Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching, 2011, vol. 1, no. 2

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    Notes on Contributors
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011-04)
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    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011-04) Pawlak, Mirosław
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    Anxiety over EFL speaking and writing: A view from language classrooms
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Gkonou, Christina
    The assumption that foreign language learners experience a high level of anxiety mainly when faced with speaking activities implies that research should focus on those learners prone to anxiety over that skill. Despite not being widely investigated, foreign language writing anxiety also seems to be a concern for a large number of students. Drawing on questionnaire findings, the study reported in this article examined the nature of, and the connection between the English language classroom speaking and writing anxiety of 128 Greek EFL learners in private language school settings. Speaking anxiety was operationalised by Horwitz, Horwitz, and Cope's (1986) Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale, and writng anxiety was measured by Gungle and Taylor's (1989) ESL version of the Daly and Miller's 1975) Writing Apprehension Test. Interconstruct and intraconstruct associations between the two instruments were examined through principal components analysis with varimax rotation and correlations check. A significant and high correlation was found between classroom anxiety and speaking anxiety, thus indicating that the English language classroom context is a source of speaking anxiety. Writing anxiety was found to load primarily on items relating to attitudes towards writing in English followed by self-derogation for the process and fear of negative evaluation by the teachers and/or by fellow students. On the basis of the findings, suggestions are made concerning the reassessment of the influence that writing anxiety exerts on classroom performance and the adoption of teaching techniques that promote topic-centred process writing.
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    Foreign language anxiety and self-perceived English pronunciation competence
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Szyszka, Magdalena
    In foreign language learning a negative correlation has been reported between language anxiety and both oral performance (Liu, 2006; Stephenson Wilson, 2006; Woodrow 2006) and self-perceived levels of speaking ability (Kitano, 2001; MacIntyre, Noels, & Clement, 1997; Piechurska-Kuciel, 2008). However, little is known about the relationship between language anxiety and the way students perceive their own competence regarding one of the integral components of oral performance – pronunciation. The present study is an attempt to investigate the link between foreign language anxiety and the self-perceived levels of pronunciation of 48 teacher training college students, who study English as a foreign language. A negative correlation, r = -.54 (p < .05), was found between the level of their language anxiety and self-perceived English pronunciation competence, indicating that more apprehensive teacher trainees perceived their pronunciation as poor, whereas those with lower levels of anxiety declared higher pronunciation competence. Moreover, statistically significant negative correlations were noted between the levels of anxiety and self-perceived competences of several suprasegmental aspects of pronunciation, such as word pronunciation, stress, weak forms, rhythm, linking, and assimilation. The teacher trainees who rated their competence of these suprasegmentals more highly experienced lower levels of foreign language anxiety. The perception of segmentals, however, appeared to be unconnected with the participants’ anxiety.
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    Using tracking software for writing instruction
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Yagi, Sane M.; Al-Salman, Saleh
    is what is often evaluated in the context of language teaching, the process of giving thought to linguistic form is fascinating. For almost forty years, language teachers have found it more effective to help learners in the writing process than in the written product; it is there that they could find sources of writing problems. Despite all controversy evoked by post-process approaches with respect to process writing, information technology has lately offered tools that can shed new light on how writing takes place. Software that can record keyboard, mouse, and screen activities is capable of unraveling mysteries of the writing process. Technology has given teachers and learners the option of examining the writing process as it unfolds, enabling them to diagnose strategy as well as wording problems, thus empowering teachers to guide learners individually in how to think about each of their trouble spots in the context of a specific product of writing. With these advances in information technology, metacognitive awareness and strategy training begin to acquire new dimensions of meaning. Technology lays open aspects of the writing process, offering unprecedented insight into creative text production as well. This paper attempts to explain how tracking software can influence writing instruction. It briefly examines the process and post-process approaches to assess their viability, explains the concept of tracking software, proposes methodology needed for the adoption of this technology, and then discusses the pedagogical implications of these issues.
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    Native-speaker and English as a lingua franca pronunciation norms: English majors’ views
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Wach, Aleksandra
    Within the communicative approach to English as a foreign language (EFL)teaching, the aims of instruction are primarily to enable learners to communicate; hence, functional and communicative intelligibility has become the goal of pronunciation training. On the other hand, contemporary approaches to EFL teaching leave sufficient room for accommodating the individual learner and contextual factors which largely influence the choice of the target pronunciation models. Moreover, in a globalized world, where English has become a contemporary lingua franca for intercultural communication, the pronunciation norms of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF) appear to meet the needs and expectations of learners of English in international settings, coexisting with or replacing nativespeaker pronunciation models as the target of instruction. The ELF approach and the Lingua Franca Core elaborated by Jenkins (2000, 2002) have aroused controversy among both researchers and EFL teachers. The paper presents the findings of a questionnaire study involving 234 Polish students, English majors, which aimed to determine their preferences and opinions concerning nativespeaker and ELF norms as pronunciation instruction targets. The findings revealed a strong preference for native-like pronunciation models in the subjects’ own language development and a less strong preference for such models in pronunciation teaching at all levels of proficiency. Moreover, the results pointed to the significant role played by the intensity of pronunciation training and the level of awareness of native-speaker pronunciation models in shaping the subjects’ attitudes toward native-like and ELF pronunciation norms.
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    Acculturation strategy and language experience in expert ESL speakers: An exploratory study
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Waniek-Klimczak, Ewa
    Acculturation and language proficiency have been found to be inter-related both from the perspective of second language acquisition (Schumann, 1978, 1986) and socio-psychological adaptation in cross-cultural contacts (Ward, Bochner, & Furnham, 2001). However, the predictions as to the effect of a particular strategy on success differ, with assimilation believed to create most favourable conditions for SLA and integration for general well-being. The present study explores acculturation patterns in three expert users of English as a second language, recent Polish immigrants to the UK, in relation to their language experience. The qualitative data were collected with the use of a questionnaire and analysed with respect to language experience and socioaffective factors. The analysis aimed at better understanding of the relationship between language learning in a formal context and language use in a natural setting on the one hand and the relationship between language expertise and acculturation strategy choice on the other. The results show that in spite of individual differences, expert language users tend to adopt an assimilation rather than integration acculturation strategy. This may suggest that attitudes are related to expertise in English as a second language in a more conservative way than advocated by cross-cultural approaches.
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    Cognate facilitation effects in trilingual word recognition
    (Zakład Filologii Angielskiej: Wydział Pedagogiczno-Artystyczny Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Kaliszu, 2011) Szubko-Sitarek, Weronika
    Research on bilingual word recognition suggests that lexical access is nonselective with respect to language, i.e., that word representations of both languages become active during recognition. One piece of evidence supporting nonselective access is that bilinguals recognize cognates (words that are identical or similar in form and meaning in two or more languages) faster than noncognates. In fact, any difference between how cognates and ‘monolingual’ words are processed by multilinguals would indicate that the other, currently irrelevant language must have played a role as well, at least as long as the two groups of words are comparable with respect to all dimensions other than language membership. The aim of the present paper is to report on two visual perceptual experiments conducted within the lexical decision task paradigm whose aim was to test the assumptions concerning the special position of cognates (the cognate facilitation effect, cf. Dijkstra, 2005) within a trilingual mind and to answer the question whether trilinguals rely upon their second language lexical knowledge when recognizing L3 words. The results of the experiments attest to simultaneous activation and parallel processing as well as interaction among all the three languages. At the same time, they point to the fact that cross-linguistic lexical access and the source and strength of transfer may be constrained by variables such task demands.
Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Biblioteka Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego