Volume 2 (2011) Issue 2
Table of Contents
Kay Cheng Soh (Singapore):
Bilingual ability of students has traditionally been tested by using separate monolingual tests. Such tests more often than not differ in both substantive and linguistic content and task format, thus testing something different from one another. This mode of assessing bilingual ability introduces more error variance due to the extraneous factors and thus under-estimates the students’ ability to function with two languages. Bilingual tests can be constructed simply by bringing two languages into one testing task using one language for the questions and the other for the answers (options in the case of multiple-choice items). The results of testing a group of Grade 3-5 students in Singapore support this contention. Implications for curriculum and instruction for developing bilingual ability are discussed.
Lance R. Askildson (Notre Dame (IN) USA):
The role of phonology in L2 reading was investigated via the Reading While Listening (RWL) technique for L2 reading instruction. The present study tested the reading gain of 43 L2 readers of French before and after a RWL treatment was administered and compared this gain with the performance of a control silent reading group consisting of an additional 34 L2 readers of French. The results support a significant gain for the RWL treatment group with a corresponding insignificant gain for the control group. Additionally, the difference in gain between the experimental and control groups was statistically significant. Pedagogical implications are discussed alongside recommendations for future research.
Bernd Spillner (Duisburg-Essen, Germany):
In the present article, exceptionally published in Farsi and English, the most important types of pragmatic equivalence are described and applied to a selection of texts linked to the field of intercultural marketing. The empirical analysis carried out in the present study which focusses on the text type offer published in catalogues of mail delivery houses and holiday catalogues reveals that texts are differently rendered in different languages and on different cultural backgrounds, with those expectations actualised which are prevalent in the culture(s) in question. The findings presented entail a potential of improving future translators’ intercultural awareness and doubtlessly are fruitful for the teaching of foreign languages in general.
Shing-Lung Chen (Kaohsiung, Taiwan):
Existent learning systems for essay writing have mainly been developed by engineers. These systems usually offer learners a platform to write their essays on the computer. However, to date, there is a lack of genuine helping systems, specifically developed for learners, to assist them in producing essays. Corpora which are available on the Internet and which are frequently used as reference, mostly compile specialized texts written by native speakers. Therefore, the expressions used in those texts go well beyond the learners’ language level and thus do not meet their needs. This paper describes a newly developed automatic learning system for essay writing which provides learners with theme-orientated model essays, with expressions appropriate for them and with commonly made mistakes so that these can be avoided from the start.
Hans W. Giessen (Saarbrücken, Germany):
In the present study, three different ways of vocabulary learning were presented to students. The first group of students was given a vocabulary list on a paper sheet. The second group learned from the very same list presented on a computer screen, while the third group learned the same lexical items from a computer screen which included morphing effects. In the third group, learning achievements were the worst. Achievements were found to be the best in the first group in which the learning material was presented on a paper sheet. These effects may result from the degree of activation of the amygdala.
II. University Reports
Beate Lindemann (Tromsø, Norway):
The number of students studying German as a foreign language (GFL) at Norwegian universities and colleges is decreasing. The following article investigates the recent situation in the Norwegian field of GFL by analysing the programmes and courses offered at the different institutions. Almost every seminar course seems to be (unofficially) intended for teacher-training students. Courses for other types of students appear to be missing. However, there are four programmes especially meant for other learners. These have been analysed to mainly consist of the same courses. Only few students take those courses anyway. The results elaborated raise the question whether there is a demand for competence in German language and culture in Norway, at all. Still, the Norwegian industry and commerce claim a huge demand for employees with this kind of competence. The article concludes that there is a need for deeper changes of the programmes and courses offered.
Thomas Tinnefeld (Saarbrücken, Germany):
The article reports on the First Saarbrücken Conference on Foreign Language Teaching which featured the theme “University Language Teaching – Trends, Requirements Characteristics” and took place on November 4th and 5th, 2011, at Saarland University of Applied Sciences (Rotenbühl Campus), Germany. The article represents a complete report of the conference, which was attended by around 130 participants from 20 countries and in the framework of which two keynote speeches and 52 talks were given. The thematic scope of the conference included linguistics, methodology, languages for specific purposes, intercultural learning and e-learning. The conference, which was evaluated as successful, is the first one of a new series of conferences and will be continued in 2013.
III. Book Review
Zahir Mumin (Albany (NY), USA):