Incorporating Advising Strategies into One-to-One Tutoring: Effects on the Awareness Towards Vocabulary Learning

Doğuş Aydın, Foreign Language Education, Istanbul Kultur University, Turkey

Birsen Tütüniş, Foreign Language Education, Istanbul Kultur University, Turkey

Aydın, D., & Tütüniş, B. (2021). Incorporating advising strategies into one-to-one tutoring: Effects on the awareness towards vocabulary learning. Studies in Self-Access Learning Journal, 12(1), 4–20.


Language advising helps a language learner discover different ways of learning and enables him/her to make decisions for better learning. This paper reports on an inquiry conducted with one English language learner who had difficulty with vocabulary acquisition which led to a perceived lack of progress in learning. The main purpose of the research was to observe and interpret the experience of the learner in terms of how different teaching and learning strategies appeared to affect her vocabulary learning. Qualitative research instruments including a semi-structured interview and a diary were used for this study. The results showed an increase in the learner’s control over her vocabulary learning process which was likely facilitated by the incorporation of language advising strategies into individual private tutoring.

Keywords: language advising, vocabulary learning strategies, learner autonomy, individual private tutoring

In foreign language learning in the Turkish context, there is a consensus among students that it is the language teacher’s responsibility to teach the language. Although fostering learners to exercise control over their learning is one of the aims of the Ministry of Education, students may not be ready to take responsibility. To overcome this lack of responsibility in learners, the teacher’s roles need to be redefined as “counsellor, helper, facilitator, knower, mentor, consultant” (Riley, 1997, p. 115). Autonomy is considered important at this point since autonomous learners are motivated, reflective, and their learning is efficient and effective (Little, 1991). Autonomy is defined as people taking more control over their learning both within and outside the classroom (Benson, 2011). However, learners need their teachers’ support to become autonomous. Teacher support can be given in different ways; either by advising learners outside the classroom or alongside the curriculum although language advising (LA hereafter) mainly takes place one-to-one (Kato & Mynard, 2015). In addition, individual private tutoring (I-PT) can make use of techniques and strategies of LA. Bray (2003) refers to private tutoring as shadow education and points out the disadvantage and the negative effects on students as it does not focus on improving students’ attitudes and other educational goals but rather on academic attainment and fostering dependence on private tutoring. In other words, autonomy as aligned with the educational goals is mainly ignored in I-PT settings. However, if I-PT is combined with advising, rather than just tutoring on the language itself (Reinders, 2008), then it can lead to positive outcomes in learning foreign languages. This study aims to display a 10-week period of study on how teaching style can play a role in the promotion of learner autonomy, how LA strategies may be incorporated into I-PT sessions and finally how the modification impacted one learner’s vocabulary learning process.

Literature Review

Learner Autonomy

Little (1991) states that learner autonomy is not easy to define in a few paragraphs. Despite this difficulty, the portrayal of what learner autonomy refers to has been attempted. It is often defined as the capacity to take charge of, or responsibility for, one’s own learning (Benson, 2011). In addition, learner autonomy is a capacity for “detachment, critical reflection, decision-making, and independent action” (Little, 1991, p. 4). Therefore, autonomous learning relates to self-management and independent learning with self-awareness and language learning strategies (Jiménez et al., 2007).

Language Advising

LA is a process that aims to foster learner autonomy through intentional reflective dialogue (Kato & Mynard, 2015). LA has its roots mainly in humanistic counselling and in a person-centred approach to counselling as well as life coaching (Kato & Mynard, 2015; Kelly, 1996; Mozzon-McPherson, 2001). LA is usually held in one-to-one settings in which advisees’ beliefs and values are challenged to make them experience ‘aha’ moments thanks to intentionally reflective dialogue that may lead to transformation (Kato & Mynard, 2015). One of the most important objectives of LA is to raise learners’ general awareness of the learning process and their knowledge of cognitive and affective strategies. Therefore, the role of LA is not to give learners the right answers but to advise, guide, encourage, and facilitate learning, raising awareness of their learning goals, needs, strategies and promoting the skills to manage their learning by themselves (Kato & Sugawara, 2009). An effective adviser draws upon a “skilled use of language that extends and enhances the learner’s thinking processes and helps him/her to gradually develop his/her way to self-manage learning” (Mozzon-McPherson, 2012, p. 46). To achieve this self-management, Kato and Mynard (2015) suggest a LA trajectory in which a learner is supported in going deeper to discover the root of the problem as he/she reflects more deeply and develops self-awareness. Throughout this study, Kato and Mynard’s (2015) conceptual framework regarding LA strategies, advising trajectory and aim of transformational advising were utilized. The research trajectory for advising in language learning encompasses four segments: getting started, going deeper, becoming aware, and transformation. After each of these segments, the depth of reflection increases. As Kato and Mynard (2015) suggest, learners are largely unaware of language learning processes and not very aware of their own language learning needs in ‘getting started’ segment of the trajectory. On the other hand, learners begin to display more awareness about language learning processes and needs in the ‘going deeper’ segment. In the ‘becoming aware’ segment, learners are largely aware and confident about their language learning processes and needs and use metalinguistic language to describe their issues. However, they still need some support from their adviser. In the ‘transformation’ segment, they are highly aware, confident, and ready to self-therapize themselves. On the other hand, this framework included LA strategies such as repeating, summarizing, restating, experience sharing, challenging, powerful questions, intuiting, metaphor, metaview linking, empathizing, complimenting, and giving positive feedback. These LA strategies might be categorized into three types to lead learners to complete transformation. The first of these is active listening strategies in which adviser listens to the advisee by repeating, summarizing, and restating. The second one might be to accept learners’ beliefs and values by empathizing, complimenting, and giving positive feedback. The third one might be to promote more reflection by asking powerful question, revealing intuitions, or using metaphor to describe advisee’s issue more reflectively.

LA has become a rapidly growing field which has plenty of scope for research (Benson, 2011; Kato & Mynard, 2015; Kato & Sugawara, 2009; Mozzon-McPherson, 2001). Research could be conducted in self-access centres, in language classrooms or in other formats such as peer advising, written advising, group advising or online advising. Incorporating LA strategies and practices into I-PT sessions might be another as-yet unexplored format.

Individual Private Tutoring

Bray (2003) defines private tutoring something that is done for financial gain and runs parallel to mainstream education. That is why, he refers to private tutoring as ‘shadow education.’ Long before schools were established, private tutors were employed to teach children in wealthy families. Even today, when universal education is available, many parents employ private tutors to supplement the teaching their children receive in school (Ireson, 2004). Although some studies (e.g., Ireson, 2004) have displayed the positive impact of these private tutorials over higher academic achievement, some studies (Bray, 2003; Hamid et al., 2009; Kozar, 2013) have also shown negative effects of private tutoring on some of learners’ autonomous skills. First, Bray (2013) pointed out that tutors might be fostering dependence on the tutor. This is contrary to fostering autonomous learning skills where teachers or tutors are expected to increase their learners’ independent out-of-class learning practices (Benson & Reinders, 2011). In another example, Kozar (2013) examined online tutoring advertisement profiles and found that tutors mainly held teacher-led, traditional, and fixed programs for all their learners. As Kato and Mynard (2015) suggest, a one-size-fits-all approach is not suitable for promoting learner autonomy. On the other hand, Hamid et al. (2009) investigated experiences of learners from Bangladesh and suggested that peer pressure was one of the most significant reasons for learners to engage in private tutoring sessions which again does not foster autonomous learning.

The role of tutors and tutoring practices have the potential to play a significant role in a shift from tutor-led and non-autonomous environment to more tutor-guided or mentored and autonomy-friendly environments (Stickler & Emke, 2011). Stickler and Emke (2011) investigated an online tutor-supported learning environment and determined that it might promote more non-formal learning advantages in the event that tutors also supported this out-of-class learning by adopting such roles. In another study, Barkhuizen (2011) emphasized an effective way of tutoring to create relationships between the tutor and the learner that are not possible within the classroom which might be a way to promote more autonomy since it can entail interdependency which is appropriate within learner autonomy practices (Little, 1991). The ideas put forward in the literature indicate the importance of exploring tutoring sessions which are designed in order to promote learner autonomy.

Combining Individual Private Tutoring and Language Advising

Another question arises at this point: which one is more beneficial for language learners, LA as a teaching approach, I-PT or both? Benson (2011) and Voller (2014) identify a teacher’s role as facilitator, helper, coordinator, counsellor, consultant, adviser, knower and resource, and the application of these roles into teaching displays positive results over students’ decision-making processes and control over their own learning. van Rossum’s (2001) investigation on the other hand, suggests that there are benefits of the integration of LA into classroom teaching in terms of linguistic success and problem solving. Reinders (2008) states explicitly that LA is different from tutoring since it does not focus on the language itself but rather how to learn it. Therefore, as a tutor or teacher, it is essential to adapt your role to incorporate LA strategies to assist the learner to develop an awareness of his/ her learning processes.

As mentioned above, incorporating LA strategies into I-PT sessions might not only overcome challenges of potential dependency, but also bring a unique perspective to the literature by demonstrating that tutoring sessions might foster more autonomous learning if they are designed appropriately with the help of LA.


Research Design

This paper reveals the results of a study about one English language learner who had difficulty with vocabulary acquisition in her pursuit of language learning. The main aim of the study was to understand and interpret the experience of the learner. For this purpose, within an interpretivist paradigm which has grown out of Edmund Husserl’s philosophy of hermeneutics with the intention of understanding “the world of human experience” (Cohen et al., 1994, p. 21), a qualitative research design was used for this research. This study’s purpose was not to find out the absolute truth but to see what works better while supporting this learner to achieve her goals. Therefore, qualitative research techniques – a semi-structured interview and a diary kept by the tutor who was also the first researcher were adapted. In addition, the second researcher had the role of analysing the data by doing the second cycle of coding in order to reduce bias and increase reliability. Related to this, the participant was ensured that the interview and research processes were not evaluative, rather the aim was to understand her feelings and experiences to improve the learning. As the participant was not an adult, a signed consent form from the parent was received as well as one from the participant herself. In addition, the participant was informed that she could drop out of the project at any time without penalty. Upon taking necessary measures, the sessions were constructed with a length of 90-minutes for 10 weeks. The research questions were:

RQ1: How do different teaching and learning strategies affect one learner’s vocabulary learning within 10-week period?

RQ2: How do the tutor’s approaches to teaching change over time?


The participant was a Turkish female student aged 15 attending an upper secondary state school in the spring semester of 2019. During this study, the student (pseudonym Lale) was having difficulty with learning English words. The difficulty was identified by the tutor after having received feedback from Lale that she felt desperate and annoyed about not being able to learn words. However, the tutor’s aim was to enable the learner to realize her weak point, reflect on her learning processes and discover better vocabulary learning strategies herself. As one of the teacher-based approaches of autonomous learning, LA was integrated into these sessions to increase Lale’s self-awareness and enable her to control her own learning which is an important element of learner autonomy (Benson, 2011).

Procedure and Data Collection Process

Lale participated in ordinary I-PT classes which included the teaching of grammar, vocabulary, reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. These I-PT sessions were supported by LA strategies which were integrated into the sessions. The tutor used a textbook called New Headway series (Soars & Soars, 2009) for the classes. All I-PT and LA sessions were held in the L2 (English).

Lale initially requested that the tutor note down almost every word that she did not know the meaning of during their sessions in order to save them in her portfolio. She then wrote in her own notebook or added words to a mobile application called Quizlet by creating a vocabulary set herself.

For 10 weeks, advising strategies were incorporated from time to time within I-PT sessions. However, teaching was more common initially during these 10 weeks, but it increasingly began to be replaced by LA week by week. The tutor decided to incorporate LA into I-PT sessions more in the sixth session. In final five sessions, the tutor proposed that each session contain half I-PT and half LA. The first half (45 minutes) of the I-PT session done on 31 July 2019 incorporated LA to support the learner in achieving her goal of acquiring new vocabulary more effectively. The thing that the tutor mostly did was to focus on the learner more holistically. Another reason to adapt the sessions and incorporate LA was to initiate reflective dialogue to help Lale to start the planning process and encourage her to reflect more deeply and discover the best vocabulary learning strategies for herself. All LA sessions were indirective even if Lale sometimes tried to be directed.

Regarding the collection process, the tutor kept a diary on his observations, Lale’s feelings and her ideas and practices related to her vocabulary learning processes, as well as his own teaching /advising strategies and reflections as a tutor and adviser. He kept diary notes each week throughout 10 weeks as Microsoft Word file diary notes in English. This diary was kept in order to monitor how the learner changed in terms of vocabulary learning strategies weekly, as well as teaching and advising strategies and their apparent impact on learning. In addition, a semi-structured interview in the L2 was conducted with Lale at the end of 10 weeks. It was highly important for them to investigate and find out (i) how and why she changed her vocabulary learning strategies over time, (ii) her feelings about new strategies, and (iii) her perceptions of the teaching and LA approaches used by the tutor. In addition, the semi-structured interview intended to understand whether she took more control over her learning after each week. Selected questions were as follows:

  1. Do you think this new vocabulary learning system is effective? Why/Why not?
  2. How did you realize that you could learn like this?
  3. How do you feel about vocabulary learning now?
  4. Which activities are better for learning new words?
  5. You had some unknown words on your list. Why do you think you could not learn those words?
  6. Which do you think is better: finding your own solutions or being told about the solutions by your teacher?

Data Analysis

We often envision research proceeding in a linear fashion: establish research questions, design a study, collect data, analyze them, and present findings. In a qualitative research, however, analysis typically begins during data collection, and preliminary findings may shape subsequent data collection (Friedman, 2012). Therefore, the qualitative data collected from the study were analyzed with a more interpretivist approach in an inductive way as this is an inquiry which aimed to investigate one learner’s vocabulary learning experience with the integration of teaching and LA and there was no intention to generalize. With the aim of gaining a deeper insight into the learner’s experiences, a diary was kept by the researcher who was also the tutor and a semi-structured interview was conducted at the end of the 10th week. The data collected from the 10-week diary were already in written form and did not require any transcription. However, the semi-structured interview needed to be transcribed.

All the data collected from the diary and the semi-structured interview were analyzed with a coding scheme to help the researchers interpret the results after the first reading to understand the text better. After some labels were ascribed to some words or expressions in Lale’s speech during the interview, they were coded descriptively by focusing on the research question and the aim of the study. Afterwards, these codes were grouped together in terms of their relationship with each other. On the other hand, the data collected from the diary were coded to show the magnitude in terms of the degree of the change in teaching approaches, strategies, and the learner herself in respect to vocabulary learning processes. Finally, the excerpts from the interview and diary were used to provide evidence for these codes and categories demonstrating how the learner improved her control over her vocabulary learning process and vocabulary learning strategies.

Findings and Results

In the first section, the findings from the semi-structured interview with the learner are displayed and analyzed. In the second section, the analysis of the diary notes is presented.

Findings from Semi-Structured Interview

The codes collected based on the number of occurrences to display the impact of LA strategies incorporated into one-to-one tutoring sessions over the learner’s vocabulary learning process and excerpts from the interview with Lale are presented in Table 1:

Table 1

Findings from Semi-Structured Interview

The four codes shown in Table 1 were applied to the interview data. This enabled the researchers to investigate whether changes in teaching strategy (which incorporated LA strategies into tutoring) influenced learning. First, the code signifying efficient vocabulary learning strategies (n=8) occurred the most as these excerpts from the interview show:

Tutor: So do you think your teacher telling how to study is better than finding your solution yourself?

Lale: Yes.

Tutor: Which one is better?

Lale: Finding my solution.

Tutor: Why? Why do you think so? Brainstorming.

Lale: Because when I find my solution, I believe it. I can do it because It is my solution. I know myself.

Tutor: Better than the teacher?

Lale: Yes.

Second, the learner displayed the impact of teaching strategy change over self-evaluation skills (n=4) with her vocabulary learning process by reporting in the interview as follows:

Tutor: Yes. You have some words that you could not remember. Why do you think that you could not remember those words?

Lale: Because firstly I do not do all my activities… five steps… Well because you do not inform me about them at all.

Third, the learner recorded statements showing interdependency (n=4) with the tutor after the change in teaching strategy as indicated in the interview excerpt below:

Tutor: Did you realize these steps yourself? Did you realize that you can learn better by hearing? You can learn better if I tell in the classroom. Yourself?

Lale: Hmm, not only myself. I know it but my teacher knows it, too.

Fourth, the learner indicated during the interview how her self-efficacy (n=2) was promoted due to the change in teaching strategy thanks to LA strategies as in the following excerpt:

Tutor: How could you realize that you could learn like this?

Lale: Hmm… When I studied my last week’s words, I think I remember the last week’s words, so I think I can learn with this system better.

Fifth, Lale reported gaining more motivation (n=1) because of her vocabulary learning process as this except from the interview indicates:

Tutor: How do you feel about vocabulary learning now?

Lale: I can learn, and I feel happy about it. Before I cannot learn, and I feel upset then I do not want to work them then I do not work but now I think I can learn, and I am trying to learn them.

To sum up, the findings from the semi-structured interview provided insights about the enhanced level of control over Lale’s vocabulary learning process aided by the incorporation of LA strategies into one-to-one tutoring sessions. This finding was also validated with the informal results of being able to remember 45 out of 57 words at the end of the second five weeks in contrast to the first five weeks in which she was able to remember only six words out of 43 words

Findings from the Diary

The diary kept by the tutor at the end of each session was interpreted in terms of the weekly change in teaching approaches and strategies. Furthermore, the learner’s change in terms of vocabulary learning processes was also investigated every week with respect to the adoption of more autonomous strategies.

The tutor recorded statements in the diary that were interpreted to be somewhat tutor- centred approach rather than a learner- centred approach in the first four weeks:

I was dealing with a listening text with her about weather forecast and she learnt words related to weather forecast such as ‘thunderstorm, hurricane, evacuate, had better, horizon’. This was tough, and not interesting listening text as far as I realized. I found it interesting first but while we were having class with her, I realized that she found it boring. (Week 1)

This text had so many unknown words and they were hard enough to remember as they are not so common words and most of them are not so inspiring, I think. I will not use this text anymore as it does not lead the learner to create more self-regulations. (Week 2)

We covered a part in the textbook where we were trying to learn adverbs in context. There were three texts that included several adverbs. One of them was about a cozy flat. The other was about homemade food and the last was about a man looking for a person to date. It seemed to me that she was attracted to the text more. (Week 3)

To be honest, I was discouraged and upset about not seeing her improved. That is why, I continued tutoring and did not make use of advising during the class to support her to have a better way of control over her learning. I did not focus on new words that much as I did not have that motivation to continue in that sense for that week. (Week 4)

In contrast, the tutor provided more guidance and adopted a learner- centred approach to a larger extent after the fifth week as stated in the diary below:

I decided to use LA strategies throughout all over the session almost to be able to help her while she was figuring out possible solutions herself. As I felt that she was at the level of ‘Getting started’, she generally replied by saying that she did not know how to make her vocabulary learning process better which ended up with my experience sharing of one of my older students who improved his vocabulary knowledge by saying, writing, hearing, doing, and reading. (Week 6)

However, some steps of these five steps were disregarded by her as she did not want to follow those steps. After giving her positive feedback and celebrating the moment of her accomplishment, I asked her why she avoided some other steps in contrast to what she promised herself. This was the challenging that I used as an advising strategy. She said that she found them boring as well as time consuming. Therefore, she skipped watching a video in which that targeted word passed by. (Week 7)

Even though I tried to make her go deeper, she resisted not to change as she believed in that deeply. That is why, I did not push because the words that she could remember were also well. (Week 8)

This week was like a closure to research as she finally told that she is more confident, and she believes that she can handle all kinds of vocabulary issues herself as she noticed that making up a story with the words and seeing the words in a context on Google were the most effective strategies for her. (Week 10)

On the other hand, first week was attributed to learner centered approach in a higher degree in contrast to the general tendency of the flow of the study. The reason seemed to be focusing more on the learner at the beginning of the study which could be seen in the statement below:

I would like to understand why she is suffering and how I can support her to change her feelings and way of learning. (Week 1)

On the other hand, the tutor recorded statements showing the degree of the shift from tutoring to language advising within 10-week period as below:

I was asking some powerful questions as I do in my advising sessions to let her discover the root of the problem but the time that I share for this within the I-PT session is quite short. Maybe I should share more time for it. (Week 1)

I was asking some powerful questions as I do in my advising sessions to let her discover the root of the problem but the time that I share for this within the I-PT session was quite limited. (Week 2)

I also used the strategy of ‘intuiting’ to make her reflect deeper by saying that she feels that she can learn better by associating the words. (Week 4)

When I asked how she could remember those two words, she said that they were because she saw them in films too often and her ex-classmate explained her these two words. (Week 5)

I decided to use LA strategies throughout all over the session almost to be able to help her while she was figuring out possible solutions herself. (Week 6)

After giving her positive feedback and celebrating the moment of her accomplishment, I asked her why she avoided some other steps in contrast to what she promised herself. (Week 7)

To celebrate the moment more widely, I used the strategy of metaview, and reminded her of the previous time when she could not decide on what to do next before. (Week 9)

After the advising part of the sixth session, Lale began to discover new vocabulary learning strategies herself which appeared to have been facilitated by the LA strategies. One strategy that Lale discovered was to make use of saying, writing, reading, hearing, and doing something about/with the word. The tutor recorded such statements in the diary displaying higher degree of autonomy, and control over her own vocabulary learning process.

As I felt that she was at the level of ‘Getting started’, she generally replied by saying that she did not know how to make her vocabulary learning process better which ended up with my experience sharing of one of my older students who improved their vocabulary knowledge by saying, writing, hearing, doing, and reading. She then thought and told that she could record some sentences herself, write some sentences from the dictionary and herself, watching a video in which that word was aimed to be learned, making up a story with some words together and googling that word to find some texts where this word was contextualized. This was the time when she began to go deeper in terms of level of awareness. (Week 6)

She decided to omit the other three ways that she followed while she was studying for the words. At that time, I decided that she was in the level of ‘Becoming aware’ as she began to reply with much more confidence and using some words like ‘I realized, I thought, I decided’ and she started to self-advise herself. This was the true time to end up having sessions, as well. (Week 10)

The tutor recorded statements addressing the learner’s much lower level of motivation concerning vocabulary learning in the first five weeks and higher degree during the second five weeks as below:

The desperateness was because she could not remember any of the words last week. (Week 1)

When she checked herself if she could remember the words from the last week, she was only able to remember the word ‘sun-tanned’ from last week. This made her feel upset as she had begun to be hopeful. (Week 4)

This was a triumph for both of us as a learner and adviser. (Week 10)

In addition, the tutor reported statements showing the learner’s high level of self-efficacy and self-confidence after the sixth week as below:

I gave her positive feedback by saying that this sounds a particularly good plan to conduct. I believe that she will be extraordinarily successful. She decided to conduct that. (Week 6)

She declared her feeling of comfort and confidence because of the change. (Week 8)

This week was like a closure to research as she finally told that she is more confident, and she believes that she can handle all kinds of vocabulary issues herself as she noticed that making up a story with the words and seeing the words in a context on Google were the most effective strategies for her. She decided to omit the other three ways that she followed while she was studying for the words. At that time, I decided that she was in the level of ‘Becoming aware’ as she began to reply with much more confidence and using some words like ‘I realized, I thought, I decided’ and she started to self-advise herself. (Week 10)

All the statements were about the adoption of different, new, effective teaching and learning strategies indicate that the vocabulary learning process was positively affected by LA strategies positively more each week.


This section discusses the findings gathered from semi-structured interview and diary notes in terms of research question and relevant literature. Firstly, Kato and Mynard (2015) noted that advisees come to the session for two reasons one of which is about language proficiency and the other about affective issues. In this study, the participant came to the tutoring session for language proficiency. Later on, LA strategies were incorporated into I-PT sessions for a better vocabulary learning process. The first finding was that the tutor implemented a strategy change in his teaching style by adopting LA and giving more control to the learner. He accomplished this strategy change from the sixth session onwards and provided a more autonomous classroom environment for the learner. This result aligns with the statement by van Rossum (2001) who explained in his work that a teacher’s willingness to share the power with students when the role is changed in these such contexts is significant. In this case, incorporating LA strategies into tutoring was effective for the learner’s control over her learning which positively affected her vocabulary learning process. Upon discovering some ineffective materials and strategies due to this teaching strategy change, she eventually came up with effective vocabulary learning strategies. These included inventing a story using the words she had learnt, seeing the words in a context, listening to them in an audio text, writing and reading with those words. From analyzing the data, this development in learning strategies, motivation, self-confidence, self-efficacy, autonomous attitudes appeared to increase over time throughout the study. Therefore, it may be appropriate to change hats (McCarthy, 2009) or reposition ourselves and our roles as educators in order to help students to develop autonomy. Although the tutor did not completely shift from being a teacher, using LA within the tutoring sessions helped the learner to foster her autonomous skills and she developed an awareness of the vocabulary learning process as a result. However, we need to keep in mind that although there is evidence indicating that incorporating LA into tutoring sessions results in better vocabulary learning, this result may have been facilitated by other factors such as the nature of the words and level of exposure to these words. However, this inquiry illustrated that the learner displayed more autonomous behaviors and an awareness of her learning process while focusing on her vocabulary development.


Kato and Mynard (2015) state that LA can be incorporated into classroom teaching or outside the classroom, with smaller groups but mainly in one-to-one settings. That is why, I-PT may successfully incorporate LA because of its individualized environment. However, this kind of LA would not be easy to conduct because of the expectations that learners have from a tutor. As Bray (2003) asserted, tutors generally neglect autonomous and other lifelong skills. On the other hand, this study suggests that incorporating LA strategies into tutoring sessions and transforming teaching approaches with more learner centered models would have the potential to help the learner by promoting learner autonomy. In addition, this shift in teaching approach might lead to a more efficient and positive vocabulary learning process including more motivation, self-confidence and self-efficacy or other characteristics that might lead to a better learning environment. In addition, the degree of directiveness, how to change roles and repositioning ourselves are some of the concepts that are discussed in this study and paved the way for more positive vocabulary learning experience for the learner in this study. Nevertheless, this repositioning of tutoring might be considered carefully and especially put forward at the time of a failure in being able to accomplish some targets in language teaching at some intervals. Some allocated time during tutoring sessions might be used for LA practices or perhaps a complete class hour can be used. The focus and role should be clarified and revealed to the learner explicitly not to confuse both roles at the outset of a tutoring session, as well. In the event that a learner might be able to discover the root of the issue autonomously, h/she would probably be highly motivated and open towards LA which would make it easier to adopt for the subsequent tutorials. To gain deeper insights, LA strategies would let us dig and find the deeper reason relating to that obstacle in learning. In addition to that deeper reason, it would help learners develop autonomy.

Kato and Mynard (2015) note the rewarding experience of advising in which language advisers create strong bonds with the advisees and help them to experience milestones for their self-discovery, higher awareness and the solutions of problems that arise. This study investigated a case in which a student found her own solution when the tutor incorporated LA into his practice.

Notes on the Contributors

Doğuş Aydın holds a BA degree in English Language and Literature from Istanbul University. He is a Ph.D. candidate in this field at Istanbul Aydin University and currently working at Istanbul Kultur University ELT department as a part-time lecturer. He also works as an English teacher, tutor, and language adviser.

Prof. Dr. Birsen Tütünis has received her PhD from University of Sussex. She has been working in our field for 23 years. She has written articles and books on different issues. She is the Teacher Training and Development Special Interest Group events coordinator of IATEFL. She has been the keynote speaker and given presentations at international ELT Conferences. She is an honorary member of Azerbaijan English Teachers’ Association in Azerbaijan.


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