L2 Language Learning

Topics: Language acquisition, Linguistics, Second language acquisition Pages: 6 (1725 words) Published: December 24, 2013
Similar to other professions, teaching requires a plan of up-coming instructions. Improvising, although helpful as a style while teaching, is not thought to be enough for successful learning. Thus, a teacher needs to know some teaching techniques which are proven to be successful according to learners’ positive reactions. There have been many studies about second language teaching. Effectiveness, facility, and clarity of the results generally determine the validity of the research. There has been prolonging arguments about what the most effective method for teaching a second language is. Second Language Acquisition (SLA) is already a part of the world of academicians and scientists. Many methods of teaching to improve SLA have been introduced to the world of education. This review will basically cover three methods of instructions which play a great role in the debate. Form-based instruction, meaning-based instruction; and the combination of both, integrative language teaching. Traditional form-based instruction (Spada & Lightbown, 1993) focuses on the linguistic and grammatical structure which makes the speech grammatically accurate. In this method, linguistic and syntactic features of the target language are introduced to the learners. However, the accuracy does not come along with the competence in the language because the students instructed with the form-based approach lack the ability to produce spontaneous speeches (Sysoyev, 1999). Unlike form-based instruction, meaning-based (Spada & Lightbown, 1993) instructional approach focuses on performance of the learners’ spontaneous response in communicative speeches (Sysoyev, 1999). Linguistic accuracy is not guaranteed in this type of approach. To sum up, form-based instruction draws students’ attention to the structure of the language itself: grammar, pronunciation, pragmatics, and vocabulary. On the other hand, meaning-based instruction leaves the grammar and aims at the meaning only, which is thought to be more important in communication: conversations, authentic tasks, everyday situations. These shortcomings of methods, which are introduced above, created a pursuit for a method that seeks linguistic accuracy as well as communicative competence. Spada and Lightbown (1993) have argued "that form focused instruction and corrective feedback provided within the context of communicative interaction can contribute positively to second language development in both the short and long term" (p. 205). The integration of both form-focused and meaning-focused instructions is called Integrative Language Teaching. The general responses gathered from L2 learners, who are imposed to integrative method, have shown a positive result thus proved the effectiveness of Integrative Language Teaching method (Sysoyev, 1999). FORM-BASED INSTRUCTION IN L2 TEACHING

The efficiency of the form-based instruction is indisputable according to Spada and Lightbown(1993). Many researchers in the 1970’s tried to prove that meaning-based instruction through classroom activities, which will later provide the learners the ability to exchange and seek information, gives opportunities to use language (Brumfit, 1984; Howatt, 1984). However, some researchers have observed that good content teaching may not always be good language teaching (Swain, 1988). Spada and Lightbown(2006) clarified this need for form-focused instruction by hyphotesizing that only those who begin learning L2 as young children can acquire or by Spada’s term develop the target language through meaning-based instruction. This outcome supports the idea that form-focused instruction (FFI) is not necessary for SLA. However, the physiological changes that occur with age reduces the effectiveness of meaning-based instruction (Lightbown & Spada, 1993). This being the case, a small departure from meaning-based instruction is inevitable. Learners who begin learning when they are beyond...

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