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Topic Two. Strategy training and L2 learning. Encouraging Note. “English course guidelines for primary and secondary school students”(2001) English Course Requirements for Non-English Majors (2004) “ English teaching syllabus for English majors” (2000). The language curriculum.

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topic two
Topic Two
  • Strategy training and L2 learning
encouraging note
Encouraging Note
  • “English course guidelines for primary and secondary school students”(2001)
  • English Course Requirements for Non-English Majors (2004)
  • “English teaching syllabus for English majors” (2000)
the language curriculum
The language curriculum
  • Syllabus design: What?
  • Methodology: How?
  • Evaluation: How well?
    • (Nunan, 2004)
difficulties in implementing the new curriculum
Difficulties in implementing the new curriculum
  • No specifications in the curriculum
    • How to incorporate the strategy component into a daily lesson?
    • How to incorporate it into a web-based course?
The question that arises in this context
    • How to integrate strategy training with university-level foreign language programs?
what am i going to talk about
What am I going to talk about?
  • Reviewing the progress in strategy training in mainland China
  • Critically examining common assumptions underlying strategy training programs and research on strategies
  • Strategy training principles and their justifications
topic one
Topic One

Reviewing progress in language strategy training in China

pioneering efforts in mainland china
Pioneering efforts in Mainland China
  • For students
    • General training
    • Specific training
  • For teachers
    • The summer institute
examples for general training
Examples For general training
  • Zhu Weifang & Cao Wen (1999)
  • Ma Xiaomei & Gao Yanjie et al. (2003)
examples for specific training
Examples for specific training
  • Lü Changhong, (2001): Listening
  • Wang Lifei (2002): Speaking
  • Fan Lin & Wang Qinghua(2002): Vocabulary learning
general training 1
General training(1)
  • Zhu Weifang & Cao Wen (1999)
    • Beijing University of Foreign Studies
    • 57 first-year students enrolled in 1997
    • The English Orientation Camp
      • three weeks
      • help freshmen adjust themselves to university life and study
l2 learning strategy training
L2 learning strategy training
  • Textbook “Learning matters” by David Nunan
  • 15 strategies were introduced to the students
  • Each cycle consists of three activities
l2 learning strategy training1
L2 learning strategy training
  • Reflecting on and sharing the learning strategies used before
  • Discussing 15 introduced strategies in relation to different teaching situations
  • Accomplishing different tasks by a variety of strategies
  • 31% students: benefit from strategy training
  • 12% students: too abstract and not useful
  • Conclusion: strategies teachable and somewhat effective, but not as effective as was expected
general training 2
General training (2)
  • Ma Xiaomei & Gao Yanjie et al. (2003) Xi’an Jiaotong University
    • 260 students enrolled in 2001
    • One year (Sept., 2001- July, 2002)
    • Phase One: awareness raising
      • Students’ contracts
      • Lectures
    • Phase Two: strategy-based instruction
      • Pre-, during and post-activities
  • The three experimental classes all outperformed the three control classes in the post-test. (Questionable)
  • The frequency of the use of strategies decreased in both experimental and control classes.
topic two1
Topic Two
  • Critically examining common assumptions underlying the previous strategy training and research on strategies
common assumptions
Common Assumptions
  • Students do not know what are good strategies.
  • Some strategies are good while others are bad.
  • The belief “The more, the better”
assumption one lack of strategies
Assumption One: lack of strategies
  • 6 years of learning English
  • 12 years of learning Chinese
  • Experience in learning physics, mathematics, chemistry, history, geography
  • Experience in learning every day living skills
Have abundant resources for learning strategies
  • Need to learn how to activate and implement the strategies they have already had before
  • Abandon the informing-practice pattern
assumption two good or bad
Assumption Two: Good or bad
  • Some strategies are good while others bad. Poorer learners do not learn a foreign language successfully because they use bad strategies while good learners use good strategies.
  • Huang (1987)
  • Vann & Abraham (1990)
assumption two good or bad1
Assumption Two: Good or bad
  • Ellis (1994), Cohen (1998),
  • Strategies are not inherently good or bad. There are no good or bad strategies but there is only good or bad use of strategies.
  • Who, When, How
assumption three the belief the more the better
Assumption Three: the belief “the more the better”
  • Underlying quite a number of studies
    • Nunan suggests: encourage poorer learners to use a greater range of strategies
Strategies are problem-oriented.
  • Some strategies are double edged.
  • Strategies do not function well individually.
topic three
Topic Three
  • Strategy training principles and their justifications
theoretical justification
Theoretical justification
  • The cognitive perspective
    • Skill development
  • The educational perspective
    • the whole person development
  • The social constructivist perspective
    • Knowledge accumulation
principle one
Principle One
  • Learn strategies as developing skills
the cognitive perspective
The cognitive perspective
  • Anderson (1993, 1995)
    • A three-stage model of the skill-learning process
    • Declarative stage, procedural stage, automatized stage
  • The nature of strategy: problem-oriented, intentional
  • Strategies are learners’ deliberate actions to make learning easier, faster, more enjoyable, more self-directed, more effective, and more transferable to new situations” (Oxford, 1990: 8)
  • Ellis, (1994); Cohen (1998)
learning strategies as skills
Learning strategies as skills
  • Two stages
    • Declarative stage
    • Procedural stage
principle two
Principle Two
  • Instruction unit
    • MCA as a cluster
mca as a cluster
MCA as a cluster



(Meta-cognitive/ Meta-affective)

Cognitive strategies

Affective strategies



Strategy= belief+action

oxford s classification 1990
Oxford’s classification (1990)

Memory (Direct)









Meta-cognitive (indirect)

o malley chamot 1990
O’Malley & Chamot (1990)




principle two1
Principle Two
  • Strategies training is a kind of skill learning.
the educational perspective
The educational perspective
  • Intellectual, affective and social competence
  • Proficient L2 learners and contributing members of a community
  • The structure of language strategies
principle three
Principle Three
  • The procedure of strategy training is trying-sharing- performing-monitoring instead of informing-practice
the role of the teacher 1
The role of the teacher(1)
  • Find out students’ strategies used before and the strategies proved to be successful or less successful
the role of the teacher 2
The role of the teacher (2)
  • Help expand the students’ repertoire of strategies
the role of the teacher 3
The role of the teacher (3)
  • Provide the students with opportunities to practice
the role of the teacher 4
The role of the teacher (4)
  • Encourage the students to monitor and evaluate their strategy use
the constructivist perspective
The constructivist perspective
  • Knowledge is constructed by an individual through interaction with his environment.
    • The learner: a contributor as well as a constructor
    • The learner’s own initiative
    • The procedures: trying, discussing, performing and evaluating instead of informing and practicing
  • Strategy training: a means but not an end
  • Immediate goal
    • Facilitate L2 learning
  • Ultimate goal
    • Produce autonomous learners
  • Part of quality education
  • Multiple functions