L2 learning through interaction
MetadataShow full item record
With the emphasis on the classroom as one of the most important places where language learning occurs, the study presented in this dissertation looked at classroom interaction occurring in a class of adult ESL learners in a university-based intensive English language program (IEP). The study is based on the sociocultural perspective of language and learning, which views language learning as a process of socialization into competent participation in socioculturally significant language practices. Using the data collected during seven weeks, this research investigated 1) the functional characteristics of interactions that the participants construct in their classroom interactions with the emphasis on teacher’s contributions that elicit students’ contributions; 2) the characteristics of students’ contributions in terms of lexical density and mean length of words, their functions, and any possible change in students’ participation over time. Finally, the major turn-taking interaction pattern was Initiation-Response-Follow up (IRF) and the students differently responded according to the types of teacher’s utterances. Generally, the changes in students’ responses in terms of the number and quality of turns over the whole semester were not obvious. However this study is significant because it looks at how students’ contributions change over time and it also documents their characteristics by using specific analytical frameworks. Since few studies of adult L2 learning have focused on interaction in the classroom from a sociocultural perspective, and even less on IEP, this study will contribute to the L2 learning literature by examining interaction in adult classroom in terms of getting at the micro details of what teachers consider exemplary. This study will also help ESL practitioners have more specific ideas (strategies) about how to guide culturally diverse adult ESL students in the classroom, showing some situations in the classroom where language learning occurs.