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APPL725 – Advanced Topics in Second Language Acquisition

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor
Peter Roger
Contact via peter.roger@mq.edu.au
Credit points Credit points
4
Prerequisites Prerequisites
Admission to MRes
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit explores a variety of approaches to the study of second and foreign language acquisition in both instructed and naturalistic settings. The unit focuses on the range of factors that influence the learning/acquisition of a second language, as well as ways of studying the characteristics of learner language. Throughout the unit, participants are encouraged to reflect on the relevance of second language acquisition research to their own experiences as both language learners and professionals working in educational contexts or other language-related areas.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  2. Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  3. Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  5. Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Key Concepts 15% 30-31 March 2017
Critical Reviews 35% 1 May 2017
Major Essay 50% 15 June 2017

Key Concepts

Due: 30-31 March 2017
Weighting: 15%

This quiz will consist of fifteen multiple choice questions that test some of the key concepts covered in APPL725 Week 1 to Week 4.  The quiz will be available through the APPL725 iLearn site and will be open for a 48 hour period.  You can complete the quiz at a time of your choosing during this period, but it must be completed at a single sitting.  Once you begin, you will have one hour to complete the whole quiz.  You are free to use any study materials (books, articles, study notes, lecture slides, etc) while you complete the quiz, but because of the time limit it would be a good idea to ensure that you have worked through the material covered in Weeks 1-4 before you attempt the quiz.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language

Critical Reviews

Due: 1 May 2017
Weighting: 35%

 

This assignment involves writing critical reviews of two articles on different areas of second language acquisition covered in the first half of the unit, as described below. It is important to choose articles relevant to your professional and/or personal interests.

The goal of this assignment is that you demonstrate your understanding of the concepts and research findings relating to topics covered in the first half of APPL725 by providing a critical evaluation of the articles that you choose.  It is also important to relate the concepts discussed to your own context.

Before embarking on the assignment, you will probably find it useful to read the sections of Ellis (2008) that pertain to the topics of the articles you have chosen. You will also be expected to consult and utilise additional references relevant to the topic from other original sources. Note that many recent relevant journal articles will be easily accessible to you electronically and free of charge through the Macquarie University library website.

Detailed assignment instructions and guidelines will be provided.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Major Essay

Due: 15 June 2017
Weighting: 50%

This assignment is an essay on one of the topics covered in APPL725. It is a good idea to choose a topic relevant to your professional and personal interests. The assignment is designed to enable you to gain skills in gathering and organising information and at the same time to familiarise yourself with the relevant range of resources. For the essay you should first read carefully the section of Ellis (2008) that pertains to the topic you have chosen. You will also be expected to consult and utilise additional recent references relevant to the topic from the reading lists supplied during classes, or located by searching the library databases. You will need to use at least SIX original sources in addition to Ellis (2008) to support your arguments.

For this assignment, you can choose ONE of the essay topics that will be provided early in the semester. 

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Delivery and Resources

DELIVERY AND RESOURCES

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Internal students: The unit will be delivered through a weekly lecture-workshop on Thursday mornings from 9 AM - 11 AM.  It is co-taught with APPL925. Supplementary resources will be available on the iLearn site for the unit, and participation in the online discussions will also take place through the iLearn site.  Internal students can also access the podcast mini-lectures that will be posted on iLearn to accompany some of the weekly topics.

External students: The course materials online allow for guided reading of the set textbook and supplementary articles/chapters. There are also podcast mini-lectures for many of the modules covered in this unit.  You can do the reading and reflection activities individually, and then interact with the convenor and other members of the group via the discussion board. If you wish to do so, you can listen to the recorded lectures which as part of the internal offering of APPL725.

Unit Schedule

The unit is divided into thirteen sections. These match the thirteen teaching weeks that comprise the semester.  During the mid-semester break, you can consolidate your knowledge of the material covered in the first half of the semester, and work on your critical review assignment.  The unit schedule is provided in the section below.

Required and Recommended Texts and Materials

Prescribed text Ellis, R. (2008). The Study of Second Language Acquisition(2nd edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press.  

Unit readings: A selection of journal articles and book chapters is available through the Macquarie University Library e-reserve (Unit Readings).  Go to http://www.mq.edu.au/on_campus/library and under Multisearch, look for 'Unit Readings'.  Type "APPL925" to access the unit readings online.

Unit Webpage

The APPL725 iLearn site has a range of resources, including course notes, tasks, and online discussions. To log in to the website, go to the URL below. Students have access to the website from the first day of the semester until the end of the examination period.

The URL is https://ilearn.mq.edu.au

Online Resources

As a postgraduate student, it is essential that you become skilled in accessing electronic resources.  There is a range of other resources available to Macquarie students, including free electronic access to a wide variety of journal articles.  These can be accessed via http://www.mq.edu.au/on_campus/library/  If you need additional assistance with library research, you can contact one of the Research Librarians for Linguistics (look under Faculty of Human Sciences on this site):

http://www.mq.edu.au/pubstatic/on_campus/library/research/research_librarians/ 

Unit Schedule

The topics covered each week in APPL725 are reflected in the lecture schedule below.  If you are enrolled as an external student, you are welcome to attend any of these lectures if you are in Sydney are able to do so.  If you are based outside Sydney, the sessions will be recorded so that you can listen in if you wish to do so.  A more complete version of the lecture schedule, with recommended pre-reading and post-reading for each topic, will be provided in the first lecture and posted on the iLearn site.

Week

Topic

Lecturer

1

Approaches to studying second language acquisition: An overview

Peter Roger

2

The role of age in SLA 

Peter Roger

 

3

The role of the first language in SLA

Peter Roger

4

Learner language, errors and error analysis

Peter Roger

5

Developmental patterns in learner language

Peter Roger

6

Motivation        

Peter Roger

7

Learning styles

Peter Roger

 

Mid-semester Break

 

8

Language learning strategies

Peter Roger

9

Acquisition of the lexicon

Jill Murray

10

Acquisition of second language pragmatics

Jill Murray

11

Formal instruction and second language acquisition

Peter Roger

12

Language aptitude and anxiety

Peter Roger

13

Unit Summary: SLA goes to Hollywood

Peter Roger

 

 

Learning and Teaching Activities

On-campus lectures

These lecture-workshops are designed for students studying the unit on-campus. They are recorded, however, so if you are an external unit you may find it useful to listen to these sessions. The recordings are accessible through the ECHO recording tab on the iLearn site.

Podcast mini-lectures

Throughout the semester, students will view a series of mini-lectures introducing the key concepts covered in this unit.

Reading and reflection activities

Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.

Online discussions

Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.

Online Quizzes

Online quizzes allow students to check their own mastery of concepts covered throughout the unit.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html The Disruption to Studies Policy is effective from March 3 2014 and replaces the Special Consideration Policy.

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Academic integrity means you submit only your own work, and make it easy for the reader to work out which parts of your assignment are original and which parts come from named sources.

Collusion needs to be avoided

We value students collaborating together as part of their learning experience. Often students form informal study groups, where they share understanding of unit content, and approaches to the assessments. However, it is important to realize that unless you are doing Group Work for an assignment, all of the work you submit for individual assessment should be completely your own independent work.  Students are encouraged to form study groups, but this must not involve collusion to present group work as the work of the individual.

How is an informal or formal study group different from engaging in Group Work?

Working in study groups is different from engaging in assessed Group Work. Working in Groups involves a group of students combining their efforts in different ways to produce an evaluated piece of work.

Please see the Macquarie university information on Group Work available at http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=5&ved=0CEIQFjAE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.students.mq.edu.au%2Fpublic%2Fdownload.jsp%3Fid%3D55221&ei=plG_U7jIDovHkAWisoDYAg&usg=AFQjCNHNASv9JxEF9vY-q4TcsSuCO2qVog&bvm=bv.70810081,d.dGI

 

What is collusion?

This is the unauthorised presentation of group work as your own.  It may involve

  • Working with someone to provide one piece of work
  • Allowing others to share your assignment answer or copy your work
  • Using the assignment answer or work of another student (past or present) with or without their permission. It is collusion even if only small parts of the assignment are used
  • Allowing others to edit and write your work
  • Editing or writing the work of another student
  • Offering to do work for another student or seeking payment for preparing academic work for someone else

 

How can you avoid collusion?

  • Do not share your findings or answers to an assignment
  • Do not use another student’s case studies, findings or ideas about an assignment
  • Do not ask another student for a copy of their assignment
  • Do not share your current or past assignments with another student (whether to “look at the structure” or any other reason).

 

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

PG - Capable of Professional and Personal Judgment and Initiative

Our postgraduates will demonstrate a high standard of discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgment. They will have the ability to make informed choices and decisions that reflect both the nature of their professional work and their personal perspectives.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment tasks

  • Key Concepts
  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.
  • Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.

PG - Discipline Knowledge and Skills

Our postgraduates will be able to demonstrate a significantly enhanced depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content knowledge in their chosen fields.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language

Assessment tasks

  • Key Concepts
  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • These lecture-workshops are designed for students studying the unit on-campus. They are recorded, however, so if you are an external unit you may find it useful to listen to these sessions. The recordings are accessible through the ECHO recording tab on the iLearn site.
  • Throughout the semester, students will view a series of mini-lectures introducing the key concepts covered in this unit.
  • Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.
  • Online quizzes allow students to check their own mastery of concepts covered throughout the unit.

PG - Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

Our postgraduates will be capable of utilising and reflecting on prior knowledge and experience, of applying higher level critical thinking skills, and of integrating and synthesising learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments. A characteristic of this form of thinking is the generation of new, professionally oriented knowledge through personal or group-based critique of practice and theory.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment tasks

  • Key Concepts
  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • These lecture-workshops are designed for students studying the unit on-campus. They are recorded, however, so if you are an external unit you may find it useful to listen to these sessions. The recordings are accessible through the ECHO recording tab on the iLearn site.
  • Throughout the semester, students will view a series of mini-lectures introducing the key concepts covered in this unit.
  • Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.
  • Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.
  • Online quizzes allow students to check their own mastery of concepts covered throughout the unit.

PG - Research and Problem Solving Capability

Our postgraduates will be capable of systematic enquiry; able to use research skills to create new knowledge that can be applied to real world issues, or contribute to a field of study or practice to enhance society. They will be capable of creative questioning, problem finding and problem solving.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate in-depth familiarity with three major areas of SLA research
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment tasks

  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • These lecture-workshops are designed for students studying the unit on-campus. They are recorded, however, so if you are an external unit you may find it useful to listen to these sessions. The recordings are accessible through the ECHO recording tab on the iLearn site.
  • Throughout the semester, students will view a series of mini-lectures introducing the key concepts covered in this unit.
  • Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.
  • Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.

PG - Effective Communication

Our postgraduates will be able to communicate effectively and convey their views to different social, cultural, and professional audiences. They will be able to use a variety of technologically supported media to communicate with empathy using a range of written, spoken or visual formats.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Discuss a range of theories and approaches in the study of SLA
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment tasks

  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.

PG - Engaged and Responsible, Active and Ethical Citizens

Our postgraduates will be ethically aware and capable of confident transformative action in relation to their professional responsibilities and the wider community. They will have a sense of connectedness with others and country and have a sense of mutual obligation. They will be able to appreciate the impact of their professional roles for social justice and inclusion related to national and global issues

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Describe a range of current issues and research trends in SLA
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of internal and external factors that influence an individual’s learning of a second language
  • Articulate an individual application of SLA research.

Assessment tasks

  • Critical Reviews
  • Major Essay

Learning and teaching activities

  • These lecture-workshops are designed for students studying the unit on-campus. They are recorded, however, so if you are an external unit you may find it useful to listen to these sessions. The recordings are accessible through the ECHO recording tab on the iLearn site.
  • Each module involves some set reading, followed by reflection activities. Suggestions for further reading are also provided.
  • Throughout the semester, students participate in online discussions of topics relating to the different modules of the unit. This allows us to share ideas with those living and working in many parts of the world.