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Authentic language and multimedia design Stephen Woulds Leeds City College / University of Leeds Why? to meet local language needs How? through linguistic.

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Presentation on theme: "Authentic language and multimedia design Stephen Woulds Leeds City College / University of Leeds Why? to meet local language needs How? through linguistic."— Presentation transcript:

1 authentic language and multimedia design Stephen Woulds Leeds City College / University of Leeds Why? to meet local language needs How? through linguistic ‘undercover’ work

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3 ‘there are rules of use without which the rules of grammar would be useless’ (Hymes: 1971) iAy8

4 Contemporary picture Even after the communicative competence model of Hymes, behavioural methods of language teaching are still evident where we see greater emphasis on the mechanics of language, the meta-language of grammar, and less on the pragmatic nature of language.

5 Context: a novice on language “I no want to speak posh, posh like you. I want to speak like in street."

6 An expert on language How closely do you think the activities you use in the classroom resemble those of learners who learn a language ‘naturally’ by being immersed in situations in which they need to use the language (Lewis, 2005: 7).

7 Authenticity (relative at best!) An authentic text is a stretch of real language, produced by a real speaker or writer for a real audience and designed to convey a real message of some sort (Morrow, 1977: 13). Authentic texts... are those which are designed for native speakers: they are real texts designed not for language students (Harmer, 1983: 146). A rule of thumb for authentic... is any material which has not been specifically produced for the purposes of language teaching (Nunan, 1989: 54).

8 Four types of authenticity Authenticity of the text; Authenticity of the learners’ interpretations; Authenticity of the tasks; Authenticity of the social situation used in the classroom (Breen, 1985: 61). What’s missing?

9 Authenticity of the language Where we see local variation in accent, dialect, mannerisms, tone, pace, paralinguistic cues, etc.

10 Authentic language - a working definition - Authentic language is unedited, as people use it spontaneously in their `real lives’, in situations where they are not monitoring their language and are not thinking about how other people might be judging their language use (adapted from Schiffman).Schiffman

11 Authenticity (EFL) Authenticity is typically a concern in EFL contexts where authentic language is sometimes regarded as any spoken or written document produced in the country of the target language.

12 Authenticity (ESOL) Authenticity in ESOL is not given as much concern as it is in EFL more broadly. This is a mistake. Adult ESOL in England and Wales is subject to adherence to the Adult ESOL Core Curriculum (AECC).Adult ESOL Core Curriculum The hegemony of AECC English, to the exclusion of regional differences, often produces ‘purified’ English in textbook language materials and multimedia products.

13 Connected texts “If we try to make our texts embody certain grammatical categories, the texts cease to be natural: they become either trivial, tedious and long-winded, or else they become more or less monstrosities,” (Sweet, 1899: 192). The Practical Study of Language

14 Most widely used ESOL resource In the Skills for Life language packs we find some of the most contrived, mechanistic, simplified, standardised ‘examples’ of the English language. language packs

15 Dave’s ESL cafe (web-based)

16 Tribal (ctad.co.uk) “Realistic video scenarios, in authentic settings, reflect the language of everyday life in the UK.” Their words not mine!

17 Asylum applications

18 UK Distribution of Asylum Seekers (1)

19 UK Distribution of Asylum Seekers (2)

20 Anyone here from Leodis? Yorkshire accent and dialect NDBg

21 Authenticity - a working definition Authentic language is unedited, as people use it spontaneously in their `real lives’, in situations where they are not monitoring their language and are not thinking about how other people might be judging their language use (adapted from Schiffman).Schiffman

22 - meeting local language needs - linguistic analysis “linguistic ‘undercover’ work is especially useful and suitable to those foreign language students who are learning to function in a target culture, not just acquire a target language,” (Norton, 2008: 2).

23 1 voice recorder Equipment needed

24 1 telephone pick-up coil (99p - £15.00) Equipment needed

25 1 wife

26 - meeting local language needs - linguistic undercover work (with analysis) Simone: What time are you off? 2 2. Note the use of ‘off’ instead of the standard ‘going’. Carol: As soon as they 3 get dressed and ‘they’ meaning her children. Can the learners identify this from the context? Simone: Because we’re on about 4 going to the chippie 5 for some dinner. 4. ‘we’re on about’ meaning ‘we’ve been talking about ‘ (perhaps with her children or her friends). 5. ‘chippie’ meaning the fish & chip shop. Carol:Alright, yes. that Sounds like fun! 6 Yes. Erm, well they’re 7 just getting dressed now. I’m just gonna get my clothes on ‘sounds like’; ‘like’ functioning here as an indicative or prophetic adverb. 7. ‘they’re’ meaning her children. 8. ‘gonna get my clothes on’ meaning ‘going to get dressed’; presumably, this is an early morning call and the family are still in their pyjamas. Can the learners identify this from the context?

27 Simplification or Easification (Bhatia, 1983) Nearly all ESOL language learning materials in the UK are manufactured and simplified to make them accessible … BUT “... to hold back potentially confusing language points both to a distortion of the teacher role and to a denial of the tight relationship between language taught in class and language knowledge required for daily life,” (Simpson, 2009: 3).

28 Easification Techniques add white space or use a larger piece of paper add a gloss in the margins number the lines separate the paragraphs add sub-headings highlight words, sentences, paragraphs add visuals use colours to aid memory change the font size, enlarge the text, etc. add comments or questions add somebody else's text to it translate difficult words provide pronunciation of unfamiliar words using the IPA

29 Design principle 1 - interactivity The loop is complete from the teacher’s perspective, but not complete from the students perspective. The same interaction from the student perspective. The loop is not complete.

30 Design principle 1 - interactivity Interactivity is a message loop Multimedia allows for a reduction in time lag in response to learner input “Interactivity in instruction must occur from the student’s point of view” (Yacci, 2000, emphasis added).

31 Design principle 2 - repetition Cognitive learning theory assumes ‘working memory … is able to deal with information for no more than a few seconds with almost all information lost after about 20 seconds unless it is refreshed by rehearsal,’ (van Merriënboer, 2005: 148). Language acquisition typically requires much repetition and long periods of time. A web- based platform allows for this 24/7.

32 In conclusion authenticating tutor; authenticating designer We should be looking for ‘the authenticating teacher’ not ‘the authentic text’ (Shomoossi & Ketabi, 2007: 154). Introducing easification techniques might enable tutors to introduce more diverse (non- standard) English(es) applicable to local contexts. Where does this leave the materials developer; the design professionals?

33 References Bhatia, V.K. (1983) Simplification v. easification - the case of legal texts. Applied Linguistics 4, 1: [9.2] Breen, M. P. (1985). Authenticity in the language classroom. Applied Linguistics 6, Candlin, C. (1993). Problematising authenticity: whose texts for whom? Paper presented at the TESOL Convention, Atlanta. Carter, R. (2004) Language and Creativity: The Art of Common Talk. England: Routledge. Department for Education and Skills. (2001) Adult ESOL Core Curriculum. London: Basic Skills Agency/DfES. Available online at Ellis, R. (1993). Interpretation-based grammar teaching. System 21, Harmer, J. (1991). The practice of English language teaching: new edition. London: Longman. Hughes, G. S. (1981). A handbook of classroom English. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Hymes, D. H. (1971). On communicative competence. In J. Pride and J. Holmes (Eds.), Sociolinguistics. Penguin, Kramsch, C. (1993). Context and culture in language teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Lewis, M. (1997) Implementing the Lexical Approach. England: Language Teaching Publications. Littlewood, W. T. (1981). Communicative language teaching: an introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Littlewood, W. T. ( 1992). Teaching oral communication: a methodological framework. Oxford: Blackwell. Morrow, K. (1977). Authentic Texts in ESP. In S. Holden (Ed.), English for specific purposes. London: Modern English Publications. Nunan, D. (1989). Designing tasks for the communicative classroom. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Norton, S. (2008) Discourse analysis as an approach to intercultural competence in the advanced EFL classroom. Pawley, A. and Syder, F.H. (1983) 'Two puzzles for linguistic theory: Native like selection and native like fluency.' In Richards, J. and Schmidt, R. (eds.) Language and Communication. London: Longman. Rivers, W. M. & Temperley, M. S. (1978). A practical guide to the teaching of English as a second language. New York: Oxford University Press. Shomoossi & Ketabi (2007) A Critical Look at the Concept of Authenticity, Simpson, J. (2009) In press. 'A critical stance in language education: a reply to Alan Waters'. Applied Linguistics 30/3 (autumn 2009). Stevenson, D. K. (1985). Authenticity, validity, and a tea party. Language Testing 2, Swan, M. (1985a). A critical look at the communicative approach. Part 1. English Language Teaching Journal 39, Swan, M. (1985b). A critical look at the communicative approach. Part 2. English Language Teaching Journal 39, Sweet, H. (1899) The Practical Study of Language Taylor, D. van Merriënboer, J.G. & Sweller, J. (2005) ‘Cognitive Load Theory and Complex Learning: Recent Developments and Future Directions,’ Educational Psychology Review, Vol. 17, No. 2, June Widdowson, H. G. (1972). The teaching of English as communication. English Language Teaching. 27, Widdowson, H. G. (1979). Explorations in applied linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Widdowson, H. G. (1990). Aspects of language teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Wilkins, D. A. (1976). Notional syllabuses. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [-11-] Yacci, M (2000) Interactivity Demystified: A structural definition for Distance Education and Intelligent computer-based instruction Educational Technology July- August, pp5-16


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