The integration of generative artificial intelligence (AI) in English language teaching presents opportunities and challenges for instructors. This study explores the attitudes of higher education English language instructors towards generative AI tools, their intentions to use them and the institutional support and professional development necessary to teach and learn with them. As the field continues to evolve rapidly, it is essential to comprehend the readiness of front-line language instructors. This qualitative interpretive study seeks to identify the digital competencies and pedagogical knowledge required to implement generative AI in education and provide guidance for the design of professional development programmes that address the challenges and concerns associated with adopting AI. Drawing on semi-structured interviews with twelve instructors at a higher education institution in Hong Kong, the findings reveal the significance of familiarity and confidence with using AI-driven teaching tools, the challenges and concerns language instructors face and the need for tailored support and professional development. The study offers ten practical implications to cultivate language instructors’ digital competencies, pedagogical knowledge and positive attitudes towards integrating AI to enhance their students’ learning experiences.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Artificial Intelligence
- Computer Science Applications
- Artificial intelligence
- Generative AI
- Higher education
- University language instructors