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Assessment task – Writing an essay
You are asked to read the following 8 issues and choose 4 of them to write an
essay to present and discuss the issues selected.
You would need to draw on the issues we discussed in the lecture and your
presentations and relevant reading to support your arguments in the essay of the 4
selected issues.
Please read the following 8 issues and choose 4 of them for your essay writing:
1. Present your critical comments on different views to definitions of Applied
Linguistics and then interpret the functions of Applied Linguistics.
2. Explain why we should “think of Applied Linguistics as a coherent
discipline rather than as a collection of unconnected language project”
(Davies, 2007: 17).
3. Present how the distinction between linguistics and applied linguistics is
approached. What can be identified as major components in the research
approaching to the problems of English in India?
4. Explain why Applied Linguistics is concerned with language teaching and
learning and what can be identified from the claims on the activities of
Applied Linguistics?
5. Present a description of the areas of language in use and the application of
Applied Linguistics in language use.
6. Present a description of the major aspects in the profession of Applied
Linguistics and the current concern of ethics in Applied Linguistics.
7. Present a description of the changes in Applied Linguistics practice.
8. Present an analysis of different views to native speakers and your viewpoints
of standard English.
This essay is aim to find out the solution for each issue in 4 chapters that we
have learned in Applied Linguistics course.
1. Present how the distinction between linguistics and applied linguistics is
approached. What can be identified as major components in the research
approaching to the problems of English in India?
The relation between linguistics and applied linguistics is explored in relation to
areas of shared interest as well as the distinction between the very different
approaches made by linguists and applied linguists to the way people use language,
what is often referred to as the study of language in situation.
Briefly, the process is the distinction between linguistics and applied because
while linguistics start from the theory to practical problems then conduct
descriptive researches and finally come back to prove the theory. On the other
hands, Applied linguistics start from the practical problems first then analyze data
by applying available theories and propose the solutions to the problems.
According to Alan Davies W. Keith Mitchell (An introduction to applied
linguistics, p.51), he illustrated that the linguist will experience a discussion among
elders in an Australian aboriginal community, where only very few still speak the
first language (L1), and will think of vocabulary lists and informants to help to
write a grammar. The applied linguist, listening to the same discussion, will
consider policy issues (should/can the language be maintained?) and whether to
advocate a bilingual programme in the schools (English plus the local language) or
an English-only programme.
As for the work of E. Annamalai (1998), he collected survey data of the
numbers of mother tongue speakers in India and attempted to relate those statistics
to linguistic definitions of the various language groupings and families. The result
is that there are no majority languages with speakers beyond 50% of the country’s
population which is explainable to state that all languages in India are minority
languages. As it can be seen, Annamalai’s research provides a description of a
language situation diachronically in which he used the term “language” as its
original meaning. However, the social setting here is not only about the “language”
itself but also related to the political field. On the other hand, applied linguistics do
not intentionally give a detailed description of India situation but address necessary
questions, those are taken from the current issues of the ineffective English
teaching in India. They might be “Why is English taught so widely in India when
its results are so unsatisfactory?”;“How can the teaching of English be improved?”
To conclude, the major components in the research approaching are that while
the linguistics conducted survey and give the statistics of India languages
diachronically to in order to prove that there is no majority language in India, the
applied linguistics approach the practical issues synchronically in other fields such
as language teaching: the English teaching policy, the resources, the teacher’s
proficiency… to solve the ineffective English teaching problems in India.
8. Present an analysis of different views to native speakers and your viewpoints
of standard English.
Linguists, applied linguists and language teachers all appeal to the native
speaker as an important reference point. But what exactly (who exactly?) is the
native speaker? It is difficult to give the definition of this term.
As Preston remarks: ‘from a psycholinguistic point of view, nativeness is
almost the entire question of SLA’ (1989: 78) whereas from sociolinguistics point
of view, variation is so central that there is no interest in pursuing or defining the
NS: the study of every individual, since everyone is a NS of his/her own idiolect.
This no doubt explains why Trudgill is happy (and cavalier) enough to define the
native speaker thus: ‘a speaker who has a language as their first language’ (2003:
92). For applied linguistics, then, we can explain the native speaker as the
embodiment of the standard language, itself maintained and demonstrated by the
synchronic interaction of institutions and available through education both to NNS
and to NSs.
From my point of view, there is no exact definition for standard English
because it depends on the native speaker using this type of English. It can be
defined as the "correct" form of English, used in formal speaking or writing. The
majority of words in English dictionaries and thesauruses are part of standard
English.
4. Explain why Applied Linguistics is concerned with language teaching and
learning and what can be identified from the claims on the activities of Applied
Linguistics?
Applied linguistics is an interdisciplinary science. It studies language and
linguistics in relation to practical problems and it studies language teaching and
learning. Applied linguistics provides findings and principles that help in language
acquisition. These findings and disciplines are brought from researches on
linguistics and language. The system of language teaching and learning involves
interlocking elements that each one has its role in the process. Teacher, pupil, aids
and educational theories are elements that summed up under the system of
language teaching and learning. They are modified by the linguists who studies and
research on language and linguistics.
Applied linguistics can have positive impact on language teachers and has
potential for a much greater impact if problems of transfer can be addressed.
Applied linguistics helps teachers to produce better learning experiences and more
sophisticated and complex view of language teachers’ knowledge, knowledge
acquisition, and into knowledge use which takes account the insights from research
in these areas.
Through claims on activities on applied linguistic the main point can be
identified is that applied linguistics has played a crucial role in not only language
teaching and learning, but also in language policy and planning especially
contributing solving the basic real-world problems. Obviously, with the knowledge
of applied linguistic handling with language-related problems and it makes abstract
ideas and research findings accessible and relevant to real world. In other words,
applied linguists have committed themselves to general obligations and duties of
providing theoretical and empirical investigations of real world problems in
languages. It should be taken into account that it is the job of applied linguistics to
investigate, to analyze, and to offer recommendations for improvements and then
report on the language problems in our real world. The problems do not only
confine themselves to the area of foreign language teaching and learning, but also
in the domain of language usage of both foreign and native languages.
7.Present a description of the changes in Applied Linguistics practice.
There are real changes in applied linguistic practice over time. The changes have
took place Within comparison in language linguistic practice between 1600s and
2000s (present),there are two considerable differences supposed. Firstly areas of
applied linguistic practice used in 1600 (contrastive analysis, error analysis,
syllabus development, pedagogical grammars and testing) have developed over the
time. Secondly, what was glaringly missing in the list of chapters in the Corder
book. As first differences supposed that the comparison of varieties has branched
into world Englishes, stylistics, discourse analysis, gendered language and so on.
Contrastive linguistic studies and the study of learners’ language (error analysis)
have moved on new step, at first contrastive studies being renewed by the study of
learners’ language to become the current study of second-language acquisition,
itself also heavily influenced by developments in linguistic grammars. Syllabus
studies have become curriculum studies, widening their brief and thereby taking
far more of the context in which language teaching takes place into account.
Pedagogical grammars might well now be called a pedagogical approach to
grammar, while evaluation, validation and tests may well be termed assessment or
even perhaps classroom-based assessment
The second difference was social relation and role to the applied linguistic. It has
appeared from what was glaringly missing in the list of chapters in the Corder
book. It contained no single chapter with sociolinguistics in its title. This omission
seems grave in view of the take-over of applied linguistics by the social turn since
1975. There are many linguists who do not share this view of linguistics and who
consider that linguistics without the social dimension is a contradiction. But in
applied linguistics the social aspect dominates, and it does do for two reasons. At
first, social is essential to all understanding of language in use, that in the specific
case of language teaching all formal language learning must take account of the
context in which that learning takes place and furthermore that the context
determines and affects that learning, hence the imposing on to linguistic
competence of the super - seding communicative competence. The second reason
(and this is not wholly unrelated to the influence of the social) is that there is
noticeable now a loss of confidence in the techniques offered by Corder and widely
used in the 1960s and 1970s (and indeed 1980s) as general statements of how to
proceed
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