Awareness of and attitudes toward variation in L2: Origins, prevalence and implications for second/foreign language teaching

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/289947
Title:
Awareness of and attitudes toward variation in L2: Origins, prevalence and implications for second/foreign language teaching
Author:
Kunschak, Claudia
Issue Date:
2003
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
The present study investigated awareness of and attitudes toward language variation among college level learners of German as a foreign language. The first part, language samples of varieties of English and German, was presented to students with Likert-type/Osgood semantic differential response sheets to explore patterns of reactions indicative of students' attitudes. The second part, a questionnaire including demographic items, items on German language background, and special items on language variation in English and German, was designed to examine possible connections between awareness and attitude in English, in German, and across languages, as well as any potentially related demographic or linguistic background factors. The third part, interviews of volunteers, was included to provide qualitative insights into the web of life experiences, linguistic background, and awareness of and attitudes toward language variation. The underlying purpose of the study was the establishment of baseline data on awareness of and attitude toward language variation among college students with a view to incorporating these findings into language planning, teacher training, material development, and classroom practice. Variation awareness was found to be well-developed among students, especially in L1 where up to 90% declared having experienced variation as opposed to 70% for L2, German. Attitudes toward variation were quite positive in L1 and slightly negative in L2. Awareness and attitudes were found to correlate strongly both within the languages and across languages. Overall, students found it important to learn about variation in L1 and L2 (4 out of 5 on a scale from 1-5). According to interviewees, language variation has a strong cultural component and awareness thereof has the potential to enhance communication. Based on these findings, the following recommendations can be formulated. Students' rich linguistic background and sometimes dormant metalinguistic capacities should be taken advantage of. Curricula, materials, and teacher training modules reflecting a concern for language variation should be developed. Finally, collaboration between L1 and L2 instructors and/or programs could contribute to disentangling the web of variation awareness and attitudes, cognition and affect, acceptability, appropriacy and critical language use.
Type:
text; Dissertation-Reproduction (electronic)
Keywords:
Education, Language and Literature.; Language, Linguistics.; Language, Modern.
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; Language, Reading and Culture
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Griego Jones, Toni

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.titleAwareness of and attitudes toward variation in L2: Origins, prevalence and implications for second/foreign language teachingen_US
dc.creatorKunschak, Claudiaen_US
dc.contributor.authorKunschak, Claudiaen_US
dc.date.issued2003en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThe present study investigated awareness of and attitudes toward language variation among college level learners of German as a foreign language. The first part, language samples of varieties of English and German, was presented to students with Likert-type/Osgood semantic differential response sheets to explore patterns of reactions indicative of students' attitudes. The second part, a questionnaire including demographic items, items on German language background, and special items on language variation in English and German, was designed to examine possible connections between awareness and attitude in English, in German, and across languages, as well as any potentially related demographic or linguistic background factors. The third part, interviews of volunteers, was included to provide qualitative insights into the web of life experiences, linguistic background, and awareness of and attitudes toward language variation. The underlying purpose of the study was the establishment of baseline data on awareness of and attitude toward language variation among college students with a view to incorporating these findings into language planning, teacher training, material development, and classroom practice. Variation awareness was found to be well-developed among students, especially in L1 where up to 90% declared having experienced variation as opposed to 70% for L2, German. Attitudes toward variation were quite positive in L1 and slightly negative in L2. Awareness and attitudes were found to correlate strongly both within the languages and across languages. Overall, students found it important to learn about variation in L1 and L2 (4 out of 5 on a scale from 1-5). According to interviewees, language variation has a strong cultural component and awareness thereof has the potential to enhance communication. Based on these findings, the following recommendations can be formulated. Students' rich linguistic background and sometimes dormant metalinguistic capacities should be taken advantage of. Curricula, materials, and teacher training modules reflecting a concern for language variation should be developed. Finally, collaboration between L1 and L2 instructors and/or programs could contribute to disentangling the web of variation awareness and attitudes, cognition and affect, acceptability, appropriacy and critical language use.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeDissertation-Reproduction (electronic)en_US
dc.subjectEducation, Language and Literature.en_US
dc.subjectLanguage, Linguistics.en_US
dc.subjectLanguage, Modern.en_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineLanguage, Reading and Cultureen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorGriego Jones, Tonien_US
dc.identifier.proquest3107011en_US
dc.identifier.bibrecord.b44663201en_US
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