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    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Katz, Stacey ; Watzinger-Tharp, Johanna
    What do we mean when we talk about grammar? What exactly is grammar? And how should it be taught? This chapter begins with a discussion of why the concept of grammar teaching is problematic, outlining the attitudes that often emerge when the topic is broached. Next, it highlights the various types of grammar that exist—prescriptive, academic, pedagogical, and instructional— focusing on the needs of scholars, learners,and teachers.The later sections of this
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    Developing advanced formal language abilities along a genre-based continuum
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Maxim, Hiram H.
    Advanced grammar instruction in collegiate foreign language (FL) departments typically consists of a review of the grammatical canon, often relying on an advanced grammar textbook that both reviews and expands the traditional paradigms studied in lower-level instruction. Holding firm to the belief that reviewing these paradigms yet again will finally result in the mastery long considered necessary for upper-level study, this approach nevertheless fails to take into account the (con)textual nature of language use that permeates all levels of language use and that inherently requires an inextricable link between grammar and meaning, and between function and form.This chapter addresses this lack of textuality in upper-level grammar instruction by exploring how formal language development at the advanced level in one departmental context is treated from a genre-based perspective, in that the language features inherent to particular genres considered appropriate for advanced language instruction provide the basis for developing students’ formal accuracy. Specifically, this approach adheres to the belief that the development of advanced language abilities proceeds along a continuum that moves from the narrative, verbal-oriented language use emphasized at the lower levels to more argumentative, nominal dominated forms of expression.As a result, this narrative–argumentative continuum serves as the basis for selecting and sequencing genres across the curriculum.The chapter focuses on one upper-level course that was recently redesigned with this continuum in mind and that used the genres selected for the course as blueprints for the students to follow to develop more linguistically advanced forms of expression.
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    A conceptual approach to promoting L2 grammatical development: Implications for language program directos
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Negueruela, Eduardo
    Based on Vygotsky’s theory of concept development (Vygotsky,1986) and Gal’perin’s (1992) systemic–theoretical instruction (STI), it is argued that second language (L2) development, and specifically the teaching of L2 grammar, should be constructed and defined as a conceptual process.The central moment in L2 development is the use of the concept (i.e., meaning categories) as a tool for learner understanding. L2 pedagogical activities should emerge from this fundamental principle.This chapter outlines four basic pedagogical principles for instantiating a conceptual approach for the teaching of L2 grammar. First, the notion of pedagogical grammar is situated and defined in connection to prescriptive, descriptive, metalinguistic, and linguistic grammars.Next, a conceptual approach is proposed based on finding pedagogical activities and classroom dynamics that foster “semantic reflection”—that is, thinking through concepts, and not just about concepts. Instead of teachers presenting grammatical issues, such as the numerous rules for the use of Spanish definite and indefinite articles, conceptual categories should be the basis for teaching the meaning of grammar.A conceptual approach to teaching grammar leads to the internalization of a more sophisticated semantic understanding of grammatical meanings, thereby promoting learners’ ability to use effectively and creatively relevant grammatical features in spontaneously produced written and oral discourse.
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    Applications of corpus-based linguistics to second language instruction: Lexical grammar and data-driven learning
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Kerr, Betsy J.
    Although the use of corpora and concordancing as a research method to discover patterns of language use in real-world language data is somewhat familiar to applied linguists (e.g., Di Vito, 1997; Celce-Murcia & Larsen-Freeman, 1998), the potential pedagogical uses of these tools appear to be unfamiliar to practitioners in second language education in the United States, especially in comparison to their European counterparts and to ESL specialists. This chapter describes some of the potential uses of these technologies in second language education and their relevance to language program directors and classroom teachers. In addition to describing potential uses of corpora and concordancing (also referred to as data-driven learning), it argues for a greater emphasis on vocabulary acquisition and a better integration of lexical and grammatical aspects of language instruction, following certain insights from the field of corpus linguistics. Of special interest is the notion of the centrality of lexical phrases in speech production, as articulated in Sinclair’s lexical grammar and later brought to bear on second language instruction in Lewis’s lexical approach. In addition, language program directors should be aware of the ability of corpus-based analyses to describe more accurately native-speaker usage and, therefore, to contribute to the formulation of appropriate pedagogical norms for grammatical instruction.With respect to classroom instruction, the chapter illustrates through sample activities (in English and French) how online corpora and concordancers can be used to provide student-centered consciousness- raising activities based on authentic language. An appendix suggests appropriate online concordancers for French, German, and Spanish.
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    Socio-pragmatic competence in Russian: How input is not enough
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Hacking, Jane F.
    This chapter reports results from a study on the acquisition of socio-pragmatic competence by adult learners of Russian and, based on these results, proposes concrete methods for integrating instruction in socio-pragmatic aspects of L2 into the language classroom. Learners in the study had all spent 18 to 24 months living in a Russian-speaking environment and were highly proficient in Russian.They were given a discours completion task that focused on three types of speech act: apology, refusal, and request. Native-speaker ratings of participant performance indicated that, despite their extensive in-country experience, participants’ performance diverged from that of native speakers. The ratings also revealed that the speech acts tested produced varying results. For example, participants performed least well on apology scenarios.The chapter suggests reasons for the varied performance across speech act type.This assessment and rater comments were used to formulate a concrete approach for presenting socio-pragmatics in the classroom.The plan proposed consists of five types of activities, which can be adapted to various proficiency levels depending on the student population.
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    Structured input and textual enhancement: Impacts on L2 production in French
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Farley, Andrew P. ; Peart, Silvia ; Enns, Erica
    Textual enhancement and structured input are two focus-on-form techniques that are prevalent in the literature on classroom-based second language acquisition and instruction. Research on the impact of textual enhancement (TE) has yielded mixed results.Although some researchers have found an effect for enhancement, others have failed to find any. In contrast, numerous studies comparing instruction containing structured input (SI) with other treatments have consistently shown equal or more beneficial effects for SI.The study described in this chapter examined whether the beneficial effects of structured input are heightened if features of TE are included in the treatment. In particular, it examined the comparative effects of SI and TESI on L2 production of the French imparfait. In this study, a sentence-level production task was implemented to assess performance before, immediately following, and 10 days after treatment. Potential implications for language program directors are also addressed.
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    Rethinking a focus on grammar: From drills to processing instruction-data from the French subjunctive
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Wong, Wynne
    This chapter first discusses how views about grammar instruction have changed over time as research in second language acquisition (SLA) has helped members of the profession develop a fuller understanding of how languages are acquired. Processing instruction, a type of focus-on-form instruction that uses structured input activities, is presented as an example of one type of grammar instruction that is grounded in theory and research in SLA. Following a review of current research in PI, data from a study on the French subjunctive are provided.This study examined the relative effects of processing instruction (PI), traditional instruction (TI), meaningful output instruction (MOI), structured input (SI), and explicit information (EI) on the development of the French subjunctive measured by a sentence-level interpretation and production task. Results of the interpretation task reveal that there was no difference between the performance of the PI and MOI groups, and that both groups fared significantly better than the TI and EI groups in terms of performance, with no difference found between the TI an EI groups.There were also no significant differences between the performance of the PI, MOI, and SI groups, or between the performance of the SI and EI groups. On the production task, the MOI group had significantly better performance than the TI group, but there is no difference between the performance of the TI and EI groups. PI did not appear to be significantly different from any of the other four treatments (MOI,TI,SI, EI) in terms of effectiveness.In conclusion, the chapter suggests new directions in PI research and implications for program language direction.
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    Conceptions of L2 phonology: Integrating cognitive and sociolinguistic approaches to research and teaching
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Moyer, Alene
    The last decade has seen a dramatic resurgence of interest in phonology in second language (L2) acquisition and learning, in terms of both language knowledgeand language use.The issue of what constitutes phonological knowledge is typically addressed by the cognitive, psycholinguistically oriented branch ofSLA research, which tends toward a “deficit” view of L2 phonology. In other words, it focuses on what the learner does not know or cannot do regarding perception and/or production of new sounds as compared to a native speaker. A competing paradigm is the sociolinguistic view, which concentrates on language use and the roles played by such individual factors as identity and assimilation for long-term phonological attainment.This research probes the extent to which contextualized L2 experience and learner intention contribute to overall degree of foreign accent and intelligibility. Despite a growing body of empirical work in such areas, the dominant foreign language pedagogical approaches of the day have little to say about the importance of accent for communicative fluency. Lacking any current, specific standards, phonological knowledge and performance skills are left to individual teachers to address as they deem practical and necessary.Acknowledging these gaps between theory and practice, the discussion in this chapter underscores the difficulty of establishing a one-size-fits-all approach to L2 phonology. It is argued that individual learner needs, local program objectives, and teacher training all affect phonological fluency goals.The chapter highlights several areas of convergence in recent research that serve as important reference points for program administrators hoping to establish phonological fluency goals, including (1) the age factor and language experience as a predictors of accent; (2) the classroom as a logical site of segmental and suprasegmental practice as well as consciousness- raising regarding the sociolinguistic significance of accent; and (3) the potential of technological tools to enhance phonetic perception and production skills.
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    A grammar of L2 pragmatics: Issues in learning and teaching
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Koike, Dale A.
    A grammar represents knowledge of given linguistic forms and rules for their use.This chapter addresses a broad conceptualization of a grammar of second language (L2) pragmatics and issues for teaching and learning.Three aspects of a grammar of L2 pragmatics are discussed in the chapter. First, a focus on the larger communicative goals of pragmatic instruction—not simply on a set of speech acts but aiming for overall successful interaction between learners and native speakers—requires an articulation between speech act knowledge and face-to-face conversation.This articulation in turn, entails a degree of target language expectations of how coherent and cohesive talk should flow. Second, the chapter addresses the kinds of knowledge—grammatical, pragmatic, and sociocultural— that are required to communicate successfully.Third, it explores the knowledge of the linguistic variation inherent in speech communities, such as registers and other contextual factors like gender and social dynamics.These three issues are discussed considering the relevant research in the respective areas.The chapter concludes with suggestions for a usage-based, contextualized approach to an L2 grammar of pragmatics.
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    Input enhancement and L2 grammatical development: What the research reveals
    (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2008-01-01) Leow, Ronald P.
    The role of input enhancement (IE; Sharwood Smith, 1991, 1993) in L2 grammatical development remains a controversial issue in the SLA field.Adding to the inconclusive findings is the broad definition of the term “input enhancement” found in the SLA literature and the various methodological approaches taken to its operationalization and measurement. On the one hand, some instructional strands of research appear to share Sharwood Smith’s broadest definition of input enhancement, which conflates the independent variable enhancement with other instructional independent variables. On the other hand, other strands of research methodologically tease out the variable enhancement and compare the effects of this variable to its absence on L2 development. This chapter examines these two substrands coexisting within the concept of input enhancement to provide a clearer picture of the role of input enhancement in L2 grammatical development. More specifically, the chapter critically assesses Sharwood Smith’s concept of input enhancement, which appears to have undergone a theoretical change from its original notion of consciousness- raising in relation to the role of awareness in his postulation and also a change from a product to a process perspective. It also critically evaluates separately the two substrands, placing a strong emphasis on the research methodologies employed in these studies in relation to their internal and external validities; it then compares the differences between these substrands. Finally, the chapter provides informed suggestions, based on the appropriate robustness of research findings, that teachers may wish to consider to understand and evaluate the potential contribution that input enhancement may have regarding learners’ L2 grammatical development.