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  • 1. FELTE QUARTERLY Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 Faculty of English Language Teacher Education University of Languages and International Studies, VNU For internal circulation only
  • 2. Felte Quarterly Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 Faculty of English Language Teacher Education University of Languages and International Studies, VNU For internal circulation only Editors Mr. Ngô Xuân Minh (Division II) Ms. Trần Hoài Giang (Division II) Ms. Hoàng Hồng Trang (Division III) Layout Editor Ms. Trần Hoài Giang (Division II) Editorial Advisory Board Ms. Nguyễn Thu Lệ Hằng, FELTE Dean Ms. Vũ Mai Trang, FELTE Vice- Dean Mr. Khoa Anh Việt, FELTE Vide- DeanVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011
  • 3. Table of Contents Editors’ Notes.................................................................................................................................... 4 FELTE Rhythm ELT Research Methodology Course.............................................................. 5 FELTE Union of Young Lecturers’ Year-end Forum...................................... 5 CLC Curriculum Review and Book Donation................................................. 7 NETEC Articulation Project ........................................................................... 8 Khoa Anh Viet (FELTE Vice Dean) Do you know? ................................................................................................ 8 FELTE Faces Ms. Vu Phuong Thao, Winner of Both ALA and Endeavour Awards............. 9 Feature Article Backchannels in the English-as-a-Second-Language Mix-sexed ................ 12 Conversations: A Discussion of Frequency, Gender Typical Expression, and Level of Interest Nguyen Chi Duc (ELT Division) Review Turnbull, M., & Dailey-O’Cain, J. (Eds.). (2009). First language use in ........ 17 second and foreign language learning. Bristol, England: Multilingual Matters. ISBN-13: 978-1-84769-195-8. 207 pp. Le Van Canh (Head of Office of International Relations) Teaching in Focus Activities that work…...................................................................................... 20 Do Thi Xuan Hoa (Division I) Fun Corner FELTE Word Search...................................................................................... 11 Double Puzzle................................................................................................ 16 Tran Hoai Giang (Division II) Call for Contribution ................................................................................... 21Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011
  • 4. Editors’ Notes In line with ULIS’s ambition of becoming a research-intensive higher education institution, Faculty of English Language Teacher Education (FELTE) has fostered an array of professional development and research activities among all the faculty members. Nevertheless, there has so far been no authoritative hub for FELTE lecturers to share with and learn from each other. Aware of this gap, the FELTE Managerial Board has initiated and sponsored the establishment of FELTE Quarterly, which we proudly present today. In its first issue, the journal provides a snapshot of some of the faculty’s most prominent activities during the past few months in FELTE Rhythm, followed by an interview with an ALA – ENDEAVOUR awardee – a striking representative of a rising young generation in FELTE. Subsequently, F.Q., in its attempt to stimulate research interest among its readership, introduces an intriguing research report by a young researcher - a young ELT lecturer, and a quality book review by a senior staff member of ULIS who, despite his key administrative position, remains highly committed to research and professional development. The issue ends with Teaching in Focus, a column devoted to practical teaching ideas that will come into handy for quite a few ELT practitioners. Last but not least, enthusiastic readers and potential contributors are highly recommended to look through the Call for Papers to keep themselves better informed of ways to join the vibrant community of F.Q. writers and editors. Finally, in this inaugural issue, the Editorial Board would like to extend their deepest thanks to the FELTE Managerial Board for the invaluable guidance, all FELTE staff members for their encouragement and assistance, and especially to all the authors of the articles in this first issue, without whom the idea of a faculty journal of, for and by FELTE teachers’ would not be realized. F.Q. Editorial BoardVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 4
  • 5. FELTE Rhythm ELT Research Methodology Course Ngo Xuan Minh Besides the day-to-day teaching job, FELTE the top FELTE research methodologists. Despite lecturers are required to conduct research for the challenging subject matters, the class has professional development and for fulfillment of unfailingly been immersed in an enthusiastic ULIS mission as a research-intensive higher atmosphere thanks to the constant interactions education institution. Yet, research has always between the inspiring and devoted instructor and been a ‘hard nut to crack’ especially for young the highly motivated students – young lecturers lecturers who possess limited teaching from all the three English language teaching and experience and insufficient knowledge of research faculties. research methodology. Aware of this issue, the The course has exemplified an alternative FELTE Union of Young Lecturers have decided to and yet no less effective model for staff organize a course in ELT Research Methodology professional development besides the INSET for Early-career teachers in April and May, 2011. training sessions. Ensuing the course, the FELTE The class meets every Monday in April and Union of Young Lecturers are committed to May to discuss fundamental issues in ELT launching other courses in education philosophy, research such as the nature of research, research critical thinking and new approaches in language design and common research methods under the teaching as part of its relentless attempt to assist guidance of Ms. Phung Ha Thanh (M.Ed), one of its members’ professional fulfillment. FELTE Union of Young Lecturers’ Year-end Forum Ngo Xuan Minh Approximate calculations reveal that FELTE Faculty Managerial Board (FMB), Faculty VCP is demographically a young faculty with around branch, and Faculty Trade Union. 60% of the staff members aged 30 or less. Hence, Held on April 21st in Hall 6 – B2, the its robustness is heavily dependent on the young meeting started with a brief report of the FUYL’s generation which often receives generous praises accomplishments and shortcomings during the from senior staff members. Nevertheless, there past academic year by the FUYL secretary – Mr. have recently emerged some complaints about Ngo Xuan Minh. Following the report was a young lecturers’ working conduct and vibrant discussion in which FUYL members – also commitment, which, if not addressed, may taint FELTE young lecturers raised a lot of original the long-established faculty reputation. opinions about how to boost the union’s political, The serious nature of this issue has cultural and academic activities for its members’ prompted the FELTE Union of Young Lecturers personal and professional betterment. For (FUYL) to convene a forum where junior staff example, Mr. Nguyen Thanh Van with his members have the chance to voice their opinions extensive experience in cultural activities of the and listen to the expectations and policies of the Faculty and the University listed some challengesVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 5
  • 6. FELTE Rhythm as well as benefits and urged that teachers Trade Union, asserted the need for the junior engaged in extracurricular jobs should be staff to raise their self-discipline and responsible supported by the Faculty in a variety of ways, say for faculty assignments. Ensuing this line, Mr. the exemption from supervising exams and the Khoa Anh Viet, FELTE Vice-Dean, pledged greater reduction in the number of teaching periods. Mr. fairness in staff appraisal and assignment and Nguyen Tuan Anh, Deputy Head of Division 1, urged the FYUL to establish and promote its own suggested establishing a material sharing brand name with high-quality academic products network and expressed his willingness to share a and activities like the upcoming FELTE database of around 4,000 articles collected QUARTERLY. Nevertheless, consistent in all the during his overseas studies. Ms. Nguyen Thu Ha three speeches was the optimism that FELTE (CLC) proposed the whole-day INSET model young lecturers, with their knowledge and skill, instead of the current two-hour INSET session. would not just follow but would ‘forward’ the tradition of the Faculty and consolidate its critical Taking these opinions into serious position in ULIS. consideration, representatives of Faculty CPV branch, Trade Union and Managerial Board The forum, though not intended as a ‘pep promised to discuss and adjust the policies in the talk’, has significantly boosted the morale of the foreseeable future. Yet, Ms. Dinh Hai Yen, sectary FELTE young generation, raising their of the Faculty CPV branch, reminded young commitment to give back to the faculty to which lecturers of their payback obligation and they are heavily indebted both academically and commitment to the Faculty. Echoing this view, personally. Ms. Phan Hoang Yen, President of the Faculty Professional development could be great fun!Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 6
  • 7. FELTE Rhythm CLC Curriculum Review and Book Donation (Monday 25.4.2011) Ngo Xuan Minh The fast-track teacher education program (better known as CLC SP) in FELTE plays a critical role in the curriculum system of FELTE in particular and ULIS in general since the majority of graduates from this program has and will become lecturers at FELTE, ULIS. However, there has hardly been any external assessment project on the program’s curricula. To address this gap, Dr. Diana Dudzik and her assistants have conducted a systematic investigation into the fast-track teacher education program with a view to recommending necessary CLC teachers and students who realized his vision changes as well as serving as the framework and of the program as well as to Dr. Dudzik for her basis for future assessment of syllabi in FELTE. assiduous research efforts. The witty and informal Attended by President Nguyen Hoa, Vice- speech set the scholarly but no less cordial president Do Tuan Minh, FELTE Managerial Board, atmosphere for the entire session. In two hours, Dr. Head and Group Leaders of English I, II, III and ELT, Diana Dudzik, the speaker, presented the the workshop has been one of the highest profile remarkable research findings of the project, and led events in FELTE this academic year. The session a brief, but fruitful follow-up discussion about the started with a book donation ceremony as an research process itself as well as specific changes attempt to deal with the lack of teaching and that should be adopted to better the program. The learning resources in FELTE, and a brief opening workshop has generated great interest into among speech by Professor Nguyen Hoa. In his speech, FELTE key staff, some of whom have intended to Prof. Hoa expressed his gratitude to all carry out similar program review projects in their own divisions.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 7
  • 8. FELTE News NETEC Articulation Project Khoa Anh Viet A FELTE task force was gathered to develop some of the courses in National English Teacher Education Curriculum (NETEC). The aims of this assignment are to develop staff capacity for course development, to collaboratively produce 6 course descriptions, develop syllabi, choose texts, design assignments, determine assessments etc., and to embed teacher education, proficiency, and technology skills and connect teaching to practice in doable ways throughout the 6 courses. No. Courses Teaching English for Content Areas 1 TEAM 1 Ngô Việt Hà Phương - Hoàng Hồng Hải Materials Development and Lesson Planning 2 TEAM 2 Trần Quỳnh Lê - Vũ Mai Trang Consulting group: Dr. Martha Curriculum and Syllabus Development Bigalow, Dr. Diana Dudzik, Dr. Nguyễn 3 TEAM 3 Vũ Tường Vi - Nguyễn Thị Thu Hà Hòa, Dr. Đỗ Tuấn Minh, and Ms. Nguyễn Thu Lệ Hằng. Language Learning Theories and Exploratory Practice 4 TEAM 4 Nguyễn Tuấn Anh - Khoa Anh Việt After two weeks of hard work, Psychology for Foreign Language Teaching: a Social the team achieved great success in 5 Constructive Approach course development and all the six TEAM 5 Lương Quỳnh Trang - Nguyễn Thị Thu Hiền courses are ready to be piloted in the Classroom English and Micro-teaching Practicum upcoming years. 6 TEAM 6 Phạm Thị Thanh Thủy - Trần Thị Lan Anh Do you know? FELTE, FLCE, FoE Outsiders, as a rule, are utterly confused on hearing that there are up to 3 English faculties in ULIS. So what are the differences between them? o FELTE (Faculty of English Language Teacher Education) is responsible for training TEFL and translation- interpretation majors in undergraduate and postgraduate studies as well as conducting researches and projects in the related areas. o FLCE (Faculty of Linguistics and Cultures of English speaking countries) is in charge of training Linguistics and Culture-related majors at all levels of studies in ULIS, VNU as well as conducting researches and projects in the related areas. o FoE (Faculty of English) assumes the task of teaching English to non-majors in all the member universities and faculties of Vietnam National University, Hanoi. Yet, there are constant interactions between the three faculties thanks to the flexible policy of ULIS and the commitment of all three faculties to conform with ULIS’s vision of excellence in teaching and research of languages and international studies.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 8
  • 9. FELTE Faces Ms. Vu Phuong Thao, winner of both ALA and Endeavour Awards The first issue of FELTE Quarterly is published right in the middle of what FELTE teachers normally jokingly name “Scholarship Season”. During this critical span, many teachers work twice harder to deal with the strenuous daily teaching jobs and at the same time pursue their life-long dream of overseas postgraduate studies. Among the scholarships most sought after by them are probably ALA (Australian Leadership Awards) and Endeavour Awards, both known for their prestige and competitiveness. Unfortunately, the number of ALAs and Endeavour Awards presented to Vietnamese candidates is quite limited (around 20 for each award). However, in 2010 a young teacher from FELTE, named Vu Thi Phuong Thao successfully gained the offers from the Selection Panels of both awards. Currently, she is doing her Master of Education at the University of Melbourne, Australia under ALA scheme. Taken by Duong Thu Mai “A cool head and a warm heart” As an attempt to assist ambitious FELTE teachers in their pursuit of overseas studies, FELTE editors have invited Thao to share her firsthand experience in applying for the scholarships as well as in studying and living in Australia. • Minh Ngo (MN): Hi, Ms. Thao. Thank you for requirement of the scholarship, and joining us in this first issue of FELTE demonstrate in his/her profile, reference Quarterly. letters, and the shortlist interview that “I’m ‘Ms. Or Mr. Right’ for this scholarship,” then • Thao Vu (TV): Hi. Thank you for this the chance would be very high. My opportunity. It’s great to stay connected with suggestion would be analyzing rigorously the our faculty this way. requirements described in the scholarship • MN: First, shall we talk about the Australian handbook and the checklist in the reference Leadership Awards? Besides the core letter form, collecting real-life evidence to requirements posted on the web, what do match yourself with the description, and you think are the qualities and skills that the articulating the evidence in the most potential candidates need to demonstrate? convincing and original manner. For ALA • TV: Well, I would say if a candidate can scholarship, leadership is an umbrella term. confidently put a tick next to every single An interested candidate may need to workVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 9
  • 10. FELTE Faces qualities accordingly? Do I possess them and more about leadership. Depending on how how to convince people that I do?” The whole each candidate designates their concept of ‘application package’ and answers in the leadership, the convergence between these interview need to consistently portray the two scholarships could be more or less. In candidate as the leader that he/she has addition, Endeavour and ALA scholarships already shaped in mind. also differ in their conditions and offers that you can find out from their handbook. • MN: So what’s your idea of leadership? • MN: Thank you. As you may know, most • TV: I would think of a change agent, who is applicants (FELTE teachers included) apply for devoted to bringing about changes and both ALA and Endeavour Awards in order to connecting other people to bring about boost their winning chances. Then how positive changes. should they adapt their ALA packages to • MN: As far as I know, shortlisted candidates enter for Endeavour Awards? will be invited to an interview. Could you • TV: I don’t remember making use much of please share with us some tips to impress the my ALA application for the Endeavour one selection panel? because the questions are not really similar. • TV: The strategies would vary, I have to say. I But again, it comes back to how close your compared my experience with other understanding of leadership is to the focus successful candidates and they turned out to on social contributions of Endeavour. For be quite different. The common advice, as example, if your reasoning is that leadership you may know already, is to stay relaxed, mainly involves creating changes that may confident, and connected with the listeners, progressively affect the community and to support the answers with evidence from society, I reckon some ideas could be your genuine experience, and to be as transferrable between the two applications. eloquent as possible. I’ve learnt that telling stories is an effective way to engage the panel. It’d be a good idea to anticipate a couple of interview questions and prepare “ The FELTE community in Melbourne and stories to illustrate the answers beforehand. my housemates are such a blessing to me For more tips, I would recommend the ALA and Fulbright scholarship discussion threads ” • MN: Now that you have attended University of in ttvnol.com. It’s a wonderful sharing Melbourne for almost nine months, what do community – definitely something we can’t you think are the main differences between miss out. studying in ULIS and in U.o.M? • MN: Another prestigious scholarship often • TV: Well, I’m particularly delighted at the applied for by those wishing to undertake student supporting services like orientation, graduate studies in Australia is Endeavour counselling, and tutoring services. They are Awards. So what are the differences between very helpful in easing my study and personal this scholarship scheme and ALA? life. Another advantage about U.o.M is the • TV: My personal idea would be…Endeavour library facilities and information systems, focuses more on social contributions, which really assist and help enhance self- regarding the candidate’s extra-curriculum, study and research capacity. social activities and professional activities • MN: Another equally important aspect is the that are meaningful to the society. ALA is life in Australia. Are there any shocks thatVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 10
  • 11. FELTE Faces FELTE teachers are likely to face when living • MN: So is there anything they should bring in Australia? along in order to better cope with life there? • TV: I’m afraid I can’t give you a lot first-hand • TV: A cool head and a warm heart. And I wish experience here coz’ I fortunately feel like you a stroke of luck as well. home when living in Melbourne. The FELTE • MN: Thank you for your enthusiastic and community in Melbourne and my housemates informative answers. I believe that FELTE are such a blessing to me. Their support and teachers will benefit immensely from them. company from the very first day I arrived here On behalf of FELTE Quarterly Editorial Board until now has made me forget that I could and FELTE staff, I wish you to complete your have suffered from culture shock, M.A. study with a high distinction grade. homesickness, or single-available-and- Hope to see you soon in Hanoi. lonely trauma. Other than this, I used to struggle for quite a while with using the • Ms. Thao: Thank you. My best wishes to public transport and getting around the city beloved colleagues and your application. I without getting lost. But believe me, direction look forward to seeing you soon and hearing is never my thing, and you may find it just a good news from you then. piece of cake. FELTE Word Search ☻ Tran Hoai Giang Can you find all the 9 hidden ELT-related words in this Word Search? Words can go in the following directions: ⇦⇧⇨⇩ Visit www.Busyteacher.org to create your own Word Search and much more! SOLUTIONSVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 11
  • 12. Feature Article Backchannels in the English-as-a-Second-Language Mix-sexed Conversations: A Discussion of Frequency, Gender Typical Expression, and Level of Interest Nguyen Chi Duc 1. Introduction According to Zimmerman and West (1975), Fishman (1983), Coates (1989), and Jenkins & Cheshire (1990), women tended to be more active than men in supportive roles in conversations. They showed their conversation support by signaling that the speaker’s messages had been received, understood, agreed to and/or brought out a certain effect (Orestrom, 1983). This phenomenon was originally addressed as backchannels by Yngve (1970). However, whether this pattern is also true for other target population and in other communication settings is still subject to test. Additionally, little body of research explicitly seeks to learn typical expressions and level of interest that men and women employ in their own conversations. This research gap inspires me to conduct a small study on English Backchannel in mix-sexed conversations in the academic context of a university in Vietnam, in which English as a second language is the medium of instruction. 2. Aims, Research Questions and Scopes of Study The paper purports to address the following research questions: (1) is there any difference in frequency of backchannel items in mix-sexed conversations? If yes, which gender use more backchannel responses?; (2) is there any difference in their backchannel expressions? If yes, which expressions are typical for each sex?; and (3) is there any difference in level of interest between the two genders? If yes, which sex uses higher level?. The findings would provide a modest contribution to linguistic analysis work based on gender and application to better real-life communications. Due to the limitation of time, the paper excludes such other influential factors as: age, ethnic groups, religion, class, sexual orientation, and regional and cultural background. The number of samples is also limited within the capacity of the researcher’s analysis. 3. Core Concept: Backchannel In Linguistics, backchannels are defined as listener responses that can be either verbal or non- verbal in nature. Backchannel responses used to refer to the short utterances (e.g., uh, huh, okay, Yeah, I see) that would occur in the backchannel by the non-primary speaker or the listener as the front channel is occupied by the primary speaker (Yngve, 1970). Later, scholars extended the scope of backchannel responses to include sentence completions, requests for clarification, brief statements, and non-verbal responses (Duncan & Niederehe, 1974; Duncan & Fiske, 1977). To recognize backchannel responses, two criteria must be fulfilled: (a) they do not seriously interrupt the primary speaker’s speakership, and (b) they do not intend to take over the floor of the current speaker (Clancy, Thompson, Suzuki & Tao, 1996). The two major functions of backchannel responses are ‘‘continuers’’ and ‘‘assessments’’ (Goodwin, 1986; Schegloff, 1982). That is to say, they are indications to the current speaker that the listener is paying attention to and/or understands what is being said.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 12
  • 13. Feature Article 4. Method and Data: Participants Ten participants (five males and five females) volunteered to participate in the study without any incentives offered. They formed five dyads of mix-sexed conversation. However, one dyad was dropped from the data analysis since they both did not follow the instruction and were highly aware of recording. The majority of participants were in their twenties or early thirties with an average of 29.1. The mean ages for the males and females were 30.0 and 28.2, respectively. These means were not statistically significant: t (1,78) = -1.90, P > 0.05. All the participants were recruited from English Department of University of Languages and International Studies (ULIS). Prior to this recruitment, the ethics approval was obtained from the University’s Ethics Review Board. Since all the participants were the instructors and students of English in ULIS, their English proficiency was highly ensured. Additionally, they all had an IELTS score of band 5.5 or over at the time of recording. Experimental Design and Procedure A daily-topic-conversation design was applied under two conditions: over-the-phone and face- to-face conversations. All the participants were well informed about the recording and the purpose of data collection. An open atmosphere was created by a well-trained facilitator, which was supposed to mitigate the psychological confront by high awareness of recording. The bulk of recorded data proved to be of natural contribution except for the first two minutes since the participants were still well conscious about the tape-recorder. Therefore, all the data retrieved from the first-two-minute block was dropped from the data analysis. The targeted conversations were then transcribed and coded properly. In the first stage, all the backchannel items were counted and compared between dyads and the two sexes. Next, typical backchannel expressions in each sex were documented and then compared between the two genders. At the final stage, a discourse analysis (function-focused) was conducted to learn the level of supportiveness in these expressions. 5. Result: Discussion of Findings Discussion of frequency of backchannel items between two sexes 16 14 12 10 8 Male 6 Fem ale 4 2 0 C1 C2 C3 C4 Figure 1: Frequency of backchannel items It can be seen from Figure 1 that males prove to use more backchannel items than females, only except for the conversation 4. In addition, the ratio is rather high: 15 times in the conversation 2, over 3 times in the conversation 1, and nearly 2 times in the conversation 3. Meanwhile, the conversation 4 presents only two times of female’s employment of backchannel items over that of the male. This resultVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 13
  • 14. Feature Article is obviously contradictory to the hypothesis generated from the previous research. It should be well noted that in the three conversations 1-3, the female speakers are the primary source of information giving. Therefore, the males are just information token. They accordingly have no or little chance to take the floor. However, in the conversation 4 where the male speaker is the main information deliverer and the female is rather a passive receiver, then the reverse patterns. The number of backchannel items that the female employs actually doubles that by the male. Apparently, the frequency of backchannel use, in this study, depends heavily on the role of the participants. A common pattern can be roughly established that who is the primary source of information tends to employ less backchannel items and vise versa. Discussion of typical features in backchannel use between the two sexes Backchannel Males % Females % /oh/ 9 12% 1 1.2% /oh?/ 4 5% 0 0% /um, umhm, mmhm/ 4 5% 2 2.4% /uh, uhuh, huh, ahah/ 5 6% 5 6% /yeh, yeah, yah/ 6 7.5% 4 5% /yep?/ 0 0% 1 1.2% /yes/ 4 5% 1 1.2% /ah/ 2 2.5% 0 0% /ok/ 4 5% 1 1.2% /so/ 0 0% 2 2.4% /right, that’s right/ 0 0% 2 2.4% Sentence with /good, great, nice, well, 7 9% 1 1.2% interesting, beautiful, helpful/ Others 7 9% 7 9% /laugh/ 1 1.2% 0 0% Total 53 >=67% 26 =<33% Figure 2: Typical features in backchannel use between the two sexesVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 14
  • 15. Feature Article As shown in Figure 2, the majority of the backchannel items that the females use is rather short (either a single word or two). Meanwhile, the responses from the males’ utterances seem to be longer. This feature is also different from that of the previous research, which contends that the females’ sentences tend to be longer that the males’ (Fishman (1983), Coates (1989), and Jenkins & Cheshire (1990)). The males in this study employ quite many sentences with positive words such as: “good, great, nice, well, beautiful and helpful” in comparison with only one utterance from the female in the conversation 3. This reveals that the males highly appreciate the information that the females send out. It is well noticing that a laugh was recorded in the male’s utterance in the conversation 1, whereas none was found in the females’. Since a laugh can, according to Steiner (2005), show a spontaneous and strongly emotional response, it can be a good indicator of supportiveness in conversation. Therefore, the males seem to support the wheel of conversation better than the females. Discussion of level of interest between the two sexes To learn the level of interest between the two sexes, a “level-of-interest” scale should be well- defined as the following groups: o the single form (oh, uhuh, yeah, mh, ah, so, ok, yes) (single words) o the complex form (yeah yeah, oh ok) (two words or more) o the questions (yep?, oh? Really?, about half an hour?) o the restatement o the appreciative full sentences o the laughter 35 30 25 20 Males 15 Females 10 5 0 res co qu ap lau sin mp pr es gle gh tat e t io lex em ci a n tiv nte e Figure 3: Level of Interest Low Interest High Interest The order above indicates the increasing level of interest. At most of the levels of interest, the males prove to have a higher involvement than the females except for the restatement. It should be noted that the restatement is regularly used by the female in the conversation 4 since she is currently noting the information that the male delivers. So her restatementVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 15
  • 16. Feature Article purports to confirm the messages that she has taken from him. Additionally, the males tend to use more appreciative full-sentence response to show their interest than the females. However, this pattern is designated by the particular setting in which the females are informants and the males themselves are information tokens. 6. Conclusion From the discussion above, (1) the males prove to be more supportive in mix-sexed conversations than the females. This is contradictory to the hypothesis stated in the introduction. This pattern clearly depends on the roles of the participants in the conversations rather than their genders. Those who primarily give information tends to deliver less backchannel items than the other and vice versa. (2) The males’ responses are longer, more varied, and embedded with more feelings and functions than those of the females. (3) At the bulk of levels, the males present their higher interest in the message transfers. However, due to the limitation of the target population and the settings of conversations, these findings and interpretations should not be over-generalized. This is just a study to prove the hypothesis aforementioned should not be widely administrated. For further research, the paper suggests a more in- depth investigation of the effects of participants’ roles over their use of backchannel items. References Coates, J.(1989). Gossip revisited: language in all-female groups. In Coates, J. and Cameron, D. (eds.) Women in their speech communications, London: Longman. Fishman, Pamela (1983), Interaction: the work women do, in Thorne, B., Kramerae, C. and Henley, N. (eds.), Language and sex: Difference and dominance, Rowley, MA: Newbury House. Hoang, Thi Hanh (2006), Appreciating Utterances in Conversation: A Cross-culture Analysis, PhD Thesis. Faculty of Art, Melbourne University Jenkins, Nancy and Cheshire, Jenny (1990), Gender issues in the GCSE oral English examination: part 1’, Language and education, 4: 261-92. Nguyen, Thi Mai Hoa (2005), Pragmatic Analysis of Appreciating Responses in daily conversations: A comparison between Vietnamese and Australian Culture, PhD Thesis, Faculty of Art, Melbourne University. Thomas, Linda, et al. (2004), Language, Society and Power, London: Routledge. Zimmerman, Dan and West, Candace (1975), Sexroles, interruptions and silences in conversation, inThorne, B. , Kramerae, C., and Henley, N. (eds.), Language and sex: Difference and dominance, Rowley, MA: Newbury House. Double Puzzle ☻ Tran Hoai Giang (Created with Busyteacher.org Double Puzzle Creator) Unscramble each of the clue words related to FELTE. Then take all the letters that appear in the circles and unscramble them for the hidden message. See solutions after the Review.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 16
  • 17. Review Turnbull, M., & Dailey-O’Cain, J. (Eds.). (2009). First language use in second and foreign language learning. Bristol, England: Multilingual Matters. ISBN-13: 978-1-84769-195-8. 207 pp. Review by Le Van Canh University of Languages & International Studies The use of first language in teaching and learning second and foreign languages has fuelled a great debate among applied linguists and language educators over the last few years. According to Macaro (2005), perspectives on target language use and first language use are along the same continuum. At one end of the continuum lies the position which views first language use as having no pedagogical or communicative value. Proponents of this position (e.g., Ellis, 1986; Krashen, 1982; Swain, 1985) draw on Krashen’s (1982) comprehensible input hypothesis and Swain’s (1985) pushed output hypothesis, which argue for the need to expose learners to a flood of comprehensible target-language input as well as to provide them with ample opportunities to produce the target language to ensure mastery of the target language. All of these authors support the view that second language learning is a monolingual process. At the other extreme of the continuum are perspectives which argue that the first language can be beneficial as a cognitive tool that aids in second language learning (e.g. Swain & Lapkin, 2000; Watanabe, 2008). Classroom-based research also shows that teachers, to varying degrees, do use the first language even in contexts that are based on principles of communicative language teaching (e.g., Polio & Duff, 1994; Turnbull, 2005), and students tend to opt for their first language even when monitored (Behan et al., 1997). In the context of the on-going debate over the issue and in the absence of solid empirical evidence of a causal relationship between exclusion of the first language and improved second/foreign language learning, the book First Language Use in Second and Foreign Language Learning comes out just in time. The book is welcomingly added by Guy Cook’s (2010) recent volume Translation in Language Teaching . The book is a collection of nine empirical studies related to first language use in a variety of second and foreign language contexts (French immersion in Canada; English as a foreign language in China; the multimedia learning context of French as a foreign language and English as a foreign and second language in England; Primary school English as a foreign language in Hungary; Spanish- English dual immersion in the United States, German as a foreign language in Canada and the United States; and French as a foreign language in the United States). In Chapter 10, the concluding chapter, the editors reflect on all the studies reported in the book and point out that the studies raise more questions than answers. Then, they make recommendations for policy, practice and teacher development as well as avenues for future research. It is worth quoting the editors’ remarks in full because if the enormous implications it has for language teaching and language learning research: Optimal first language use in communicative and immersion second and foreign language classrooms recognizes the benefits of the learner’s first language as a cognitive and meta-Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 17
  • 18. Review cognitive tool, as a strategic organizer and as a scaffold for language development. In addition, the first language helps learners navigate a bilingual identity and thereby learn to function as a bilingual. Neither the classroom teacher nor the second or foreign language learner becomes so dependent on the first language that neither can function without the first language. Optimal codeswitching practices will ultimately lead to enhanced language learning and the development of bilingual communicative practices (Turnbull & Dailey-O’Cain, p. 183). Regarding research methodology, all the studies presented in the book draw on multiple theoretical frameworks and use both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. However, what I find most useful in terms of methodology is the way authors use qualitative methods informed by principles of grounded theory and narrative inquiry to investigate the issue. I believe that the shift to the qualitative paradigm from the conventional psychometric paradigm, which has dominated mainstream Second Language Acquisition (SLA) research must be appreciated given the huge gap between laboratory conditions and the social reality of language classroom. Such a paradigmatical shift represents the recognition of teaching and learning as human individual activities, and therefore, as “a system of social relations” (Leontiev, 1981, p. 46) which are “experienced and created by teachers and learners” (Breen, 1985, p. 141) within a particular cultural-historic milieu. All in all, the book provides a wealth of information about the use of first language in the second and foreign language classroom, which is summarised by the editors as follows: Despite the persistence of policies that prohibit the use of the first language, both teachers and learners are in fact using the first language in cognitively and sociolinguistically productive ways, and in every kind of classroom imaginable. (p. 14) Such an observation is aligned with the call for more empirical inquiries into the influence of teachers’ mental lives on their practice (Borg, 2009; Burns, 2009) in an attempt to gain insights into why teachers tend to divorce their practice from mainstream SSLA theories. Another value of the book lies in the suggestions the authors make for future investigation into the issue of first language use in the second and foreign language classroom. Among the questions raised by the editors in the final chapter that need further inquiries, codeswitching is in the forefront. In my opinion, the book has two basic limitations. First, although the editors claim that the book covers a “variety of second and foreign language contexts” (p. 8), most of the studies were conducted in either European or North American contexts. The absence of studies in Asian contexts may lead the readers to the impression that the book is dominated by eurocentricity. The second limitation, which has been already acknowledged by the editors, is that it fails to provide practical tips for classroom teachers on the optimal use of first language in the second and foreign language classroom. Personally, I think this is an unfortunate omission if we agree that target-language exposure is necessary, but not sufficient to guarantee target language learning while overuse or overdependence on the first language may disempower both teachers and learners in the second and foreign language classroom. Despite these limitations, I strongly recommend this book; it deserves a good place on the shelf of second language teacher educators, curriculum developers and classroom language policy-makers.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 18
  • 19. Review References Behan, L., Turnbull, M., & Spek, J.(1997). The proficiency gap in late French immersion: Language use in collaborative tasks. Le Journal de l’Immersion, 29(2), 41-44. Breen, M. P. (1985). The social context for language learning – a neglected situation Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 7, 135-158. Borg, S. (2009). Language teacher cognition. In A. Burns & J. C. Richards (eds.), The Cambridge Guide to second language teacher education (pp. 163-171). Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. Burns, A. (2009).Grammar and communicative language teaching: Why, when and how to teach it? CamTESOL on English Language Teaching: Selected Papers, Vol. 5 (pp.9-15). Cook, G. (2010). Translation in language teaching. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. Ellis, R. (1986). Understanding second language acquisition. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Krashen, S. (1982). Principles and practices in second language acquisition. New York, NY: Pergamon. Leontiev, A. N. (1981). The problem of activity in psychology. In J. V. Wertsch (Ed. & trans.), The concept of activity in Soviet psychology (pp. 37-71). New York, NY: M.E. Sharpe. Macaro, E. (2005). Codeswitching in the L2 classroom: A communication and learning strategy. In E. Llurda (ed.), Non-native language teachers: Perceptions, challenges and contributions to the profession (pp. 63-84). New York, NY: Springer. Polio, C., & Duff, P. (1994). Teachers’ language use in university foreign language classrooms: A qualitative analysis of English and target language alternation. The Modern Language Journal, 78, 313-326. Swain, M. (1985). Communicative competence: Some roles of comprehensible input and comprehensible output in its development. In S. Gass & C. Madden (eds.), Input and second language acquisition (pp. 235-254). Rowley, MA: Newbury House. Swain, M., & Lapkin, S. (2000). Task-based second language learning: The uses of the first language. Language Teaching Research, 4, 253-276. Turnbull, M. (2005). Investigating and understanding Core French teachers’ uses of English and French: Beliefs and practices. Final report submitted to Eastern and Western School District, P. E. I Watanabe, Y. (2008). Peer-peer interaction between L2 learners of different proficiency levels: Their interactions and reflections. The Canadian Modern Language Review, 64(4), 605-635. Solutions to Double Puzzle ☻ Clue words: language, education, teacher, professional, development, students, english, course, translation Hidden message: OpportunitasVolume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 19
  • 20. Teaching in Focus Activities that work… Do Thi Xuan Hoa Do you keep a teaching journal? Do you own a lesson plan that works well with a group of students? Do you have any experience applying new approaches or activities that are expected to be successful but actually turn out failures? If you say “yes” to one of the above questions, then why don’t you share your knowledge with your colleague? Not only can useful practices be popularized but potential mistakes or problems can be avoided thanks to this sharing activity. And to have a kick-off for this newly-set habit among lecturers in our faculty, I would like to share with you how I adapt some conventional activities in our actual class setting and with our students. Slap the board Matching T prepares a list of words taken This activity is quite demanding for T but it pays off from a recording related to a certain when Ss can remember the words well as they move to theme, say sickness or natural find their partners and when they do the follow up disaster, and some other words with exercise. similar pronunciation. For each part This activity works most effectively in a class with the of the recording, T asks 4 to 6 number of students divisible by 3. students to stand right in front of the blackboard. T plays the Phase 1 recording and students listen then T prepares 1 set of words, 1 set of explanation for the slap at any words they catch. meaning of the words and 1 set of pictures that demonstrate the words. T delivers the small pieces of papers to Ss and asks Asking students to stand near the them to find other two Ss so that the word, the explanation board, rather than at a certain and the picture match. distance, appears suitable in our Phase 2 narrow classroom. Moreover, with 4 to 6 students playing at a time, T Once Ss finish finding their partners, T can give a small gift for can get almost all students involved the fastest group. in an activity. Ss are then put in new groups of 4 to 6 members. T should bear in mind that no group should have more than one S from the previous group. T gives each group a handout with a filling in the blank exercise using the words they have just learned. T sets time for the groups. When time is over, each group sends one representative to the board to write the answers. T checks. Another small gift can be given to a group with all correct answers Phase 3 Finally, T gives each S a handout of all the new words, picture, explanation and example. T can ask some Ss to pronounce the words and give Vietnamese equivalence for “difficult” words.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 20
  • 21. Call for Contribution Editorial Board FELTE Quarterly (FQ) invites you to submit articles. FQ is a journal of, for and by FELTE teachers to report on multifaceted life at Faculty of English Language Teacher Education, ULIS, VNU and to engage its staff members in collegial discussion about issues in the field. FQ is published quarterly as an e-journal and for internal circulation only. Below are the guidelines for submission. 1. Submission categories - News (in FELTE Rhythm): pieces of news about pre-eminent activities involving FELTE teachers to keep the whole faculty staff up to date. - Interviews (in FELTE Faces): interviews with conspicuous faculty figures so that their colleagues can learn from their recipes for success. - Feature articles: research reports on a variety of ELT issues. - Reviews: reviews of ELT- related books, articles, and other teaching – learning materials - Teaching in focus: practical ideas for classrooms (including but not limited to lesson plan, worksheets and Power Point slide show). - Do you know: short pieces of information which are often taken for granted but may be new to quite a few. - Fun corner: may include but not limited to word searches, crossword puzzles, funny stories and comic strips for edutainment. 2. Technical requirements - The submission should conform to the style guidelines in The Publications Manual of the American Psychological Association(6th edition). For information, see the APA Web site. - Authors may use British or American spelling, but they must be consistent. - Submit manuscripts electronically to the FQ Managerial Board via the email address chidoangiaovienspta@gmail.com. - Submissions should be in Microsoft Word or compatible program. Please submit figures, graphs, and other graphic elements in a standard graphic format (e.g., JPEG) or Excel. Tables should be created in Microsoft Word or compatible program. - All quoted material must be cited in text and in a reference list. The FQ Editorial Advisory Board will determine a clear policy and definition of plagiarism, and its decision will be final.Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 21
  • 22. FELTE QUARTERLY Volume I ☼ Issue 1 ☼ Summer 2011 Faculty of English Language Teacher EducationUniversity of Languages and International Studies, VNU 22