Proposal Title

Why TRU Needs a Self-Access Language Learning Centre: Lessons Learned from Both an Underperforming and an Exceptional Language Learner

Presenter Information

Jason Brown, TRUFollow

Presentation Type

Regular Presentation

Location

OM 3612

Start Date

19-2-2019 12:45 PM

End Date

19-2-2019 1:25 PM

Proposal Abstract

This session will use the words of students themselves to relay two distinct language learning adventures. Though both narrators are twenty-year-old classmates registered in intermediate level English for Academic Purposes (EAP) classes, the adventures they each have to tell are quite different. Aki’s1 adventure is a tale of success. She says “I [am] very happy and interested in studying English…. I feel that my learning [is] successful.” Chen,[1] narrator of the second story, has been studying in Canada fulltime for four years. He has yet to have much success on his adventure. “I don’t like English, so my English level has been bad. Now I just keep alive with no problems. I don’t have more strategies for learning English”. This mixed-methods paired case study attempts to identify causes for such disparate adventures of two learners in the same program by analyzing contextual and individual difference factors such as motivation, anxiety, L2 Grit and learning strategies. Results show a shocking difference in L2 proficiencies between the two learners, something that has led to difficulties as these learners advance to academic studies. What guidance can Chen receive that might help him make his adventure more successful? The researcher argues for a new approach to supporting language learners at TRU that includes resources for a self-access learning centre staffed by language learning advisors who guide learners towards more self-directed approaches, using individualized learning plans, and meta-cognitive strategy training for future success. [1] Pseudonyms of participants are used to protect their identities.

Statement

This presentation is in-line with this year's theme as it relays two learners' language learning "adventures" using their own words, relates that to an issue faced by many academic instructors (low language proficiency levels), and recommends how pedagogy can be improved to deal with the issue.

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Feb 19th, 12:45 PM Feb 19th, 1:25 PM

Why TRU Needs a Self-Access Language Learning Centre: Lessons Learned from Both an Underperforming and an Exceptional Language Learner

OM 3612

This session will use the words of students themselves to relay two distinct language learning adventures. Though both narrators are twenty-year-old classmates registered in intermediate level English for Academic Purposes (EAP) classes, the adventures they each have to tell are quite different. Aki’s1 adventure is a tale of success. She says “I [am] very happy and interested in studying English…. I feel that my learning [is] successful.” Chen,[1] narrator of the second story, has been studying in Canada fulltime for four years. He has yet to have much success on his adventure. “I don’t like English, so my English level has been bad. Now I just keep alive with no problems. I don’t have more strategies for learning English”. This mixed-methods paired case study attempts to identify causes for such disparate adventures of two learners in the same program by analyzing contextual and individual difference factors such as motivation, anxiety, L2 Grit and learning strategies. Results show a shocking difference in L2 proficiencies between the two learners, something that has led to difficulties as these learners advance to academic studies. What guidance can Chen receive that might help him make his adventure more successful? The researcher argues for a new approach to supporting language learners at TRU that includes resources for a self-access learning centre staffed by language learning advisors who guide learners towards more self-directed approaches, using individualized learning plans, and meta-cognitive strategy training for future success. [1] Pseudonyms of participants are used to protect their identities.