Designing foreign language curricula and pedagogy in terms of meaning-making: The application of languaculture and designs of meaning

Date
2019-01-01
Authors
Blyth, Carl
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Cengage
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2019
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153
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175
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This autobiographical chapter describes the challenges of designing and teaching courses that construe language learning in terms of intercultural meaning-making. In particular, the chapter recounts how a foreign language specialist applied the concepts of languaculture (Agar, 1994; Risager, 2006, 2007) and Designs of Meaning (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009, 2015; New London Group, 1996; Paesani, Allen, & Dupuy, 2016) to the development and implementation of an undergraduate course in French linguistics and a graduate course in applied linguistics. The concept of languaculture helped the educator to adopt a transnational frame that allowed his undergraduate students to “operate between languages” while the concept of Designs of Meaning helped him to teach “differences in meaning, mentality, and worldview…” (MLA Report, 2007, p. 4) as a process of designing and redesigning texts. These same concepts proved instrumental in helping him develop a new graduate course in applied linguistics that emphasized language as social practice. The chapter ends with a discussion of the three main challenges that face educators who wish to adopt post-structuralist, meaning-based approaches to languages and cultures: (1) the continued reliance on grammar as the major organizing principle for language curricula; (2) the widespread use of commercially produced materials that perpetuate structuralist conceptions of language and culture; and (3) the need for the creation and curation of more meaning-based materials.
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Blyth, C. (2019). Designing foreign language curricula and pedagogy in terms of meaning-making: The application of languaculture and designs of meaning. The American Association of University Supervisors, Coordinators and Directors of Foreign Languages Programs (AAUSC), 153-175. http://hdl.handle.net/102015/69796
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