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ERIC Number: ED161295
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1976
Pages: 14
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Notional Syllabuses: Theory into Practice. L'enseignement de la competence de communication en langues secondes. Actes du colloque de la Commission interuniversitaire suisse de linguistique appliquee. Bulletin CILA (The Teaching of Communicative Competence in Second Languages. Acts of the Colloquium of the Swiss Interuniversity Commission for Applied Linguistics. CILA Bulletin).
Wilkins, David
This paper discusses the theory and practice of the notional syllabus, three specific problems arising from it, and an experimental course proposed as one way of implementing it. Basically, a notional syllabus aims to organize language teaching in terms of the purposes of communication. Its foundation is a system of notional categories and the determination of forms of language appropriate for the expression of the purposes of communication. The practical problems discussed here involve the manner of integrating isolated items, continuity and coherence, and the relationship between grammar and conceptual categories. Because language is complex, the sentences in any one unit generally do not represent isolated items but several kinds of conceptual, modal and functional meanings. Therefore, a series of higher organizing principles is needed that group notional categories in useful ways and within which individual items can be integrated. A syllabus providing continuity and the advantages of situational contexts, maximum generalization and coherent presentation of different language functions will have a complex structure. Grammar will not be presented systematically, because form and meaning are not in a one-to-one relationship. This situation leaves unanswered the question of how the learning of grammar can be effectively promoted. Finally, the segment of the course that is outlined attempted to face these problems by organizing the content around the notion "social language skills" in a partly functional, partly situational syllabus. (AMH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Commission Interuniversitaire Suisse de Linguistique Appliquee (Switzerland).