Second Language Learning

The details
Essex Pathways
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Foundation/Year Zero: Level 3
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
19 June 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA QX41 Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) (Including Foundation Year),
BA QQ16 English Language and Linguistics (Including Foundation Year),
BA QQ24 English Language and Literature (Including Foundation Year),
BA RR20 French Studies and Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RR90 German Studies and Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA LR59 International Relations and Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RR40 Italian Studies and Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA Q143 Language Studies (4 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA Q102 Linguistics (Including Foundation Year),
BA R999 Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RQ99 Modern Languages and English Language (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RQ98 Modern Languages and Linguistics (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA R8T8 Modern Languages and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA R8T9 Modern Languages with Latin American Studies (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA V590 Philosophy with Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RR50 Spanish Studies and Modern Languages (5 Years Including Foundation Year),
BA RT99 Spanish, Portuguese and Brazilian Studies (5 Years Including Foundation Year)

Module description

This module is designed to prepare students wishing to join a degree course in the Department of Language and Linguistics. It considers some of the theoretical underpinnings of second language acquisition and how these considerations can help inform second language teaching and learning. The areas of focus will include: the learner, the classroom environment and society.

Module aims

• To introduce and explain linguistic terms related to language acquisition and language learning.

• To raise students' awareness of key issues and current debate within second language learning and how languages interact with society;

• To broaden students' knowledge of linguistic theory through application of theory.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module students will be expected to be able to:

1. Account for some of the key considerations between language learning and language acquisition;

2. Understand the role of the learner and individual differences;

3. Demonstrate awareness of the roles second languages play in society;

4. Demonstrate knowledge of key linguistic concepts and theories and have the skills to carry out linguistic analyses;

5. Interpret linguistic research and apply to the study of linguistics.

Module information


Second Language Acquisition
Second Language Learning
The learner and individual differences
L2 competence and proficiency
Motivation in Second Language Learning
The classroom environment and instructed Second Language Learning
Classroom research
The Second Language environment and the role of second language in society

Summer term: revision and exam preparation


Formative assessment
Reading-to-write task. Summary of key learning / acquisition concept (500 words) due in week 6.

Summative assessment
* An essay exploring the differences between second language acquisition and second language learning, or the learner (20%);
* A portfolio consisting of two guided classroom observation task sheets and related reflections on processes (40%);
* An essay on the role of second language in society (30%);
* Participation mark consisting of classroom contribution and peer support (10%).

Reassessment strategy

Failed Coursework: Resubmit a piece of coursework (1,500 words) which will be marked as 100% of the new module mark. The reassessment task will enable the relevant learning outcomes to be met.

Learning and teaching methods

This module will run over 22 weeks and be delivered via a two-hour interactive lecture and two one-hour seminar per week. Students will be expected to have done the prescribed reading for the sessions so that they can fully participate in discussions. The field of linguistics will be introduced at a level accessible for all students and no prior knowledge of the discipline area is required.

Learning support
Students are expected to engage with Moodle for materials and support activities for their continuous learning opportunities. Students will be supported in their research skills, essay writing, referencing and bibliographical procedures within this discipline. Students are also supported through the Listen Again facility and use of technology in their teaching and learning.


This module does not appear to have any essential texts. To see non-essential items, please refer to the module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework IA150 - Participation 10%
Coursework IA150 - Essay 1,000 words 29/11/2019 20%
Coursework IA150 - Portfolio 1,000 words 14/02/2020 40%
Coursework IA150 - Essay 1,500 words 24/04/2020 30%

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Ritta Husted
Becky Humphreys (becky.humphreys@essex.ac.uk or 01206 872217)



External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Available via Moodle
Of 87 hours, 87 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information
Essex Pathways

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