Lämmerer)
  • Signature Strengths as a Gateway to Mentoring: Facilitating Emergent Teachers’ Transition into Language Teaching (Tammy Gregersen & Peter D. MacIntyre)
  • Psychological Insights from Third-age Teacher Educators: A Narrative, Multiple-case Study (Rebecca L. Oxford, Andrew D. Cohen & Virginia G. Simmons)
  • Exploring Language Teacher Psychology: A Case Study from a Holistic Perspective (Mehvish Saleem)
  • Conclusion: Lessons Learned, Promising Perspectives (Achilleas Kostoulas and Sarah Mercer)


To date, reviews of the book have appeared in the following journals:

  • The Reading Matrix, 20(1) (2020). Review by Ali Dincer.
  • Applied Linguistics. Advance Access. (2019). Review [paywall] by Honggang Liu. 
  • JALT Journal, 41(1). (2019). Review by Brian Cullen.
  • International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 29(1) (2018). Review by Sharona Moskowitz.

This book convincingly establishes a new field of enquiry, showing that language teacher psychology – though frequently neglected – really matters! Sarah Mercer and Achilleas Kostoulas have assembled a rich array of expert contributions, uniting hitherto disparate areas in a coherent, ground-breaking collection.

Richard Smith

In this masterful collection of recent research, Mercer and Kostoulas draw together a compelling rationale for attention to teachers as central players in language learning. The chapters in the book are compulsory reading for anyone wishing to gain deeper insights into language teacher psychology.

Anne Burns

The chapters in this book have succeeded in laying out a rich, colourful and textured landscape of research into language teachers. With its diverse conceptual frameworks and innovative methodologies, the book is bound to become a primary reference for anyone wishing to orient themselves in this terrain and/or contribute to it.

Maggie Kubanyiova

Language Teacher Psychology demonstrates successfully that a teacher-centered approach within the field of psychology of language learning deserves further attention at both a theoretical and empirical level, recognizing the value of studying psychological constructs as isolated entities, while ultimately providing more holistic, emergent, and situated approaches, which add practical insight to the subject.

Brian Cullen (JALT Journal 41/1)

Emphasizing the vibrancy and multidimensionality of LTP, the editors have deftly managed to bring together papers encompassing both well-established areas and recently evolving aspects of research in teacher psychology. They have also succeeded in opening some key vistas for the potential audience, such as L2 teachers, teacher educators, and L2 researchers. 

Ali Dincer (The Reading Matrix 20/1)

One notably strong aspect of this book is the range of contributors with varied backgrounds and voices who … make a strong and concerted argument for further investigation.

Sharona Moskowitz (International Journal of Applied Linguistics 29/1)

The volume successfully promotes LTP as an important research area in that it introduces theories closely related to LTP research, suggests possible topics for future LTP studies, and exemplifies research methods in the area.

Honggang Liu (Applied Linguistics [Advance Access])

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