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Beyond the curriculum: Extended discourse practice through self-access pragmatics simulations

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Title:Beyond the curriculum: Extended discourse practice through self-access pragmatics simulations
Authors:Sydorenko, Tetyana
Jones, Zachary
Daurio, Phoebe
Thorne, Steven
Keywords:Self-Access Pragmatics Instruction
Implicit vs. Explicit Instruction
Individual Differences
Date Issued:01 Jun 2020
Publisher:University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center
Center for Language & Technology
(co-sponsored by Center for Open Educational Resources and Language Learning, University of Texas at Austin)
Citation:Sydorenko, T., Jones, Z. W., Daurio, P., & Thorne, S. L. (2020). Beyond the curriculum: Extended discourse practice through self-access pragmatics simulations. Language Learning & Technology, 24(2), 48–69.
Abstract:Usage-based linguistics posits that communicative functions, including pragmatics, are at the core of language (Tomasello, 1992). It is surprising, then, that pragmatics is rarely systematically included in second language curricula (e.g., Bardovi-Harlig, 2017), especially since pragmatics instruction has been shown to significantly contribute to pragmatic development (e.g., Taguchi & Roever, 2017). Addressing this issue, the present study investigates learning outcomes and processes in self-access technology-enhanced instructional simulations for pragmatics that do not require classroom or teacher time. Importantly, these simulations include 1.) oral practice of extended discourse and 2.) feedback—two underexplored aspects of pragmatics instruction (e.g., Holden & Sykes, 2013; Sydorenko, Daurio, & Thorne, 2018).
Two versions of the self-access simulations were examined: implicit-only instruction (15 participants) and implicit combined with explicit instruction (11 participants). The quantitative analysis of learners’ production data and self-reported noticing revealed that both groups were similarly able to extract relevant (but varying) pragmatics features from instruction. The qualitative analysis, however, revealed that individual learner differences may be a critical factor in the effectiveness of implicit versus explicit instruction. The present study also illustrates how time spans and competition between cognitive resources affect pragmatics learning. In sum, this research informs further development of self-access pragmatics materials.
Appears in Collections: Volume 24 Number 2, June 2020 Special Issue:Technology-enhanced L2 Instructional Pragmatics

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