TESOL Quarterly

Published by TESOL
Online ISSN: 1545-7249
Publications
Article
Anna Mauranen is professor of English philology at the University of Tampere. Her main research is in corpus linguistics, text, and discourse analysis. She has compiled a corpus of translated Finnish and been involved in a contrastive Finnish-English corpus and the Michigan Corpus of Academic Spoken English. Her publications include corpus linguistics and text linguistic work (e.g., Cultural Differences in Academic Rhetoric, Peter Lang, 1993).
 
Descriptive Data for Target Item Gain Scores by Uptake Type Across All Four Posttests
Article
The present study builds on recent uptake research (Ellis, Basturkmen, & Loewen, 2001a, 2001b; Lyster & Ranta, 1997) by exploring the relationship between negotiated interaction, a type of focus on form episode, and learner uptake. The study explores whether a negotiation routine's complexity affects learner uptake and if this uptake affects lexical acquisition in a synchronous computer-mediated environment. The data are chatscripts of task-based computer-mediated communication (CMC) interaction among intermediate-level learners of English (n = 24). Results suggest that the complexity of negotiation routines does not influence learner uptake. Findings also suggest that there is no relationship between degree of uptake (none, unsuccessful, and successful) and the acquisition of target lexical items. These results suggest a possible diminished role for uptake in SLA in a CMC environment. The pedagogical application of these findings includes a word of caution to classroom teachers to adjust their expectations about the relationship between learner uptake and acquisition. In attempting to explain the acquisition of target vocabulary items during task-based CMC interaction, teachers should focus on the nuances of negotiated interaction as well as more subtle indications of acquisition rather than learner uptake per se.
 
Pretest, Posttest, and Delayed Test Results
Article
File and Adams (2010) conclude that their data confirms the superiority of form-focused vocabulary instruction over incidental acquisition. In our view, their data actually confirms the reality, robustness, and possible superiority of incidental acquisition.
 
Article
The TESOL Quarterly welcomes evaluative reviews of publications relevant to TESOL professionals. In addition to textbooks and reference materials, these include computer and video software, testing instruments, and other forms of nonprint materials.
 
Article
Salah Troudi teaches applied linguistics and language education at the School of Education and Lifelong Learning at the University of Exeter, England. His research interests include teacher education, critical applied linguistics, and language policies. He coordinates the doctor of education in TESOL program in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
 
Article
Two successful non-English-major EFL learners at Beijing Normal University took part in a think-aloud and an interview session, respectively, on how they handled vocabulary learning during and after reading. Results show that, like successful learners everywhere, these learners (a) saw vocabulary as but one aspect of language learning that needs to be integrated with language use, (b) demonstrated high levels of self-initiation and selective attention, and (c) employed a wide range of vocabulary-learning strategies. The two learners also displayed revealing differences in learning style. Their highly flexible, skilful integration and execution of strategies may be due to a combination of Chinese conceptions of learning, traditional schooling, and literacy practice, the prevailing methods for teaching and learning English in China, the demands of the vocabulary-learning task, and individual learning style.
 
Chapter
This paper explores in a speculative fashion the process and characteristics of becoming bicultural. The basic argument is that becoming bicultural is an eclectic process which results in an idiosyncratic mixture of the two ( C1 and C2) cultures with one basic "cultural competence" but with two sets of "socio-cultural performance" (in Keesing's 1974 terms).
 
Article
This article reports on the results of a research study which investigated the perception of English speech sounds by Hong Kong Cantonese English as a second language speakers. A total of 40 university English majors participated in one categorial discrimination task and two second language (L2) minimal pair identification tasks, which aimed at discerning the participants' perception of different English speech sounds. The results show that certain English speech sounds trigger more perception problems than others, but perception problems do not necessarily correspond to documented production difficulties. It is argued that learners' preconception of word pronunciations may be a contributing factor for their perception problems. The position of a sonorant consonant may also play a role in perception, but positional effects do not seem to be as significant in the perception of obstruents as in that of sonorant consonants. It is suggested that remedial teaching on both perception and production should go hand in hand to enhance learners' L2 phonology acquisition.
 
Article
Cognitive Linguistics (CL) makes the functional assumption that form is motivated by meaning. CL also analyses form-meaning pairings as products of how cognition structures perception. CL thus helps teachers to fit language to the nature of the cognition that learns whilst devising modes of instruction that are better attuned to the nature of the language that has to be learnt. This paper argues that facets of a new approach are starting to emerge and that these can be broadly isolated according to four principles that comprise: embodied learning, conceptualization, the lexico-grammatical continuum, and usage. The principles interact one with another to consolidate the use of some older classroom methods and to point towards new ways of analyzing and presenting English lexis and grammar. They also set down key principles to direct research into classroom learning.
 
Article
The second language classroom has long been a center of research interest. In the last several years, attempts to examine the second language classroom—to clarify how the language classroom experience differs from what is available outside the classroom and how language classrooms differ among themselves—have been increasingly guided by a shared set of goals and premises. Classroom process research is based on the priority of direct observation of second language classroom activity and is directed primarily at identifying the numerous factors which shape the second language instructional experience. The result has been a marked departure from earlier research on the nature and effects of classroom instruction in a second language.Selected studies in three areas are reviewed: the linguistic environment of second language instruction, patterns of participation in the language classroom, and error treatment. Also reviewed are recent applications of introspective (mentalistic) research to the problem of describing the second language classroom experience.
 
Article
For this article we aimed to understand the emergence of English as a second language for a newly immigrated Mexican student, a native speaker of Spanish, enrolled in a mainstream kindergarten classroom, who was undergoing the silent period (Krashen, 1981). Applying ecological approaches that emphasize learners in relationship with their environment, we analyzed three particular classroom practices and their respective mediational roles for the development of a second language (L2). Following Tomasello's (1999, 2003) recognition that the understanding of communicative intentions is an essential prerequisite for language development, we argue that certain characteristics of routine classroom practices (i.e., shared objects, infrastructural elements, and speech patterns) provided key interactional and contextual affordances for the understanding and internalization of a shared system of symbols (linguistic and nonlinguistic) and, thus, for the emergence of the L2. This research suggests that our focal student was intentionally and actively engaged in L2 learning during this period of silence. In addition, our findings suggest that although the understanding of communicative intentions contributed to the legitimization of a student identity for the learner during the silent period, it did not contribute to the learning of academic content. We argue that ambiguity and multiplicity of intentions conveyed in some classroom actions may be particularly challenging for L2 learners in mainstream classrooms.
 
Article
Kent Hill recently completed his doctoral thesis titled Sociocognitive Metaphorm. He currently teaches English at Seigakuin University in Saitama, Japan.
 
Article
In most Western countries where English is the medium of instruction, there is a substantial gap in student success between immigrant English as a second language (ESL) students and non-ESL students. In the United States, this situation has been observed in particular with Latino ESL students. This article describes a longitudinal study of two cohorts of Latino ESL students and compares the success of students who mainstreamed into college-level content courses and those who did not. More specifically, drawing on quantitative transcript analysis and focus group discussions, this study examines several factors impacting the mobility of Latino ESL students in a large urban community college district in the United States. The qualitative analysis focused on several themes including challenges to navigating the curriculum, the significant role of ESL in providing opportunities to use English, and the supportive role of instructors. The quantitative analysis focused on mainstreaming, enrollment patterns, and success measures, including grade point average (GPA) and course-completion ratio. The findings suggest that students who mainstream earlier or concurrently enroll in content level courses are more successful in terms of course completion and GPA. Implications of the study are discussed in relation to placement, instruction, and further areas of research. Although the ESL programs and the linguistic-minority population of this study are located in the United States, the issues raised and lessons learned can enrich the broader international conversation surrounding language minority education.
 
Article
Ron Sheen has been involved in language teaching and research for the past 50 years. His interests include searching for empirically supported teaching options and critiquing advocacies that are not supported by empirical demonstration of their efficacy.
 
Article
Computer-mediated communication (CMC), which began in proprietary companies two decades ago, has developed into a worldwide medium of communication that ESOL learners encounter inside and outside the classroom. Because learners' participation in CMC is likely to increase in the coming years, it is important for TESOL professionals to understand the norms of language use developed by CMC-based speech communities. Research has found that CMC exhibits features of simplified registers associated with both oral and written language. It also exhibits its own norms for organizing conversation and accommodating threads of discourse. CMC, however, cannot be studied as a neutral linguistic phenomenon; instead, researchers and educators need to examine how CMC influences the dominance of English, access to knowledge and power, and equity in discourse. Distance learning, an application of CMC that has begun and will continue to serve a role in English language teaching and in ESOL teacher education, is an area in which these issues are relevant. CMC should be viewed not in terms of its functionality but in terms of the ways in which users shape a new medium of communication to fit the needs of their speech community.
 
Article
Because a significant proportion of real-life L2 communication is problematic, L2 learners might benefit from instruction on how to cope with performance problems. Such instruction could include the specific teaching of' communication strategies, which involve various verbal and nonverbal means of dealing with difficulties and breakdowns that occur in everyday communication. Opinions on the teachability of such strategies, however, vary widely, and several researchers have questioned the validity of strategy training. This article first describes what communication strategies are and provides an overview of the teachability issue, discussing the arguments for and against strategy instruction, and suggests three possible reasons for the existing controversy. After this the results of a study aimed at obtaining empirical data on the educational potential of strategy training are presented. The findings point to the possibility of developing the quality and quantity of learners' use of at least some communication strategies through focused instruction.
 
Article
This article examines how writers orient their readers in expository essays. A total of 110 essays (30 native English and 80 non-native English) were analyzed to explore the orienting skills of native and non-native English speakers. Results indicate that native English writers employ a wide variety of linguistic devices to engage their readers' attention and help their readers identify the participants, objects, and events about which they write. By contrast, non-native English writers are more limited in their ability to orient their readers. Despite the greater length of their orientations, their use of attention-engaging and clarifying devices is comparatively restricted.
 
Article
Arlene Clachar is associate professor of applied linguistics and sociolinguistics at the University of Miami, Florida. Her interests include the acquisition of written academic registers by speakers of standard English as a second dialect, namely, speakers of Caribbean Creole English and African American Vernacular English.
 
Article
TESOL Quarterly publishes brief commentaries on aspects of English language teaching. For this issue, we asked two educators to discuss the following question: At present, what are the major TESOL challenges in the Arabian Gulf region?
 
Article
Contrastive rhetoric studies with implications for the ESL writing classroom began with Robert Kaplan's 1966 study of some 600 L2 student essays. This work was exploratory and, to a degree, more intuitive than scientific, but valuable in establishing contrastive rhetoric as a new field of inquiry. It has also created controversy. Kaplan's diagrams of rhetorical patterns have been widely reprinted, appearing even in ESL composition textbooks. Indeed, it is in L2 writing classes that contrastive rhetoric work has the greatest potential practical application. The diagrams, with their implications in regard to patterns of written discourse, readily place contrastive rhetoric into the current traditional approach to teaching ESL writing (Silva, 1990), but contrastive rhetoric has not found much favor with those who adopt a process orientation to teaching writing. Proponents of process approaches maintain that contrastive rhetoric research examines the product only, detaching it from and ignoring both the contrastive rhetorical context from which the L2 writers emerge and the processes these writers may have gone through to produce a text. Furthermore, as a result of this research orientation toward the product, when the findings of contrastive rhetoric have been applied to L2 writing, they have, almost by definition, been prescriptive: In English we write like this; those who would write well in English must look at this pattern and imitate it. Modern contrastive rhetoric researchers, hoping to reconcile contrastive rhetoric to teaching composition, insist, perhaps somewhat defensively, that text-oriented research does not equal product-oriented writing instruction (Grabe & Kaplan, 1989). While that may be the case, in practice the diagrams have, in fact, been used to justify prescriptive approaches to teaching writing. Even more unfortunately, perhaps because of the simplicity of the diagrams, the findings of early contrastive rhetoric studies were
 
Article
TESOL Quarterly invites readers to submit short reports and updates on their work. These summaries may address any areas of interest to Quarterly readers.
 
Article
Introduction Since its publication in 1985, the outstanding 1,800-page Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language, by Randolph Quirk, Sidney Greenbaum, Geoffrey Leech, and Jan Svartvik, has been the definitive description of the grammar of English and an in-. dispensable reference for any research in the analysis or generation of English that attempts serious coverage of the syntactic phenomena of the language. The new Longman Grammar of Spoken and Written English, by Douglas Biber, Stig Johansson, Geoffrey Leech, Susan Conrad, and Edward Finegan, is an important complement to the earlier work, extending and sometimes revising the descriptions of Quirk et al., by means of an extensive corpus analysis by the five authors and their research assistants. Now, the bookshelf of any researcher in English linguistics is incomplete without both volumes. Like Quirk et al. (hereafter CGEL), Biber and his colleagues attempt a detailed description of all the syntactic phenomena of English. But
 
Article
Juliet Tembe is a lecturer in the Islamic University in Uganda, Mbale, Uganda, where she is active in English language teacher education. She is also a PhD candidate in the Department of Language and Literacy Education at the University of British Columbia in Canada.
 
Article
Stevens, Vance. 1983. Software review of English lessons on PLATO. TESOL Quarterly 17, 2:293-300. http://www.vancestevens.com/papers/archive/1983Stevens_PLATO.pdf - Produced when the reviewer was a graduate student at the University of Hawaii, this is a comprehensive examination of lessons appropriate to ESOL students hosted on the University of Illinois PLATO system available to subscribing institutions nationwide, in particular 40 grammar lessons designed for ESOL students. The review examines their many shortcomings but also their occasional innovative illustrations of grammar concepts showing appropriate uses of computers in illustrating these concepts for ELLs. The review gives insights into the state of the art of what was at the time known as CAI (computer assisted instructions) but was focusing rapidly onto what became known as CALL. This article is listed twice under my profile but this version is under an old profile that I have no control over, or perhaps it is under Dr. Richard Schmidt's profile, as I had to request to be acknowledged as author. Dr. Schmidt has unfortunately passed away and, for whatever reason, I don't seem to be able to obtain a full text from this profile. If you want the full text you should be able to download it from my more current profile.
 
Article
The TESOL Quarterly invites readers to submit short reports and updates on their work. These summaries may address any areas of interest to Quarterly readers. Authors' addresses are printed with these reports to enable interested readers to contact the authors for more details.
 
Top-cited authors
Bala Kumaravadivelu
  • San Jose State University
Donald Freeman
  • University of Michigan
Alastair Pennycook
  • University of Technology Sydney
Jack Richards
  • The University of Sydney
Vivian Cook
  • Newcastle University