Individual Differences in L2 Learning
Language and Linguistics
Postgraduate: Level 7
Monday 15 January 2024
Friday 22 March 2024
05 October 2023
Requisites for this module
MA Q11012 Applied Linguistics,
MA Q15012 Psycholinguistics,
PHD Q15048 Psycholinguistics
This module introduces you to selected psychological factors that interact with the processes and outcomes of second language (L2) learning.
You will become familiar with concepts such as language learning aptitude, cognitive and learning style, language learning strategies, metacognition, and working memory. We will discuss the definitions and measurement of these factors, their relationship with each other and with L2 achievement, and their practical relevance in the L2 classroom.
In addition, you will be given the opportunity to carry out your own small-scale empirical project during which you collect and analyse data on a selected individual difference variable in a single participant by means of a mixed-methods approach, e.g. on the basis of a test or questionnaire and an interview. An introduction to methodological issues will be provided, focusing on questionnaire design and interview preparation.
This module introduces you to selected psychological factors that interact with the processes and outcomes of second language (L2) learning. You will become familiar with concepts such as language learning aptitude, cognitive and learning style, language learning strategies, metacognition, and working memory. We will discuss the definitions and measurement of these factors, their relationship with each other and with L2 achievement, and their practical relevance in the L2 classroom.
By the end of the module, you will have attained a general overview of a range of cognitive variables that are relevant in the field of L2 learning. You will also have gained insight into how the theoretical definitions and the measurement of these variables have changed over time. By conducting your own case study, you will have had the chance to deepen your understanding of theoretical issues through the application of selected concepts in an empirical context. This type of work will help you with identifying and overcoming some of the methodological challenges posed by small-scale studies in the field of L2 learning and education. Furthermore, gaining some hands-on experience with data collection and analysis will serve as a useful preparation for MA projects conducted later in the year.
No additional information available.
We will have one 2-hour class each week for 10 weeks. Approximately one hour will be taught as a lecture and the other hour as a seminar. Lectures provide an overview of key theoretical insights, empirical research findings, and methodological issues; seminars are based on student-centred tasks such as follow-up exercises and discussion of issues brought up in the lectures and associated module readings. Discussion and questions are encouraged throughout.
Li, S., Hiver, P. and Papi, M. (eds) (2022) Routledge Handbook of Second Language Acquisition and Individual Differences
. Taylor & Francis Group. Available at: https://doi-org.uniessexlib.idm.oclc.org/10.4324/9781003270546
Zoltán Dörnyei and Stephen Ryan (2015) The psychology of the language learner revisited
. New York, NY: Routledge. Available at: http://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/e/9781315779553
Dörnyei, Z. (2005) The psychology of the language learner: individual differences in second language acquisition
. Mahwah, N.J.: L. Erlbaum Associates. Available at: https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=158555
Carol Griffiths (2008) Lessons from good language learners
. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511497667
Louis Cohen, Lawrence Manion and Keith Morrison (2018) Research methods in education
. Eighth edition. London: Routledge. Available at: https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&scope=site&db=nlebk&db=nlabk&AN=1614634
The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list
Assessment items, weightings and deadlines
|Coursework / exam
||Assignment 1 (1000 Words)
||Assignment 2 (2000 Words)
Exam format definitions
- Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
- In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
- In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
- In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary,
for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.
Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Karen Roehr-Brackin, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr Vivienne Esther Rogers
Available via Moodle
No lecture recording information available for this module.
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