Second language acquisition:
1.) Behaviorism (B.F. Skinner)Observation: Children receive language input, imitate what they hear and experiencereinforcement.4 central theoretical concepts to explain the observation:• Imitation• Practice• (positive) Reinforcement• Habit formation
2.) Innativism (Krashen’s “monitor model” 1982)• The acquisition-learning hypothesiso Two different ways of adding new knowledge to the developing systemof the second language:§ Process of acquisition (natural process of creatively dealing withthe second language)§ Process of learning (explicit attempt to understand the languagee.g. through gap filling exercises)• The monitor hypothesiso There is a structure in our mind (the monitor) with which we can monitorwhat we say (e.g. being able to identify mistakes)
• The natural order hypothesiso How we supposed to learn L2 grammaro Natural order in which we acquire grammatical structures one afteranother (whenever we are ready and do not have to learn themconsciously, but to explore them more naturally)• The input hypothesiso Suggests that learners improve their language skills by receiving inputthat is slightly beyond their current level of understanding. The inputshould be comprehensible and interesting, so learners can acquire thelanguage subconsciously.• The affective filter hypothesiso According to this hypothesis, learners who are highly motivated and feelcomfortable in the language learning environment are more likely toacquire language subconsciously, whereas learners who feel anxiousmay have a “filter” that prevents them from acquiring languageeffectively. Teachers can lower the affective filter by creating asupportive and low-stress learning environment.
3.) Cognitivism (Swain’s “Output hypothesis” 1985)3 functions of output in the second language acquisition:• The noticing/triggering functiono When you are asked to say sth. Even though your knowledge is stilllimited, you will notice the gaps in your knowledge.• The hypothesis-testing functiono Testing creatively how you could express yourself in the secondlanguage (whether it feels right or grammatically correct)• The metalinguistic/reflective functiono Once you have tried your hypothesis and it sounds wrong, you startreflecting the sentence and change it into the correct form.
4.) Socio-cognitivsm (M. Long’s “Interaction Hypothesis” 1983)• Interactional modification makes input comprehensible (involves the interactionof social and cognitive factors. Successful language learners are those who areable to engage in meaningful social interactions, to notice and analyze thelinguistic input they receive; interaction with a speaker that is more proficient inthe language i.e. native speaker and learner)• Comprehensible input promotes acquisition• Therefore, interactional modification promotes acquisition
Approaches to TEFL1.) The grammar-translation methodPrinciples:• Objective: being able to read literature• Explicit (deductive) grammar instructions and memorization are important forthe SLA• Translation allows for careful contrastive analysis of the L1 and the L2Techniques:• Students read L2 texts aloud, talk about the text in the L1 and translate the textinto the L1 (sentence by sentence)• Students create word lists and translate words into the L1• Teacher explains the L2 grammar in the L1 and provides examples• Students apply grammar rules to the examples (e.g. fill in the gap exercises)
2.) The audiolingual method (Brooks 1960 & Lado 1964)Emphasizing mimicry and memorizationPrinciples:• Using the L2 in the classroom, avoid interference of the L1• Learning is repeating: habit formation• Errors lead to the formation of bad habits• Objective: learn structural patterns, vocabulary learning will follow• Natural order of skill acquisition: listening, speaking, reading, writingTechniques:• Students read (or listen to) and repeat scripted dialogues aloud, line by line• Substitution/transformation drills: students speak phrases, prompted by theteacher’s cues and then they substitute words (you, he, she) or transform thephrase e.g. into a question
3.) Total physical responsePrinciples:• Students should enjoy learning, pressure to speak should be avoided• Meaning in the L2 can be conveyed through physical actions• Memory (i.e. learning) is active through the learner’s response• In the early stages of L2 acquisition instructions should elicit nonverbal behavior• Language should be presented in chunksTechniques:• Teacher speaks commands, students respond nonverbally and carry them out• Order of commands changes• New commands are written on the blackboard• Visual cues are given
4.) Immersion teaching (Bilingual Education)Principles:• The L2 is the medium of instruction in content subjects (geography, history, etc.)• Objective: additive bilingualism• (content without language teaching)Techniques:• Contextualization (visual cues, use hands-on materials)• Multi-sensory learning (engages multiple senses in the learning process andinvolves using visual, auditory and tactile modalities to help learners processand retain information)• Scaffolding (repetition, paraphrase, referring to previous knowledge,visualization techniques) (temporary supportive structure that help learnersunderstand new concepts or skills)• Classroom interaction is in the L2, students may address the teacher in the L1
5.) Communicative language teachingPrinciples:• Aims at communicative competence: the ability to use the language correctlyand appropriately to accomplish communication goals• “Fluency before accuracy!”• Focuses on the social context of communicative situations• Presents a variety of linguistic forms so L2-users can express themselvesappropriately in different situationsTechniques:• Authentic material, hands-on materials like food and drinks, celebrations• Language games• Role-play, improvisation• Leading a debate, discussion
6.) Task-based language teachingPrinciples:• Focus on meaning• Elicit authentic “real-world” language use• Promote L2 interaction• Involve learners in problem-solving• Central aim: complete the task• Focus on form as it arises from learners needsTask-phases (Willis 1996):• Pre-task: instructions, expectations, language recall (In this stage, the teacherintroduces the topic and the task to be completed. This may involve providingstudents with relevant vocabulary and background information, as well asactivating their prior knowledge)
• Task cycle: task, planning, report/presentation (This is the main stage of the taskbased approach, where students work on completing the task. This may involveworking in pairs or small groups to complete a task, such as making a phone callor writing a letter.)• Language Focus: analysis, feedback, practice (During this stage, the teacher maymonitor the students’ progress and provide feedback and support as needed.After completing the task, the teacher may guide students in reflecting on thelanguage used during the task and identifying areas for improvement.)Tweaking TEFL activities towards TBLT (Willis 2007):• Does the activity engage the learners’ interest?• Is there a primary focus on meaning?• Is there an outcome?• Is success judged in terms of outcome?• Does the activity relate to real-world activities?
Exercise-Task-Continuum (Ellis 1994)• Task principles: A task…o Is a work plan. The actual process can differ from it.o Involves linguistic activity.o Requires primary attention to be on message.o Allows learners to select the linguistic resources they will use.o Requires learners to function primarily as language users rather thanlearners.o Has clearly defined non-linguistic outcome.Three definite factors/techniques:• Inserting a gap into the task (In these activities, students work in pairs or groupsto complete a task that requires them to exchange information and communicateeffectively. E.g., students may be given different pictures or descriptions of ascene and must ask and answer questions to full in the missing information.)o Informationo Reasoningo Opinion• Learners are allowed to use whatever resources are available to them• Authentic communication (e.g. role-plays)
7.) Bilingual education• CLIL (with language teaching)• Immersion teaching (without language teaching)Focus on Form(s) (emphasizes the study and practice of grammar and vocabulary, with astrong emphasis on accuracy and correctness in language use):• Teaching focuses mainly on grammatical structures• L2 is divided into linguistic elements in advance• The course follows this pattern (from easy to more difficult structures)
Focus on meaning (emphasizes the use of language in authentic communication activities andtasks, with a focus on meaning and is based on the idea that learners acquire language throughmeaningful communication and interaction rather than through isolated grammar andvocabulary practice) :• Teacher focuses on content and communication• Teacher does not teach explicit grammar knowledge• Teacher focuses more of internal knowledge of the students rather than the teacher’sexternal syllabus/methods (e.g. talking about the weekend in class)o Students pick up language incidentally and implicitlyFocus on form (based on interaction hypothesis by Long 1981; combines focus on accuracywith a focus on communicative language use and emphasizes the study and practice of grammarand vocabulary in context, within the context of authentic communication activities and tasks.Goal to develop the ability to produce accurate and error-free language use):• Teaching focuses on meaning• Course includes explicit/implicit teaching of grammar and other linguistic structureswhenever the students are ready and need it• Benefits:o Learner-centered approacho Bears the developmental readiness of the learners in mindo Developmentally-moderated syllabus (e.g. talking with the students about theweekend then you need to use past-tense, but the teacher then notices whensomeone does not use the correct form that everyone has understood it or not)
Possible test questions to TBLT:Name three principles that help define the concept of “task”• L2 interactions• Authentic language use• Involves rather a focus on meaning than a focus on formName three principles that are imperative for TBLT• Communication is the primary goal/linguistic activity• Language is learned through use/should rather be language users than language learners• Task should be authentic and meaningfulTask vs ExerciseTask• Primary focus on trying to communicate• There is a gap• Learners use own linguistic resources• Successful performance = outcome of task achievedExercise• Primary focus on using language correctly• There is no gap• Text manipulating (filling in blanks, substituting words)• Successful performance = accurate use of target feature
Grammar teachingNarrow definition: The presentation and practice of discrete grammatical structures.Broad definition (Ellis 2006): Grammar teaching involves any instructional technique thatdraws learners’ attention to some specific grammatical form in such a way that it helps themeither to understand it meta linguistically and/or process it in comprehension and/or productionso that they can internalize it.Erwerbsorientierte Methode (Ziegésar & Ziegésar 1998)Phase 1: Demonstration• As in L1 acquisition the learners have to experience the new linguistic means asan instrument of communication.• The communicative situation has to be clear and unambigous, the new structurebecomes comprehensible input (Krashen 1985)• The communicative situation should be a context in which the new structure istypically used• Trivial texts that simply present the new structures and do not contain anyauthentic information should be avoided.Phase 2: Understand and respond
The learners hear and read the new structure repeatedly (presented in oral orwritten form)o Learners recognize the language material, internalize and understand itsform(s) and meaning(s).o The pupils provide evidence for their comprehension process in verbaland nonverbal actions which may or may not use the “new” linguisticstructuresPhase 3: Reproduction• Keeping the syntactical structure of the original utterance in short-term memory,learners only have to modify the grammatical structure in focus:o T: You won’t need a passport if you go to Britain:o L: That’s wrong. You will need a passport if you go to Britain.Optional phase: Clarification• Implicit vs explicit instructionso Implicit: Learners build their own hypotheses about production andusage rules.o Explicit: clarification is an option, an inductive method is recommended:the teacher guides the learners through the process of developing rulesand explanations on their own.
Phase 4: Production• Encouraging learners to speak, using the grammar features in communicativetasks.• Precondition: Learners must have internalized the new structures, developing astate of awareness for how the structure is used correctly.Vocabulary teaching:• High vocabulary targets need to be set and pursued• Different approaches may be appropriate• Establishing the meaning-form link is essential• It is crucial to consolidate it with repeated exposures• Begin enhancing knowledge of different aspects of word knowledge• Maintain maximum amount of engagement with lexical itemsTheoretical rationale: Refers to the underlying principles and theoretical perspectives thatinform a particular approach to language teaching. It provides a theoretical basis for
language teaching and learning, guiding teachers in their selection of materials, activities,and methods, and helping learners to understand the principles underlying the approach.Developing and assessing language skillsListening & reading (cognitive processes):Facets of listening ability• Decoding language in real time (sound/word recognition; phrase/sentenceparsing)• Constructing a mental representation of the information conveyedBottom-up vs top-down processing (Listening process)• Bottom-up: we use our knowledge of the language (phonology, lexis, syntax,semantics, discourse) to make sense of sounds we hear. The information we useis contained in the speech itself. We segment speech into sounds which westructure in terms of words, phrases, sentences.• Top-down: refer to the knowledge a listener brings to a text. This is thereforesometimes also referred to as ‘inside the head’ information. Processing textspresupposes a great deal of non-linguistic general knowledge about the world.Facets of listening (and reading) ability• How do listeners construct a mental representation of the listening text?o Recognizeo Retrieveo Infer Informationo Interpret
What is unique to listening?• Listener has no control over the speed of delivery, text is “fleeting”.Developing (and selecting) useful assessment tasks• Reliability: consistency of measurement (tasks need to be consistent, whichmeans that all of the test tasks should be focused on the same skill area ratherthan asking for many different things at the same time, e.g. ask only questionsregarding this specific text)• Construct validity: the extent to which test scores can be interpreted asindicators of the abilities (constructs) that are supposedly measured (e.g. is thistest really a listening task or rather a task about logical thinking?)• Authenticity: the degree to which a given language task reflects “real-world”language use.• Interactiveness: the extent of involvement of the test taker with the task,drawing on his/her language ability.
Impact: the various ways a test’s use affects society, an educational system, andthe individuals within them. (refers to social consequences, how are my learnersand I engaged in the aspect of learning in the classroom? “Herr Rossa, kommtdas in der Arbeit?” should I invest my time into studying this? Impacts the useof the classtest; What impact does the test have on the learner’s life? E.g. youneed it in order to go to Uni or for a Visa)• Practicality: “Practicality is the relationship between the resources that will berequired in design, development, and use of the test and the resources that willbe available for these activities.” (Bachmann & Palmer, 1996) (think about theresources that are available to the school and you personally as a teacher andwhat your goal is to design your test; create fair testing environment)Tasks formats: constructed response• Aural cloze (fill in the gap)• Listening crid (fill in the table)• Short answer (name 6 criteria of…)• (oral) summary (give a summary of the lecture)Task formats: selected response• True/false• Multiple choice• Matching (e.g. names/labels with people/objects in pictures)
Developing and assessing language skills: productive (speaking, writing)Teaching productive/interactive skills• Role of output in language learning: noticing, hypothesis-testing, reflection(Swain 1985)Communicative Competence• Ability to use the language accurately, freely, fluently, spontaneously incommunicative situations.Continua of approaches:• Form – meaning• Accuracy – fluency• Reproduce – createFacets of L2 speaking ability (Levelt 1989)• Conceptualize content of message• Formulate sounds, words, phrases• Articulate utterances, using articulatory organs• Self-monitoring speechTypes of speaking activities• Oral production• Spoken interaction• Oral mediationSpeaking in the EFL classroom
Supportive atmosphere: offering language support to express ideas in the L2(concrete language support through the teacher, e.g. how the students could saysth.)• Encourage learners to take risks and express personal meanings and ideas (trycreatively how to express their ideas and opinions about certain topics)• Teacher needs to use the target language flexibly and naturally (learners pick upon the language presented to them)• Tasks and topics should relate to learners’ interests and provide clearcommunicative (and interpersonal) purposes (the suggested tasks should relateto the learners’ interests and have to provide the answer to “why are we talkingabout this?”, “Are we having an actual talk or are we pretending?”)Facets of L2 writing ability (Weigle 2002)• Plan (organize, set goals for text)• Translate• Review• MonitorDeveloping (and selecting) useful speaking tasks for the EFL classroom• Is the task appropriately challenging?• Does the task allow (some) freedom and creativity?• Does the task elicit (relevant) vocabulary (lexical items) and grammar (linguisticstructures)• Does the task include a “pre-phase” which activates relevant backgroundknowledge and allows for language recall?• Does the task provide meaningful context? Does the task allow for spontaneouslanguage use?
Difference between speaking and writing• Speaking is usually reciprocal (immediate and possibly simultaneouslycontributions by more than one speaker)• Writing is more predictable, more time for planningWriting tasks• Creative writing• Genre writing• Prepare, produce, revise• Assess: content, task completion, communicative performance, formWriting in the EFL classroom (Grabe/Kaplan 1996)• Teachers need to…o Show a positive attitudeo Provide a wide range of opportunities for writingo Support students in making writing a collaborative and cooperative efforto Be aware that writing takes time to developo Provide feedback on content and form
Intercultural language abilityComponents of communicative competence (Savignon 2001)• Communicative competenceo Sociocultural: the ability to understand and use language appropriatelyin different social contexts, taking into account factors such as theparticipants, the topic and the setting.o Strategic: the ability to use different communication strategies tocompensate for limitations in one’s language abilities, such as usinggestures, circumlocution, or asking for clarification.o Discourse: the ability to understand and produce extended stretches oflanguage, such as conversations. It refers to how language is organizedand used to create meaning in a particular context.o Grammatical: the knowledge of the grammar, vocabulary, and syntax ofa language, as well as the ability to use them correctly.§ Knowledge acquired in contextCriticism of communicative competence:• The problem with the notion of communicative competence is that it only takesin account how native speakers interact with each other. But it takes not inaccount how speakers of different cultural origins interact with each other.o Cc goes beyond just knowing the grammar and vocabulary of a language.It involves understanding the social and cultural context ofcommunication and being able to use language flexible and appropriateto achieve communicative goals
Intercultural communicative competence (Byram 1997)• Skills of interpreting and relatingo The ability to interpret documents or events from another culture andbeing able to explain and relate it to documents from one’s own culture.• Attitudeso Openness and curiosityo Willing to be able to suspend one’s own behaviors and beliefs and toanalyze them from another culture’s point of view.• Skills of discovering and interactingo Ability to discover new knowledge of a culture and cultural practices andthe ability to operate knowledge, attitude and skills under the constrainsof real-time communication.• Knowledgeo About social groups and their cultures in one’s own county and in theirown and of the processes of interaction at individual and societal level.• Critical cultural awarenesso Ability to identify and evaluate critically and on the basis of explicitcriteria perspectives, products and practices in one’s own culture andcountry.o Ability to negotiate, mediate and interact in intercultural exchanges inaccordance with explicit criteria by drawing upon one’s own knowledge,skills and attitudes
The developmental model of intercultural sensitivity (Bennet 1993)How does intercultural competence develop?• Ethnocentric stageso Denial§ Other cultures do not really matter§ Do not want to know about other cultureso Defense§ When it is impossible to deny other cultures and world views,then trying to save the own culture and upholding it as thesuperior§ Defending own world view against others (defend what in youropinion is right)o Minimizations§ We are all the same and we can get along somehow, culturaldifferences are not relevant§ Minimizing cultural differences, but you do not want to do whatis necessary to relativize your own opinion and perspective byaccepting that people from other cultures may view the worlddifferently.
Ethnorelative stageso Acceptance§ Fully accept cultural differenceso Adaptation§ Adapting new cultural rules§ Thinking becomes slightly more like the culture’s thinking youadapted ono Integration§ Integrate into the new culture e.g. by living abroad§ Multicultural personDifferences• The one type of response circles around and starts from their own culturalperspective, typically seeing it as the norm, while the other culture represents asort of deviation from that normOn the road to ICC: intercultural learning• Learning about/from/with others about:o Cultures, values, attitudes, stereotypeso Differences, conflicts, developmentso Taking on individual perspectivesIno Doing (exchange) projectso Reading novels, poems, non-fictional textso Looking at photos, tables, chartso Watching film, listening to songs
Responding to texts: a process-oriented approach• Pre-reading tasks are designed to make learners curious about the (literary) text:expectations, awareness• While-reading tasks: guiding questions, charts, prompts, reading logs. Learnersengage with the characters, try to understand why they act a certain way (changeof perspective)• Post-reading tasks: speaking and writing about the text in role-plays,discussions, book reports, etc.Creating an English-speaking world in the classroom: using (new) media• Multimedia tools help to turn the classroom into a learner-centered environment• Electronic literacy (Shetzer &Washington 2000): the ability to find, organizeand make use of information• Films, video-clips, podcasts, chat/e-mail-projects• Language learning software for individualized skill training