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Eclectic Approach in Education

Eclectic approach is a method of language teaching that combines various approaches and methodologies to teach language depending on the aims of the lesson and the ability of the learners.(1)

Approaches and Methods Used

There are varied approaches and methods used for language teaching. In eclectic approach, the teacher can choose from these different methods and approaches:

  • Grammar-translation Method: It is a method of teaching languages by which students learn grammatical rules and then apply those rules by translating between the target language and the native language.(2)
  • Direct Method: In this method, the teacher refrains from using the students' native language. The target language is directly used for teaching all the four skills-listening, speaking, reading and writing.
  • Structural-situational Approach: In this approach the teacher teaches language through a careful selection, gradation and presentation of vocabulary items and structures through situation based activities. (3)
  • Audio-lingual/Audio-visual Method: In this style of teaching, students are taught through a system of reinforcement. Here, new words and grammar are directly taught without using the students' native language. However, unlike direct method, audio-lingual method does not focus on vocabulary. Instead, the teacher focuses on grammar through drill and practice.
  • Bilingual Method: The word 'bilingual' means two languages. In bilingual method, the teacher teaches the language by giving mother tongue equivalents of the words or sentences. This method was developed by C.J. Dodson. (4)
  • Communicative Language Teaching: This approach lays emphasis on oral method of teaching. It aims to develop communicative competence in students.
  • Total-Physical Response: It is based on the theory that memory is enhanced through association with physical response. (5)
  • The Silent Way: In this method, the teacher uses a combination of silences and gestures to focus students' attention. It was developed by Caleb Gattegno.


  • The teacher has more flexibility.
  • No aspect of language skill is ignored.
  • There is variety in the classroom.
  • Classroom atmosphere is dynamic.


  3. Aslam, Mohammad (2003). Teaching of English. Cambridge University Press. p.61
  4. Dash, M. & Dash, Neena (2007). Teaching English As An Additional Language. Atlantic. p. 67

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