ERIC Number: ED481794
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2003
The Diglossic Foreign-Language Classroom: Learners' Views on L1 and L2 Functions.
This study examined the views of college learners of German regarding desired degrees of first language (L1) versus second language (L2) use, how desired language use related to observed language use for students and teachers, gaps between desired and observed language, tasks for which students expressed strong preference for L1 and for L2, how learners at three different levels varied in language preference for specific tasks, and common functions for those tasks for which learners expressed the same language preference (at each level of language study). Surveys of 330 German learners enrolled at three levels of study indicated that students considered their speech community (the classroom) diglossic. The most pressing and genuine communicative purposes were generally apportioned to the L1. "Real" L2 communication often involved asymmetric interactions, with the teacher and students playing distinctly different roles. Although participants expressed stronger preference for the L2 as enrollment levels increased, some core functions remained firmly associated with the L1. Teachers consistently tended toward the L2 more strongly than their students desired. Students reported that they used the L1 more than they themselves wanted to. Despite an increase in observed L2 use with each level of enrollment, the profession and the students appeared separated in their views of what the communicative classroom was about. The survey and data analyses are appended. (Contains 63 references.) (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: The Sociolinguistics of Foreign-Language Classrooms: Contributions of the Native, the Near-Native, and the Non-Native Speaker. Issues in Language Program Direction, A Series of Annual Volumes; see FL 027 869.