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Explaining Second Language Learning I. by Lisa Kaci, Josephin Oberhokamp, Hendrik Fitzner & Camilla Honerlage. Table of content. Questions Behaviourism Mimicry and memorization The innatist perspective Universal Grammar “Monitor Model” Psychological theories

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explaining second language learning i

Explaining Second Language Learning I

by Lisa Kaci, Josephin Oberhokamp, Hendrik Fitzner & Camilla Honerlage

table of content
Table of content
  • Questions
  • Behaviourism
    • Mimicry and memorization
  • The innatist perspective
    • Universal Grammar
    • “Monitor Model”
  • Psychological theories
    • Cognitivist/developmental perspective
    • Information processing
    • Connectionism
    • The competition model
  • Discussion
questions
Questions
  • What are the steps with which Behaviorism explains language? Name them and give an example.
  • What are the two different theories about the nature of Universal Grammar?
  • What are the 5 hypotheses of Krashen’s “Monitor Model? Explain two of them briefly.
  • To what refer “declarative knowledge” and “procedural knowledge”?
  • What does the Competition Model explain?
behaviourism
Behaviourism
  • Theory of learning
  • Very influential between the 1940s and 1970s
  • Nurture  Environment has great importance
behaviourism5
Behaviourism
  • Explains learning in terms of:
    • Imitation
    • Practice (mimicry)
    • Reinforcement

 Formation of habit = language development

behaviourism6
Behaviourism
  • Video: Learning English, Spanglish
  • Video: Some funny guy learning English
behaviourism7
Behaviourism
  • Influence on development of audiolingual teaching and material

 great emphasis on mimicry and memorization

behaviourism8
Behaviourism
  • Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis assumes:
behaviourism9
Behaviourism
  • But: learners did not do the predicted errors

All learners made nearly the same errors

  • Influence of first language is the process of finding similarities
criticism on behaviourism and cah
Criticism on Behaviourism and CAH
  • Behaviourism + Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis are inadequate explanations for second language acquisition
universal grammar
Universal Grammar
  • Noam Chomsky
  • Innate linguistic knowledge which consists of a set of principles common to all languages
  • Explanation for second language acquisition?
universal grammar12
Universal Grammar
  • Lydia White:
    • best perspective for second language acquisition; but nature of Universal Grammar is altered
  • Robert Bley-Vroman/Jacquelyn Schachter:
    • Not a good explanation for second language acquisition: critical period is passed
  • Vivian Cook
    • Learners have more knowledge than input could give them
universal grammar13
Universal Grammar
  • Different theories about its nature
  • Nature and availability of Universal Grammar are the same in first language acquisition and second language acquisition
  • Universal Grammar that is present to second language learners has been altered in its nature by acquisition of other languages
monitor model
Monitor Model
  • Stephen Krashen
  • Model of second language acquisition
  • Influenced by Chomsky‘s theory of first language acquisition
monitor model15
Monitor Model

Based on 5 hypotheses:

  • Acquisition-Learning Hypothesis
  • Monitor Hypothesis
  • Natural Order Hypothesis
  • Input Hypothesis
  • Affective Filter Hypothesis
psychological theories cognitivist developmental perspective
Psychological theories: cognitivist/developmental perspective
  • Since 1990 central role in second language acquisition
  • Computer as metaphor for mind
    • Capacities for storage, integration and retrieval
  • No specific module in brain for acquisition/learning
  • UG as explanation for first language acquisition

 Less successful for second language acquisition

psychological theories cognitivist developmental perspective18
Psychological theories: cognitivist/developmental perspective
  • Theories:
    • Information processing
    • Connectionism
    • The competition model
information processing
Information processing
  • Norman Segalowitz:
    • Second language acquisition as the building up of knowledge for automatic use of speaking and understanding
    • Learner first pays attention to any aspect of language for understanding/production

 controlled processing

    • Experience/practice  easier process of information

 quicker automatic access

information processing20
Information processing

Controlled processing

Automatic processing

  • Slow access
  • Under control of attention
  • Limited in capacity
  • Quick access
  • Requires little attention
  • Needs little capacity to perform
information processing21
Information processing
  • Robert DeKeyser:
    • Second language acquisition as “skill learning”
    • Learning starts with declarative knowledge
    • Becomes procedural knowledge through practice
    • Processes become proceduralized/automized like other skills
    • Parallel to development from controlled to automatic processing
information processing22
Information processing

Declarative knowledge

Procedural knowledge

  • Involves acquisition of isolated facts and rules

 knowing that

  • e.g. knowing that a car can be driven
  • Requires practice
  • Involves processing of longer units and increasing automization

knowing how

  • e.g. knowing how to drive a car
information processing23
Information processing
  • Example: car driving
    • Begin learning to drive a car
      • Close attention to every action/decision
      • Aware that performances can easily be disturbed (e.g. talking)
    • Practice  skill improves
      • Automization
    • Experienced driver
      • Able to pay attention to previously disturbing events
information processing24
Information processing
  • Restructuring
    • Changes in language behavior
    • Quality changes in learner‘s knowledge
      • New forms are not just added to old
      • Regular systematic reorganization and reformulation
    • Sudden burst of knowledge or backsliding
      • Systematic aspect of learner‘s language incorporates too much or wrong things

 saw + ed

connectionism
Connectionism
  • Innate: only the simple ability to learn
  • Very important: the role of the environment
connectionism26
Connectionism
  • Emphasis is on the frequency
    • Encountering of specific linguistic features in the input
    • How often features occur together
connectionism27
Connectionism
  • Knowledge of language built up through exposure
  • “connections” build up
  • Stronger connections the more often something is heard

 chunks

the competition model
The competition model
  • Explains first language and second language acquisition
  • Hypothesis:

“language acquisition occurs without the necessity of a learner‘s focused attention or the need for any innate brain module that is specifically for language“

the competition model29
The competition model
  • Language use and language meaning important
  • Learners understand how to use “cues”

 word order, grammatical markers and animacy of nouns

the competition model30
The competition model
  • Example: „Box push boy“
  • Depends on the mother tongue, how second languages are learned
    • Example: “Il giocattologuardailil bambino”
questions31
Questions
  • What are the steps with which Behaviorism explains language? Name them and give an example.
  • What are the two different theories about the nature of Universal Grammar?
  • What are the 5 hypotheses of Krashen’s “Monitor Model? Explain two of them briefly.
  • To what refer “declarative knowledge” and “procedural knowledge”?
  • What does the Competition Model explain?
bibliography
Bibliography

Doughty, C. J. & Long, M.H. (eds.) (2003). The Handbook of Second Language Acquisition. Malden, MA: Blackwell.

Gramley, S. & Gramley, V. (eds.) (2008). Bielefeld Introduction to Applied Linguistics. Bielefeld: Aithesis.

Lightbown, P. M. & Spada, N. (2006). How Languages are Learned. 3rd Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Mitchell, R. & Myles, F. (1998). Second Language Learning Theories. London: Arnold.

Richards, J.C. & Rodgers, T. S. (2001). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching. 2nd edition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Saville-Troike, M. (2006). Introducing Second Language Acquisition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.