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Handbook for Foreign Language Learning in Online Tandems and Educational Settings

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Edited By Hermann Funk, Manja Gerlach and Dorothea Spaniel-Weise

This book is about foreign language learning in non-formal Online Tandems. The collected papers by contributors who have expertise in the field of Language Pedagogy and Foreign Language Acquisition gather information on online interactions, such as the initiation of tandems, the mentoring of online activities and learners’ interaction, as well as the assessment of the processes at hand. The handbook targets stakeholders, institutions of higher education, language teachers and tandem trainers at educational institutions that want to set up Online Tandems especially designed for third language learners. The book is the result of the three-year project L3TASK carried out at five universities in Austria (Wien), Germany (Jena) and Spain (Alicante, Barcelona, Madrid) and associated partner institutions in China. It was funded by the European Commission in the frame of the Life Long Learning Programme.

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1.1 Same Same, but Different: How to Find Common Ground in Terminology in Interdisciplinary and International Foreign Language Research?

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1.1 Same Same, but Different: How to Find Common Ground in Terminology in Interdisciplinary and International Foreign Language Research?

This handbook comprises several articles of international researchers of different mother tongues, using the same terminology. Precise definitions are a basic precondition of our research work and all of us invest time and great effort in explaining terms and research proceedings. Although we often use the same terms when describing our work and their findings, the implicit knowledge underlying those terms sometimes varies considerably. Inevitably terminology changes with time and additional research that sometimes produces a clearer picture of a well-known term. Thus, in the short history of systematic research in methods of language teaching and learning which began in the nineteen-fifties, different schools often used the same term in a very different meaning. Take, for example communication. In the audiolingual school of the fifties and early sixties the term communication was used by Robert Lado and curriculum designers to describe an oral process of exchanging ideas mainly in the form of dialogues. The communicative approach has used the same term in a much more comprehensive way including the whole process of interpersonal exchange and all types of texts. Based on the pragmalinguistic theory, communication can be described as a process ranging from the conception, the communicative intention to the linguistic realisation of utterances. Misunderstandings are inevitable. Although the progress of the research development has been fundamental we still lack a commonly accepted model of language acquisition. So far,...

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