Language Grammar

Problem Solving in a Foreign Language: A Study in Content by Lena Heine

By Lena Heine

Even supposing content material and Language built-in studying (CLIL) is a well-liked instructing strategy, learn on CLIL has approximately solely enthusiastic about elements of language studying. along with that, we're nonetheless missing any cognitively well-grounded thought in regards to the detailed gains of contexts within which the focal point is on content material studying, yet within which a overseas language is used because the medium of speaking details. This publication re-examines the root for CLIL from a cognitive viewpoint and investigates how using a overseas language as a operating language affects the processing of content material. It summarizes findings from cognitive psychology on considering, challenge fixing and conceptual processing, and integrates them with types of language-specific psychological actions reminiscent of speech processing and textual content composition. this offers a theoretically well-grounded foundation for the certainty of the targeted positive aspects of CLIL, and promotes a Cognitive Linguistic point of view on CLIL pedagogy.The theoretical issues shape the foundation for an empirical examine that gives the 1st insights into what CLIL newcomers really do once they clear up content-focused projects whereas utilizing an L2. via spontaneous verbalization of notion, designated verbal protocols have been elicited and analysed into language and content material targeted cognitive tactics. The research exhibits that either language and conceptual concept engage heavily and specialise in language normally has optimistic results at the processing of semantic content material; using an L2 as operating language can improve this impact. also, the examine deals an intensive mirrored image and new views on verbal protocols as examine instruments, particularly in L2 contexts.

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After that it needs to be decided which language-specific processes are relevant for this study. In order to do this I will give an overview of linguistic conceptualizations which reveals what language-specific cognitive processes have been assumed in linguistic theories. , Schwarz 1996: 138ff). If a modular structure is assumed that is subdivided into phonology, morphosyntax, lexicon and semantics, separate processing of information in these sub-modules is assumed as well. So, distinct representations of phonological, morphosyntactic or semantic levels are assumed which are separate from nonlinguistic information.

However, information that is coded in the linguistic information alone is often not sufficient for comprehension. The linguistic surface structure shows gaps that have to be closed by the reader through inference (Christmann and Scheele 2001; Singer 1994). Text comprehension thus needs to be understood both as a bottom-up process that starts out from the data in the actual text, and a top-down process that is guided by the reader’s previous knowledge. This view results from the following empirical evidence: Psycholinguistic studies investigating eye movement data were able to show that readers visually focus text in so called saccades, and perceive only small parts of a text at a time.

Just listen to the way they speak! (Pinker 2007: 50) Nevertheless, in studies that have taken regard to this methodological issue and used non-linguistic data, it could be shown that different languages embody different conceptual classifications of the world, for instance in that semantic contrasts expressed by grammar lead to differences in perspective and foregrounding of certain aspects of concepts (Lucy 1992; see also overview in Pavlenko 2005), while here too, it has to be concluded that linguistic structure is not the only factor that influences thought.

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