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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 1 June 2019

Ali Asghar Ghasemi, Hooshang Yazdani and Mohammad Amin Mozaheb

This study explores whether metacognitive strategy training can influence the lexical knowledge of L2 learners of the present study, and what they think about the use of…

Abstract

This study explores whether metacognitive strategy training can influence the lexical knowledge of L2 learners of the present study, and what they think about the use of metacognitive strategies in language learning classes. To do so, a 50-item multiple-choice vocabulary test, developed by the researchers based upon Nation’s (1990) levels of language proficiency, was employed to measure the learners’ vocabulary knowledge progress during the period of instruction. The instruction received by the experimental group was based on the Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach (CALLA) Model, developed and validated by Chamot and O’Malley (1994). The findings revealed that the experimental group outperformed the control group in their endeavors for comprehending and producing vocabulary. This may be attributed to the fact that after this intervention, participants have developed their metacognitive awareness and their thinking skills. The study concludes with pedagogical implications and highlights avenues for future research.

ﺗ مّ د ﻣ ﺞ ا ﺳ ﺗ ر ا ﺗ ﯾ ﺟ ﯾ ﺎ ت ﻣ ﺎ و ر ا ء ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﯾ ﺔ (MS) ، ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻲ ﺗ ﻌ ﺗ ﺑ ر ا ﻟ ﻔ ﺋ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﻔ ر ﻋ ﯾ ﺔ ا ﻟ ر ﺋ ﯾ ﺳ ﯾ ﺔ ﻻ ﺳ ﺗ ر ا ﺗ ﯾ ﺟ ﯾ ﺎ ت ﺗ ﻌ ﻠّ م ا ﻟ ﻠّ ﻐ ﺔ ﻓ ﻲ ﻣ ﻧ ﺎ ھ ﺞ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠّ م ا ﻟ ﻠّ ﻐ ﺔ ا ﻷ ﺟ ﻧ ﺑ ﯾ ﺔ ﻟ ﺗ ﺳ ﮭ ﯾ ل ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻔ ﻛ ﯾ ر ا ﻟ ﻌ ﺎ ﻟ ﻲ و ا ﻟ ﺗ ﺧ ط ﯾ ط ا ﻟ ذ ا ﺗ ﻲ و ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠّ م ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺳ ﺗ ﻘِّل و ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠ م ا ﻷ ﻓ ﺿ ل ﻓ ﻲ ﻧ ﮭ ﺎ ﯾ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﻣ ط ﺎ ف . و ﻓ ﻘًﺎ ﻟ ذ ﻟ ك ، ﺗ ﻌ دّ ھ ذ ه ا ﻟ دّر ا ﺳ ﺔ ﻣ ﺣ ﺎ و ﻟ ﺔً ﻟ ﻺ ﺟ ﺎ ﺑ ﺔ ﻋ ﻣ ﺎ إ ذ ا ﻛ ﺎ ن ا ﻟ ﺗ د ر ﯾ ب ﻋ ﻠ ﻰ ا ﺳ ﺗ ر ا ﺗ ﯾ ﺟ ﯾ ﺔ ﻣ ﺎ و ر ا ء ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﻲ ﯾ ﻣ ﻛ ن أ ن ﯾ ؤ ﺛّ ر ﻋ ﻠ ﻰ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﻣُﻌ ﺟ ﻣ ﯾ ﺔ ﻟ ﻠ ﻣ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠ ﻣ ﯾ ن و ﻣ ﺎ ذ ا ﯾ ﻔ ﻛّر ﻓ ﯾ ﮫ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠّ ﻣ و ن ﺣ ول ﺗ د ر ﯾ س ا ﺳ ﺗ ر ا ﺗ ﯾ ﺟ ﯾ ﺎ ت ﻣ ﺎ و ر ا ء ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﯾ ﺔ . و ﻟ ﻠ ﻘ ﯾ ﺎ م ﺑ ذ ﻟ ك ، ﺗ مّ ا ﺳ ﺗ ﺧ د ا م ا ﺧ ﺗ ﺑ ﺎ ر ﻣ ﻛ و ن ﻣ ن 50 ﻋ ﻧ ﺻ ر اً ﻣ ﺗ ﻌ د د ا ﻻ ﺧ ﺗ ﯾ ﺎ ر ا ت ا ﻟّ ذ ي ﺗ مّ ﺗ ط و ﯾ ر ه ﺑ و ا ﺳ ط ﺔ ا ﻟ ﺑ ﺎ ﺣ ﺛ ﯾ ن ا ﺳ ﺗ ﻧ ﺎ دًا إ ﻟ ﻰ ﻣ ﺳ ﺗ و ﯾ ﺎ ت ا ﻟ ﻛ ﻔ ﺎ ء ة ا ﻟ ﻠ ﻐ و ﯾ ﺔ ﻟ د ى ا ﻟ ﺷ ﻌ ب (Nation) (1990 م ( ، ﻟ ﻘ ﯾ ﺎ س ﺗ ط وّ ر ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻔ ر د ا ت أ ﺛ ﻧ ﺎ ء ﻓ ﺗ ر ة اﻟ ﺗد ر ﯾ س . ا ﺳ ﺗ ﻧ د ت ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠ ﯾ ﻣ ﺎ ت ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻲ ﺗ ﻠ ﻘّﺗ ﮭ ﺎ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺟ ﻣ و ﻋ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﺗ ﺟ ر ﯾ ﺑ ﯾ ﺔ إ ﻟ ﻰ ﻧ ﻣ و ذ ج ﻣ ﻧ ﮭ ﺞ ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠ م ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﻲ ا ﻷ ﻛ ﺎ د ﯾ ﻣ ﻲ ) CALLA ( ا ﻟ ذّي أ ﻋ دّه و و ا ﻓ ق ﻋﻠ ﯾ ﮫ ﺷﺎ ﻣو ت وأ وﻣﺎﻟ ﻲ ) 1994 ( . ﻛ ﺷ ﻔ ت ا ﻟ ﻧ ﺗ ﺎ ﺋ ﺞ أ نّ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺟ ﻣ و ﻋ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﺗ ﺟ ر ﯾ ﺑ ﯾ ﺔ ﺗ ﻔ و ﻗ ت ﻋ ﻠ ﻰ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺟ ﻣ و ﻋ ﺔ ا ﻟ ﺗ ﺣ ﻛ ﻣ ﯾ ﺔ ﺑ ﺎ ﻟ ﻧّﺳ ﺑ ﺔ ﻟ ﻔ ﮭ م و إ ﻧ ﺗ ﺎ ج ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻔ ر د ا ت . ﻣن اﻟ ﻣﻣﮑن أ ن ﯾﻌود ذ ﻟ ك إ ﻟ ﻰ ﺣ ﻘ ﯾ ﻘ ﺔ أ نّ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺗ ﻌ ﻠ ﻣ ﯾ ن ﺑ ﻌ د ھ ذ ا ا ﻟ ﻌ ﻼ ج ﯾ ﻣ ﻛ ﻧ ﮭ م ا ﻟ ﺗ ﻔ ﻛ ﯾ ر أ ﻛ ﺛ ر و ر ا ء ا ﻟ ﻣ ﻌ ر ﻓ ﯾ ﺔ و ﺗ ط و ﯾ ر ﺗ ﻘ دّم ﺗ ﻔ ﻛ ﯾ ر ھ م . ﺗ ﺧ ﺗ ﺗ م ا ﻟ دّر ا ﺳ ﺔ ﺑ ذ ﮐ ر ﺑ ﻌ ض ا ﻵ ﻓ ﺎ ق ا ﻟ ﺗ ر ﺑ و ﯾّﺔ و ﺗ ﺳ ﻠ ﯾ ط ا ﻟ ﺿّو ء ﻋ ﻠ ﻰ ﺑ ﻌ ض ا ﻟ ﺳّﺑ ل ﻟ ﻠ ﺑ ﺣ ث ﻓ ﻲ ا ﻟ ﻣ ﺳ ﺗ ﻘ ﺑ ل .

Details

Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives, vol. 16 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2077-5504

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 31 May 2021

Wagdi Rashad Ali Bin-Hady and Nasser Omer Mubarak Al-Tamimi

This study aims to explore the use of technology-based strategies by Yemeni undergraduate students to develop their English as a foreign language skills in informal…

1654

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the use of technology-based strategies by Yemeni undergraduate students to develop their English as a foreign language skills in informal learning settings.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed methods research design was used to collect quantitative and qualitative data from 110 undergraduate students enrolled at the English Departments in two universities in Yemen. In the first phase of the study, 10 students were interviewed to obtain information about their use of technology to develop their English language skills and subsystems in informal settings. Following the analysis of the interview data, a questionnaire was built to collect quantitative data, and the second phase of the study was carried out with 100 undergraduate students.

Findings

The findings revealed that students developed four technology-based strategies that they used in informal settings. These strategies included using social media, being inspired by someone, accessing social networks and websites. Students reported that these strategies helped them develop their listening, speaking and reading skills, while they also reported that their vocabulary was enhanced over grammar and pronunciation.

Research limitations/implications

The study findings can be of benefit not only for helping to raise students’ awareness of informal learning strategies to develop their English skills outside the classroom but also for teachers to rethink the importance of integrating technology tools and digital resources in their teaching practice. The results could also guide curriculum designers to augment textbook materials by integrating technology-based informal learning strategies.

Originality/value

This is the first study on this topic conducted in the context of higher education in Yemen and offers unique insights into informal learning practices of Yemeni students. In addition, the findings of the study open new dimensions for rethinking the classification of language learning strategies to include those that are technology-based and mainly useful for independent informal learning.

Details

Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN:

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 29 March 2011

Yaacov J. Katz and Yaacov B. Yablon

The purpose of the paper is to examine the efficiency of SMS based cell‐phone vocabulary learning as compared to email vocabulary delivery and snail mail vocabulary…

1687

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to examine the efficiency of SMS based cell‐phone vocabulary learning as compared to email vocabulary delivery and snail mail vocabulary delivery at the university level.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 241 first year university students studied English vocabulary in their mandatory English foundation course. Students were divided into three groups: study via cell‐phone based SMS messages, via email messages and via snail mail delivery. Vocabulary lists were delivered weekly to students via the three delivery strategies during course. Students in the three groups were tested on English vocabulary and responded to a questionnaire that examined their attitudes toward flexibility of the learning strategy; user friendliness of the learning strategy; learner control of the learning process, learner motivation; and learner autonomy.

Findings

Results of the study indicate that there were no significant differences for achievement attained by the three groups on the vocabulary test. However, there were significant differences on students' attitudes toward flexibility of learning; user friendliness of the learning strategy; learner control of the learning process, learner motivation; and learner autonomy. The students who received SMS messages had most positive attitudes on all five factors, followed by attitudes of students who received email messages, who were followed by attitudes of students who received vocabulary via snail mail.

Practical implications

It appears that SMS based vocabulary delivery is perceived as more effective than email delivery which is felt to be more efficient than snail mail learning. Results of the study indicate the potential for university vocabulary learning via cell‐phone based SMS messaging.

Originality/value

This paper indicates the value of SMS messaging for vocabulary learning at the university level.

Details

Campus-Wide Information Systems, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1065-0741

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 25 October 2018

Norah Almusharraf

An examination of the research literature suggests that no attempt has been made to examine learner autonomy development within female university-level English as a…

4174

Abstract

Purpose

An examination of the research literature suggests that no attempt has been made to examine learner autonomy development within female university-level English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Given that English has become the world’s predominant lingua franca for academia, business, and politics, the purpose of this paper, therefore, is to fill this gap in the literature.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a qualitative case study that aims to explore learner autonomy in vocabulary development.

Findings

The results showed that teachers are cognizant of the concept of learner autonomy. However, they are not all certain of the benefits of autonomous vocabulary learning. This study reveals how six adult learners’ levels of autonomy are highly influenced by their teachers’ practices. This study draws out suggestions for English language teachers who promote learner autonomy theory and practice. It also offers specific guidance, models, and adapted learning approaches of how to promote autonomy inside the classroom.

Research limitations/implications

This study encountered several limitations. The first is time: the study took place over the course of two months in the Summer of 2016, when students were fully encumbered with schoolwork and social duties. The recruitment of participants during that time was a challenge. Some of the students who agreed to participate in the study were not fully engaged in the research. Additionally, the study faced difficulties with faculty commitment – one of the professors delayed the interview session multiple times and perceived some of the interview questions negatively. In addition, Dickinson’s (1993) characteristics of learner autonomy are largely related to the opportunities that are presented to the students by the teacher. It appears that Dickinson’s scale was meant to be used to identify students’ level of autonomy, particularly inside the classroom. However, because of some of the examples of activities pertaining to how they learned vocabulary outside the classroom, they were not related to classroom teaching. Also, the number of the participants is limited in this study.

Practical implications

A future study could be undertaken to measure and quantitatively analyze learners’ vocabulary development on a larger scale. Research could also be conducted using a pretest, an intervention, and a posttest to measure the effectiveness of learning vocabulary autonomously. In addition, other pedagogical approaches could be utilized to measure EFL students’ intrinsic motivation and autonomy, which play critical roles in learning. Allowing learners to self-select their preferred method of learning can help them to develop their vocabulary knowledge. The findings from this study reveal that learner autonomy plays a significant role in enhancing EFL students’ vocabulary development.

Originality/value

When students learn vocabulary autonomously, they are better able to source the lingua franca’s core pronunciation of a word and its spelling without the influence of the teacher’s cultural background. Given the magnitude of teachers’ workloads, they may lack the time for designing lessons that adequately meet the needs of diverse learners. Therefore, the practical way to ameliorate the problem of inadequate time is to provide them with methods (e.g. using strategies such as inquiry-based learning, problem-based learning, and project-based learning) that they can use to more readily foster learner autonomy.

Details

Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching & Learning, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2397-7604

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 11 May 2022

Daniel Juan Cabugsa

The present quantitative-descriptive study aims to measure the level of English language learning autonomy of the pre-service teachers.

Abstract

Purpose

The present quantitative-descriptive study aims to measure the level of English language learning autonomy of the pre-service teachers.

Design/methodology/approach

A short list questionnaire developed by Dixon (2011) was administered to 61 pre-service English teachers enrolled in Western Mindanao State University in order to measure their English language learning autonomy. Differences on the levels of English language learning autonomy across participants’ gender, number of languages spoken and first language were also explored.

Findings

Results revealed that participants are highly autonomous in English language learning. Gender, number of languages spoken and first language were found to have no significant influence on English language learning autonomy.

Research limitations/implications

Results on the level of English language learning autonomy indicate that pre-service teachers are highly autonomous and, therefore, ready for lifelong learning. This implies pedagogical and instructional advantages, as they can learn and explore the language independently.

Practical implications

Since gender, number of languages spoken and first language do not significantly influence the level of English language learning autonomy, it is suggested that English teachers do not need to develop differentiated instructions and activities anymore, which will cater the three profile variables in fostering autonomous learning, as participants already exhibit a level of autonomy in English language learning.

Social implications

This would allow teachers and students to be aware of the importance of autonomy in language learning. Thus, it will prepare them to be independent and lifelong learners, as they engage themselves in the professional world.

Originality/value

As one of the Asia’s developing countries, the Philippines have captured a small number of studies and contributions to autonomous learning in the field of research (Madrunio, Tarrayo, Tupas and Valdez, 2016 as cited in Iñigo, 2018). Specifically, there is no research study conducted that measures “language learning autonomy” in the Philippine’s higher education much to the knowledge of the researcher. Thus, this study will be the first one to determine the level of autonomy of pre-service teachers in English language learning in the Philippine context. Furthermore, the present study also intended to determine significant differences on the level of language learning autonomy of pre-service teachers across genders, number of languages spoken and their first language.

Details

Saudi Journal of Language Studies, vol. 2 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2634-243X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 26 November 2020

Francesca D’Angelo

Traditional didactic approaches to multiple language learning have mainly focused on the differences and similarities between languages. However, in the language learning

Abstract

Traditional didactic approaches to multiple language learning have mainly focused on the differences and similarities between languages. However, in the language learning classroom, the willingness to activate prior language knowledge has been generally overlooked, despite being a fundamental part of the actual process of language learning Accordingly, the author suggests that the traditional contrastive method should be complemented by a psycholinguistic approach with the aim of exploiting the interlinguistic strategies used in language teaching and learning. An alternative methodological approach that looks at the whole linguistic repertoire of students is needed in order to exploit the benefits of multilingual education, going beyond linguistic similarities and differences. Following a detailed analysis of the relevant literature in the field, which identifies metalinguistic awareness as the most important factor enhancing bilinguals’ outcomes in additional language learning, the present chapter deals with its implications for a multilingual didactic approach. In particular, students must be stimulated and assisted in the process of conscious reflection and manipulation of language, learning strategies, and linguistic skills developed in previous linguistic systems to observe a positive and significant outcome in third (or additional) language acquisition (TLA). School curricula and teaching practices could benefit from placing the multilingual learners and their entire linguistic repertoire at the center of the learning process, rather than focusing exclusively on the target language.

Details

Technology-enhanced Learning and Linguistic Diversity: Strategies and Approaches to Teaching Students in a 2nd or 3rd Language
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-128-8

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 November 2014

Nicole Johnston, Helen Partridge and Hilary Hughes

This paper aims to outline research that explores the information literacy experiences of English as a foreign language (EFL) students. The question explored in this…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to outline research that explores the information literacy experiences of English as a foreign language (EFL) students. The question explored in this research was: how do EFL students experience information literacy?

Design/methodology/approach

This study used phenomenography, a relational approach to explore the information literacy experiences of EFL students. Phenomenography studies the qualitatively different ways a phenomenon is experienced in the world around us.

Findings

This research revealed that EFL students experienced information literacy in four qualitatively different ways. The four categories revealed through the data were: process, quality, language and knowledge. This research found that language impacted on EFL students’ experiences of information literacy and revealed that EFL students applied various techniques and strategies when they read, understood, organised and translated information.

Research limitations/implications

This research was conducted in a specific cultural and educational context; therefore, the results might not reflect the experiences of EFL students in other cultural or educational contexts.

Practical implications

The findings from this research offer an important contribution to information literacy practice by providing important insights about EFL students’ experiences and perceptions of information and learning that can be used to inform curriculum development in second language learning contexts.

Originality/value

There is currently a lack of research using a relational approach to investigate EFL students’ experiences of information literacy. There is also limited research that explores the impact language has on information literary and learning in EFL or English as a second language (ESL) contexts.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 42 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 1 June 2015

Tanju Deveci

Acquiring a foreign language may be a lifelong endeavor, and this requires one to approach it from a lifelong learning perspective. However, learners may not always be…

Abstract

Acquiring a foreign language may be a lifelong endeavor, and this requires one to approach it from a lifelong learning perspective. However, learners may not always be ready for such an approach. It is important to know where learners stand in their orientations toward learning and consider this when planning educational activities. Therefore, it is necessary to determine language learners’ readiness for lifelong learning (LLL) in order to support their language development. This paper reports the findings of a study conducted to identify the LLL propensities of some Turkish and Emirati university students learning English as a foreign language in their local contexts. The study included 61 Emirati and 47 Turkish students, with a mean age of 19. Data were collected using a research tool with three sections: Demographics, the Lifelong Learning Tendency Scale (LLLTS – developed by Coskun & Demirel (2012)), and a survey with six open-ended questions. Student’s t-test, the Kruskal-Wallis test and the Mann-Whitney U-test were used to compare the quantitative data in terms of the participants’ nationalities, gender and length of study. The results showed that both Turkish and Emirati students had a moderate level of propensity for LLL. However, the Turkish students’ overall LLLTS scores as well as certain sub-skills were found to be higher than those of the Emirati students. Gender was not found to make a significant difference in the students’ LLL orientations, while motivation was found to be lower at a statistically significant level for those learning English for more than a year. Suggestions are offered for the development of language learners’ LLL skills.

Details

Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2077-5504

Article
Publication date: 25 September 2020

Zahid Hussain Pathan, Shaik Abdul Malik Mohamed Ismail and Irum Fatima

A plethora of research highlights the pernicious effects of English language learning demotivation on students' language learning outcomes. Therefore, to prevent students'…

Abstract

Purpose

A plethora of research highlights the pernicious effects of English language learning demotivation on students' language learning outcomes. Therefore, to prevent students' demotivation has been a challenging task for the English language teachers. To shed fresh insight into this problem, the prime purpose of the present study was to examine the possible constituents of Pakistani university students' language learning demotivation, and how they interact with the resilience and the two personality dimensions (i.e. conscientiousness and openness to experience).

Design/methodology/approach

The present quantitative research study administered a questionnaire consisting of four parts to 215 undergraduate students who were enrolled in the two public universities in Quetta, the capital city of Balochistan province of Pakistan. To analyze the data, both descriptive and inferential statistics were performed with the SPSS (version 24).

Findings

The results identified both external and internal salient demotivating factors. The external factors included classroom environment, classroom learning materials, characteristics of classes, whereas lack of language learning interest and experiences of failure were the internal factors. Additionally, the results of simple linear regressions and multiple linear regressions also revealed that resilience and the two personality dimensions influenced the English language learning demotivation.

Practical implications

The prevalence of demotivation in the language classrooms necessitates Pakistani university English language teachers to adopt motivational teaching strategies to elicit, enhance and sustain language learners' motivation. The present study also draws the attention of the university teachers to foster students' resilience, conscientiousness and openness to prevent their language learning demotivation. The findings also implicate the ministry of education of Pakistan to equip educational institutes with language learning facilities to lower the burgeoning issue of students' language learning demotivation.

Originality/value

The present study provides empirical evidence regarding the interaction of resilience and personality with demotivation in the Pakistani context and contributes to the sparse existing knowledge on this issue. Additionally, the present study also establishes the knowledge that despite experiencing demotivation, language learners can regain language learning motivation through their resilience as well as behavioral patterns (i.e. being conscientious and open).

Details

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, vol. 13 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-7003

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 August 2016

Shartriya Collier, Betty Burston and Aarika Rhodes

A review of current initiatives to increase science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) achievement among American youth and young adults reveals the presence…

1053

Abstract

Purpose

A review of current initiatives to increase science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) achievement among American youth and young adults reveals the presence of “IQism”. That is, whether such interventions are directed toward low-income minorities and/or the disproportionate number of higher-income youth who have selected liberal arts majors over an STEM major, the country has reserved STEM as a field for “the best and the brightest”. Utilizing the Theory of Multiple Intelligences, this article argues that STEM content is accessible to all students including those whose first language is informal rather than formal English. Based upon these premises, this conceptual paper aims to introduce the framework of Teaching STEM as a Second Language as a strategy for elevating STEM achievement among students who would otherwise be excluded from the STEM movement.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper utilizes a review of both classic and current literature on second language acquisition to identify strategies that can be adopted by STEM instructors to increase STEM achievement among youth and young adults who are viewed as “average” and/or “below-average” academic performers.

Findings

Using quotes that confirm the thesis that STEM subject matter has been historically viewed as the domain of those whose cognitive skills place them among the “best and the brightest”, the second language acquisition (SLA) strategy of “scaffolding” is introduced as a pedagogy for producing “comprehensible output” when STEM content is taught to students whose first language is informal English. Constructivism, a concept currently used to guide the teaching of STEM contents is introduced as a framework that merges best practices in STEM and SLA. Using Cummins’ (1991) Common Underlying Proficiency Model, other strategies are also proposed for exporting SLA pedagogies and approaches to elevate equity in the quest to improve STEM achievement levels among youth and adults in the USA.

Originality/value

SLA theories and concepts have not been applied as a potential tool for teaching STEM. This is a unique and powerful lens that can be used to more effectively support the needs of underrepresented populations.

Details

Journal for Multicultural Education, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-535X

Keywords

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