The aim of this seminar is to develop reflective thinking in students as applied to the practice of teaching and researching in the field of English language teaching. The syllabus has been carefully selected and sequentially organised to broaden knowledge of the teacher in the role of the student, teacher, and researcher. With a combination of a practical and theoretical approach students are guided through a process of research, reflective thinking, data-gathering, data analysis and interpretation, and how to present results. Students deepen their theoretical understanding of Second Language Acquisition and differentiating factors in language learning through action research and a process of reflective writing. Practical skills are developed by exploring and designing the appropriate data-gathering tools used to evaluate second language acquisition, and through developing the necessary skills to implement a research project and present results in a report.
In this seminar, which deals with theory and practice, students are encouraged to reflect on their beliefs, experience, and practice from the perspective of the language learner, teacher, and as a researcher. Through research on Second Language Acquisition theory and the process of reflective enquiry, students are guided through an understanding of the English language teacher in these three roles. Throughout this process, students will acquire the necessary research skills that enable them to determine a focus of investigation, select and implement appropriate data-gathering tools; analyse and interpret data, and present conclusions in a report. This seminar has as its main objectives to develop in students the capability to reflect on their own researcher competences, to learn how to better recognize factors that affect learning and to apply new knowledge and methodologies to their teaching practice.
The “Learning, Teaching and Researching” Seminar course syllabus consists of the following learning contents:
1) Learning how to differentiate language learners;
2) Understanding language learners - Second Language Acquisition (SLA;)
3) Develop research strategies: determining a focus and object of study;
4) Learning about how to develop data-gathering tools for adequate research;
5) Analysing and interpreting data: starting a research report;
6) Writing a report.
Brown, J. D., & Coombe, C. (Eds.). (2015). The Cambridge Guide to Research in Language Teaching and Learning. Cambridge University Press.
Dörnyei, Z. (2007). Research Methods in Applied Linguistics: Quantitative, Qualitative, and Mixed Methodologies. Oxford University Press.
Dörnyei, Z. (2005). The Psychology of the Language Learner. Individual Differences in Second Language Learning, Mahwah, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Ellis, R. (2015). Understanding Second Language Acquisition. 2nd Edition. Oxford University Press.
Larsen-Freeman, Diane. (2002). Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching. Oxford University Press.
Lightbown, P.M. and Spada, N. (2013). How Languages are Learned. Handbooks for Language Teachers (4th Edition). Oxford University Press.
Richards, Jack, C., and Lockhart, Charles. (2009) Reflective Teaching in Second Language Classrooms. Cambridge University Press.
Ortega, Lourdes. (2013) Understanding Second Language Acquisition. Routledge Taylor and Francis.
The Seminar is delivered online through UAb’s online learning Moodle platform. Students follow a pre-defined course structure in the Learning Contract and are guided through the learning content by teacher. The course is divided into topics.
Students are expected to work individually on weekly tasks which address the content matter of each topic, but also collaboratively. An essential part of the course is based on reflecting on the content and the learning process through active online participation.
In this seminar students are evaluated through continuous assessment which includes: participation in weekly activities: reading, reflections and forum discussions (20%), two reflective journal diary entries (2x20%) and a final research report where students demonstrate the application of the knowledge, skills and understanding of key concepts acquired in the course of the seminar (40%) adding to a total of 100% (20 marks).
Language of instruction: English