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Errors and Mistakes

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Techniques in TESOL - Lecture

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Errors and Mistakes

  1. 1. Errors and Mistakes
  2. 2. Statements about feedback <ul><li>The fact that the teacher gives feedback on student performance implies a power hierarchy: the teacher above, the student below. </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul><ul><li>Assessment is potentially humiliating to the assessed person. </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers should give only positive feedback, in order to encourage, raise confidence and promote feelings of success; negative feedback demoralises. </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul>
  3. 3. Statements about feedback <ul><li>Giving plenty of praise and encouragement is important for the fostering of good teacher-student relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul><ul><li>Very frequent approval and praise lose their encouraging effect; and lack of praise may then be interpreted as negative feedback </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul><ul><li>Correcting each other can be harmful to student relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Very much agree Totally disagree </li></ul>
  4. 4. Mistakes and Errors <ul><li>Intralingual (within one language) errors </li></ul><ul><li>Interlingual (across two or more languages) errors </li></ul><ul><li>” A learner’s errors…are significant in (that) they provide to the researcher evidence of how language is learned or acquired, what strategies or procedures the learner is employing in the discovery of the language.” (Corder, 1967) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Mistakes and Errors <ul><li>A mistake refers to a performance error that is either a random guess or a “slip,” in that it is a failure to utilise a known system correctly. </li></ul><ul><li>An error , a noticeable deviation from the adult grammar of a native speaker, reflects the competence of the learner. </li></ul><ul><li>Mistakes are what researchers have referred to as performance errors (the learner knows the system but fails to use it) while the errors are a result of one’s systematic competence (the learner’s system is incorrect). </li></ul>
  6. 6. Mistakes and Errors <ul><li>Think about to what extent your learning or teaching has been characterised by a progression of noticing and repair? Can you think of stages when you were in the process of cleaning up your errors and may have made a few random mistakes? What do you do? </li></ul>
  7. 7. What’s the difference? <ul><li>An error cannot be self-corrected, according to James (1998), while mistakes can be self-corrected if the deviation is pointed out to the speaker. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Error Analysis <ul><li>Learners from disparate language backgrounds tend to make similar errors in learning one target language. </li></ul><ul><li>Interlingual errors of interference from the native language </li></ul><ul><li>Intralingual errors within the target language </li></ul><ul><li>The sociolinguistic context of communication </li></ul><ul><li>Pyscholinguistic or cognitive strategies </li></ul><ul><li>Affective variables </li></ul>
  9. 9. Too much attention to error <ul><li>We must be aware of placing too much attention on errors and not lose sight of the value of positive reinforcement or clearly expressed language that is a product of the learner’s progress and development. </li></ul><ul><li>The comprehension of language is as important as the production . Language is speaking and listening, writing and reading. </li></ul><ul><li>The absence of the error does not necessarily reflect native-like competence because learners may be avoiding the very structures that pose difficulty for them. </li></ul><ul><li>We need to engage in performance analysis or inter-language analysis, a less restrictive concept that places a healthy investigation or errors within the larger perspective of the learner’s total language performance. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Sources of Error <ul><li>TABLE 9,1 PG 265 BROWN </li></ul><ul><li>Interlingual Transfer </li></ul><ul><li>Intralingual Transfer </li></ul><ul><li>Context of Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Communication Strategies </li></ul>
  11. 11. Identifying and Describing Errors <ul><li>“ Does John can Sing?” </li></ul><ul><li>A. no </li></ul><ul><li>B. Yes </li></ul><ul><li>D. Can John sing? </li></ul><ul><li>E. Original sentence contained pre-posed do auxiliary applicable to most verbs, but not to verbs with modal auxiliaries OUT2 </li></ul>
  12. 12. Identifying and Describing Errors <ul><li>“ I saw their department” </li></ul><ul><li>YES </li></ul><ul><li>NO (Context was a conversation about living quarters in Mexico) </li></ul><ul><li>NO </li></ul><ul><li>F. YES. Spanish </li></ul><ul><li>G. YO vi su departamento. YES </li></ul><ul><li>H. I saw their apartment </li></ul><ul><li>E. Departamento was translated to false congate department. OUT2 </li></ul>
  13. 13. But…what can I do more quickly? <ul><li>Generalised errors: addition, omission, substitution and/or ordering </li></ul><ul><li>Levels of language need to be considered: phonology, orthography, lexicon, grammar and discourse </li></ul><ul><li>Global errors hinder communication: ; they prevent the hearer from comprehending some/all aspect of the message. Local errors do not prevent the message from being heard, usually because there is only a minor violation on one segment of a sentence, allowing the hearer/reader to make an accurate guess about the intended meaning. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Stages of learner language development <ul><li>Random Errors – pre-systematic stage </li></ul><ul><li>Emergent Stage </li></ul><ul><li>Systematic Stage </li></ul><ul><li>Postsystematic or stabilisation stage </li></ul>
  15. 15. References <ul><li>Brown, 273- 280 Errors in the Classroom </li></ul><ul><li>Celce-Murcia and Hawkins, 1985, Contrastive analysis, error analysis and interlanguage analysis. Beyond basics: Issues and research in TESOL (44-66) Rowley, MA: Newbury House </li></ul><ul><li>Gass (1989) </li></ul><ul><li>James (1998) Errors in language learning and use: Exploring error analysis. Harlow, UK: Addison Wesley Longman </li></ul><ul><li>Corder (1967), The significance of learners’ errors. International review of Applied Linguistics, 5, 161-170 </li></ul><ul><li>Corder (1971) Idiosyncratic dialects and error analysis. International review of Applied Linguistics, 9, 147-159 </li></ul><ul><li>Panova I and Lyster R(2002), Patterns of corrective feedback and uptake in an adult ESL classroom, TESOL Quarterly, 36 – 573-595 </li></ul>

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