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    Expanding visions for collegiate advanced foreign language learning
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Maxim, Hiram H.
    This paper examines the prevailing departmental, professional, and research practices in collegiate foreign language (FL) learning and argues that, as it is currently conceptualized, collegiate FL learning needlessly limits the opportunities for developing advanced language abilities. In response to this predicament, alternative approaches to FL learning are proposed that center around more comprehensive and integrated curricular planning that recognizes the longterm nature of FL learning. Specifically, in contrast with the current privileging of spoken language, individualistic approaches to language use, and naturalistic learning, this paper advocates a genre- and discourse-based orientation to FL learning that reflects a social understanding of language use.
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    Fostering advanced-level language abilities in foreign language graduate programs: Applications of genre theory
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Crane, Cori ; Liamkina, Olga ; Ryshina-Pankova, Marianna
    Findings from two surveys (Spring 2002) regarding the perceived needs of graduate students from US. Foreign language (FL) doctoral programs in fostering advanced second language (L2) development are discussed. Participants include thirteen FL graduate students, nine FL program coordinators, and one FL department chair. Analysis of the surveys reveals (1) the central role lower-level language teaching plays in FL graduate students' L2 development; (2) the need among graduate students to understand L2 ability in terms of contextualized language use; and (3) graduate students' desire for greater departmental support of their L2 abilities. The paper argues for the construct of genre as a means for conceptualizing and promoting advanced-level language development. Genres graduate students will likely encounter as future members of the profession are presented. Two case studies of graduate students' experiences with the genre précis further illustrate how a genre approach can foster L2 academic abilities. General recommendations for FL graduate programs are offered.
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    "What's business got to do with it?" The unexplored potential of business language courses for advanced foreign language learning
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Weigert, Astrid
    tAdvanced-level foreign language business courses have an as yet unexplored potential to contribute to advanced students' literacy and discourse development. The first part of the paper highlights current limitations for the development of new approaches for advanced-level content courses as they present themselves within the SLA research community, within departmental structures, and within the practitioner community of business language instructors.The second part of the paper offers a theme and genre-based approach to the design of business language courses. Examples are drawn from a thematic unit on international mergers developed for a Business German course at Georgetown University.
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    Study abroad for advanced foreign language majors: Optimal duration for developing complex structures
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Isabelli, Casilde A.
    SLA research has explored the many benefits of study abroad programs. However, there is limited research that explores syntactic gains made abroad by the advanced learner and addresses the question: How does length of stay abroad affect language acquisition, particularly advanced L2 features? The present study addresses this question from a UG perspective by evaluating 31 advanced learners of Spanish L2 who spent an academic year abroad in Barcelona. The development and acquisition of the properties of the null subject parameter were measured at one month (representing a summer abroad), four months (representing a semester abroad), and nine months (representing an academic year abroad). A discussion follows on some additional factors that need to be considered when sending an advanced language learner on a study abroad program.
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    Heritage speakers' potential for high-level language proficiency
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Kagan, Olga ; Dillon, Kathleen
    tThe paper examines the conditions under which heritage students of Russian might achieve advanced or higher proficiency within an undergraduate program. While the research reports on the needs of Russian heritage speakers,its conclusions are relevant for curriculum development in other less commonly taught languages. The proposed matrix for a heritage program in Russian includes the following components: proper placement; a multi-year sequence in an uninterrupted, comprehensive curriculum; heritage learner-specific instructional materials; instructors trained in heritage language acquisition; a home/community native speaker environment; and a metalinguistic framework that raises awareness of the importance of grammatical accuracy and register In discussing this matrix we analyze the prevailing/traditional attitudes of the teaching profession towards heritage learners and provide information about a number of studies that have suggested the proposed matrix.
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    Heritage language speakers and upper-division language instruction: Findings from a Spanish linguistic program
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Villa, Daniel J.
    Teaching upper-division courses in Spanish linguistics presents a two-pronged dilemma: students entering the courses (1) have had little literacy education in the target language in general and (2) have had little or no familiarity with the science of linguistics in particular In confronting this situation, the article describes how one collegiate program was able to use to advantage the particular knowledge bases, linguistic and otherwise, that heritage speakers of Spanish can bring to upper division courses in Spanish lin-guistics. It examines the theoretical underpinnings of heritage language pedagogy, explores applications to the teaching of heritage students in upperdivision courses, describes the program design of a linguistics program that explicitly draws on heritage students' abilities, and highlights some consequences of the chosen program design. The article also discusses the concept of literacy, particularly how writing in Spanish plays a role in students' ability to develop a critical approach to studying Spanish linguistics.
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    Fostering advanced L2 literacy: A genre-based, cognitive approach
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Byrnes, Heidi ; Sprang, Katherine A.
    The paper argues for the need and opportunity to consider advanced second language abilities as part of the curricular and pedagogical vision of collegiate foreign language departments. It builds the context for such an expanded goal by focusing on the notion of literacy which, together with a genre-oriented and task-based approach that explicitly incorporates the cognitive abilities of literate adult learners, can support the required programmatic decision-making. It exemplifies such an approach within an integrated undergraduate FL curriculum, first, by showing how early advanced L2 learners can learn to make rich narrative choices in the area of place and time within story telling and, second, by demonstrating how even more advanced learners can acquire the ability to make choices in two major forms of meaning-making, congruent and synoptic forms of semiosis, by working with the micro-genre public political speech. It concludes with a model for continua of developing multiple literacies in collegiate FL programs.
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    A template for advanced learner tasks: Staging genre reading and cultural literacy through the précis
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Swaffar, Janet
    This chapter illustrates how to use the précis as a template for pedagogical tasks that integrate comprehension and production practice in ways that can enable learners to identify the messages, obligatory textual moves, and lan-guage features of various genres. Exemplified with reference to both fictional and nonfictional genres that are thematically related to the novel Like Water for Chocolate, précis tasks are shown to originate in terms of specific genre features, such as distinctions between formal and informal, private and public discourses, and the language situation (sender/receiver relationship). Iargue that only after identifying characteristics of the media presentation,genre conventions, and handling of stereotypes are students in a position to analyze and articulate textual information in a culturally appropriate fashion. Examples also show how students who compare key differences between various thematically-related genres can construct verifiable bases for drawing inferences about the broader cultural implications of such changes,thereby becoming competent advanced users of a second language.
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    Literacy and advanced foreign language learning: Rethinking the curriculum
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Kern, Richard G.
    Advanced level language learning has to do with much more than 'language' per se. It requires familiarization with new frames of interpretation, new genres, new social practices, and new ways of thinking in and about the language in question.This chapter argues that these kinds of familiarization are largely issues of literacy, and it explores ways in which literacy can be used as an organizing principle to design language curricula that problematize the linguistic, cognitive, and social relationships that link readers, writers,texts, and culture. Sample literacy project ideas are presented in the Appendix to exemplify this problematizing approach to language teaching.
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    Introduction: Creating sites for collegiate advanced foreign language learning
    (Thompson & Heinle, 2003-01-01) Byrnes, Heidi ; Maxim, Hiram H.