New PDF release: Computers in applied linguistics: an international

By Martha Carswell Pennington, Vance Stevens

ISBN-10: 185359119X

ISBN-13: 9781853591198

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Sources for extensive corpora of such text are discussed by Sampson (this volume, Chapter 9). Long the domain of linguists and literature specialists, concordances are only recently finding their way into the second language classroom. Stevens (1989b) describes how concordance output can be directed toward creating relevant and authentic vocabulary exercises, including hands-on exercises whose purpose is to encourage ESL learners to gain insights into salient features of the target language by running their own concordances on samples of authentic discourse.

Humanist approaches to learning are articulated in the psychology of Carl Rogers. Rogers (1961: 35) postulates an: urge which is evident in all organic and human life to expand, extend, become autonomous, develop, mature the tendency to express and activate all the capacities of the organism, to the extent that such activation enhances the organism or the self ... it is my belief that it exists in every individual, and awaits only the proper conditions to be released and expressed. Hence the humanistic educator's interest in environments conducive to learning which favour this quest for self-actualisation.

He makes use of the computer's ability to store large amounts of linguistic data for near-instantaneous random access and to order this data in various ways. Esling's students can not only access in seconds a database of sounds that would be virtually impossible to amass themselves, but they can also manipulate and organise this data, hear it on demand, and see it in various graphic representations. What makes Esling's implementations compelling is that the computer is being used as Lian would envisage: as a way of getting students to make inductive leaps toward mastering the material at hand.

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Computers in applied linguistics: an international perspective by Martha Carswell Pennington, Vance Stevens


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