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Linguistics Seminar Series - Presentation by Roy Lyster, PhD

Event Type
biliteracy development, content-based language teaching, second language education
Linguistics Department
FLB 1080, Lucy Ellis Lounge
Sep 25, 2017   4:00 - 5:00 pm  
Roy Lyster
Chase Adams

"Language-Focused Instruction in Content-Based Classrooms"

Of the presentation, Roy has this to say: 

[Abstract] Content-based language teaching (CBLT) is an instructional approach in which non-linguistic curricular content such as geography or science is taught to students through the medium of a language that they are learning as an additional language. Crossing a wide range of international contexts and instructional settings, CBLT comes in many shapes and sizes with various names including content-based instruction (CBI), content and language integrated learning (CLIL), English-medium instruction (EMI), and immersion.

The appeal of CBLT lies in its potential to enrich classroom discourse in a way that provides both a cognitive basis for language learning and a motivational basis for purposeful communication. Often overlooked, however, is the research evidence demonstrating that CBLT, to be successful, does not preclude a focus on language and instead needs to promote its integration through a counterbalanced approach that encourages shifts in learners’ attentional focus between language and content.

In spite of tremendous differences across contexts of CBLT, there are some common pedagogical issues that arise at the interface of language and content teaching—issues that need to be accounted for when implementing such programs. Drawing on empirical research, this talk will identify convergent concerns across divergent contexts of CBLT and conclude with proposals for best practices for optimizing second language development.

Roy Lyster received his PhD in Applied Linguistics at the University of Toronto. He is now a Professor of Second Language Education in the Department of Integrated Studies Education at McGill University.  

His CV and Google Scholar Profile can be found either on his website here.

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