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Language Resource Center

Events of 2016-2017

This year's events are co-sponsored by the Einaudi Center for International Studies, the Institute for European Studies, the East Asia Program, the South Asia Program, the Southeast Asia Program and the Departments of Romance Studies, Near Eastern Studies, German Studies and Asian Studies.

March 23

Thursday, March 23, 2017
4pm followed by reception

TBLT and Foreign Language Writing

Andrea Revesz, Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics
Department of Culture, Communication, and Media UCL Institute of Education, University College London

With the growing popularity of task-based approaches to language teaching, the field of instructed second language (L2) acquisition has seen a growing interest in task design features as a means to facilitate L2 performance and development. However, the vast majority of task-related studies have focused on the oral modality, and research into the effects of task features on L2 writing is limited. In addition, previous studies have primarily examined the product of writing (e.g., linguistic complexity and accuracy); little attention has been paid to writing processes such as fluency, pausing and revision during writing. In this talk, drawing on my own and colleagues' work, I will introduce recent empirical research that has begun to address these gaps. I will discuss and demonstrate how manipulating the design features of communicative tasks and the conditions under which they are performed may help facilitate L2 writing performance and development. In particular, I will show the extent to which providing support with content and task repetition can influence writing behaviors and text quality. I will also highlight the methodological advantages of triangulating product- and process-based measures. Finally, I will consider the pedagogical implications of the research discussed.
April 17

Monday, April 17, 2017
4pm followed by reception

Language learning through Viewing Television: In and Out of the Classroom

Michael Rodgers, Assistant Professor
School of Linguistics and Language Studies Carleton University

The language learning that goes on outside the classroom is an area that has recently begun to receive increased attention. One approach to language learning that is well suited to taking place outside the classroom is viewing second-language television. Although there is a large amount of research that has investigated learning through written materials, there is a considerably smaller, but growing, amount of research that has focused on learning through television programs. This is surprising because L2 television programs have great potential as a resource for language learning. People tend to spend a great deal of time watching L1 television programs. In the North American context, Americans and Canadians watch television five times more than they read in their L1. This suggests that in our L1, we encounter a greater amount of input through viewing television than we encounter through reading. This may be why research has shown that language learners are highly motivated to learn through viewing L2 television programs. There is a role for television viewing both inside and outside of the classroom. Extensive viewing, a natural companion to extensive reading, should begin in the classroom to provide the support that learners initially need to understand L2 discourse designed for L1 viewers. Through a program of regular instructor-supported viewing, students may find that they are able to understand a program to the point that they enjoy it and then move on to viewing autonomously at home. This presentation will look at research findings that language instructors can utilise to guide learners to make use of L2 television for language learning. Topics that will be explored include: choosing programs for learners, comprehension gains from successive viewing, vocabulary gains from television viewing, support for vocabulary learning from imagery, the use of captions, learner attitudes towards extensive viewing, and pedagogical considerations of these topics.

Suggested Reading: Webb, S. (2014). Extensive viewing: Language learning through watching television. In D. Nunan & J. C. Richards (Eds.), Language Learning Beyond the Classroom (pp. 159-168). London: Routledge. doi:10.4324/9781315883472
May 11

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Noyes Lodge 9am-12pm, followed by lunch at Noyes Lodge

LRC Workshop

The workshop will feature a range of topics, from a speaker about using iBooks for students to create multimedia assignments; to updates on Playposit, WAL and the LRC move; a talk by the Language House Director followed by discussion; other information about translation services contracted by Cornell; services for student-student language exchange.