Promoting Autonomy Through Project Work


  • Claudia Patricia Mesa Villa Universidad de Antioquia
  • María Cristina Frodden Armstrong Universidad de Antioquia



project work, learners' autonomy, planning, negotiation, students' participation, reflection


This article presents teacher and learners' experience implementing project work as a strategy the authors used in an undergraduate foreign language teaching program at an important public university in Colombia. In order to find support for their view that project work is an effective approach to developing future teachers' autonomy, students who had participated in project work were interviewed and their responses were analyzed using Benson's contributions 1997, 2001 on autonomous learning,and Legutke and Thomas (1991) on project work as a framework. The authors discuss the following issues based on the students' experience: stages in the development of the project, characteristics of project work, and its relevance to developing learner autonomy.

Received: 26- 05- 04 /Accepted: 07-09-04

How to reference this article:

Mesa Villa, C. P. & Frodden Armstrong, M. C.  (2004). Promoting Autonomy Through Project Work. Íkala. 9(1), pp. 205 – 230 

= 148 veces | PDF
= 108 veces|


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biographies

Claudia Patricia Mesa Villa, Universidad de Antioquia

Estudiante de Sexto semestre de Licenciatura en Lenguas Extranjeras Francés e Inglés de la Escuela de Idiomas de la Universidad de Antioquia. Profesora de Cátedra del Centro de Extensión. Miembro del GIAE (Grupo de Investigación y Acción y Evaluación en Lenguas Extranjeras).

María Cristina Frodden Armstrong, Universidad de Antioquia

Ikala.indd Maestría en Educación Especialidad: Lingüística Aplicada. Miembro del GIAE (Grupo de Investigación y Acción y Evaluación en Lenguas Extranjeras).


Benson, Phil, 1997, “The philosophy and politics of learner autonomy”, in: Benson, Phil and Peter Voller, Autonomy and independence in language learning, London, Addison Wesley−Longman Ltd.

____________, 2001, Teaching and Researching Autonomy in Language Learning, London, Longman.

Frodden, Cristina, Edgar Picón and Jaime Usma, 2000, “Developing values, strategies and skills in future teachers”, HOW, a Colombian Journal for English Teachers, Vol. 8, 2000.

Frodden, Cristina and Gloria Cardona, 2001, “Authonomy in Foreign Language Teacher Education”, Ikala, revista de lenguaje y cultura, Medellín, 6 (11–12).

Hadfield, Jill, 1992, Classroom Dynamics, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Kelly, Mavis, 1990, “Supervising Undergraduate Projects” [electronic document] Workshop 2, City University of Hong Kong, <>

Legutke, Michael, and Howard Thomas, 1991, Process and experience in the language classroom, London, Longman.

Ministerio de Educación Nacional, 1998, Lineamientos generales de procesos curriculares. Hacia la Construcción de Comunidades Educativas Autónomas, Santafé de Bogotá, Ministerio de Educación Nacional.




How to Cite

Mesa Villa, C. P., & Frodden Armstrong, M. C. (2004). Promoting Autonomy Through Project Work. Íkala, Revista De Lenguaje Y Cultura, 9(1), 205–230.




Most read articles by the same author(s)