Final Immersion Team Paper

Topics: Language immersion, Linguistics, Second language Pages: 9 (1789 words) Published: January 10, 2015

LTA: The Benefits of Linguistic Immersion
Instructor Nazarian
November 24, 2014
University of Phoenix

LTA: The Benefits of Linguistic Immersion
Immersion is an extremely beneficial technique in order to encourage the understanding of multiple languages. While Immersion is important in the acquisition of a foreign language, the linguistic study of Immersion can hold challenges such as: “Pressing challenges include staffing, curriculum development and program articulation,” (W. Fortune, 2014). However, the study and implementation of Immersion is valuable. Immersion into another culture and its language allows an individual to completely engulf their self in another culture, gaining new linguistic insight and knowledge; studies support cultural growth through immersion, the benefits are able to be seen in certain areas of life: education, work, family, and personal development. Having linguistic knowledge is important in one’s personal development, family life, education, and work place. To have this knowledge would provide people an understanding that human language, whether it is sign language or Spanish, is complex. In school, or in the educational field, it is essential for children to learn another language. It is now required for students to take at least one foreign language class in public high schools. Having linguistic knowledge in the educational setting is good because it means that students are given the opportunity to see how language works and why it is important. Students are able to see how the structure of languages is made, how it is acquired, and so on. This helps students better communicate with others who may have been having a hard time understanding new languages. Studies have been done throughout the years using Spanish speaking children and placing them in English speaking classrooms. Most of the instruction that these Spanish speaking children are given throughout the day is in English. The English speaking children lead by example with the Spanish speaking children mimicking the actions of their English speaking peers. The use of immersion in a classroom setting is a proven method of teaching, not only the English language, but the culture and expectations of the American classroom. Linguistic Immersion studies have revealed the developmental advantages of learning a second language. Learning the advantages of immersion in education and using it helps to advance the education process. Research on language immersion education has produced benefits such as academic achievement, language and literacy development in two or more languages, and cognitive skills. The immersion approach first gained traction in North America because educators believed in its potential to move students further towards bilingualism and literacy. "These early immersion programs started by committing half or more of the school day for teachers and students to work only in the second," (Baker, 1993)Learning a foreign language has its assets, and studies suggest that immersion is an effective way to learn foreign languages. Many immersion programs start in the elementary schools, with classroom time being dedicated to the foreign language anywhere between 50% and 90% of the day. Learning a second or third language not only helps an individual's personal mental skills but also aids their future job skills. Because of linguistics who study immersion and its impact on education it can be used form an early age to help improve linguistic and meta linguistic abilities. “Immersion can be referred to as ‘the catalyst’ for improved thinking.” (Baker, 1993) Some linguistics and researchers go as far as to determine the spectrum in which immersion improves learning a second language abroad. Studying immersion aboard relates the ways students create opportunities to interact with members of the host community, highlighting cultural clash, miscommunication, and the intersection of two cultures. Not...
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