Postdoctoral Research Project

 

I currently hold a position as a postdoctoral researcher (financed by the Swedish Research Council) at the research group Language and Culture in Europe at Linköping University. In my current project I develop methods for analyzing affordances for language learning in text-based interaction (instant messaging).

 

Language learning is both an individual and an interactional achievement. Psycholinguistic approaches to language learning have been accused of isolating the individual and considering the internal processes of language learning without taking the context into account. Contrarily, while addressing the situated nature of language use and language learning, interactional approaches have been criticized for omitting the learning that is not verbalized in the interaction.


The current project brings further insight into language learning by combining psycholinguistic and interactional perspectives. This is accomplished through an analysis of Synchronous Computer-Mediated-Communication (SCMC) between learners of English and future or practicing teachers of English. The particular affordances of SCMC allow for a combination of an interactional analysis of the emerging conversation and an analysis of the individuals’ focus of attention in relation to linguistic content and form, primarily through the employment of eye tracking and keystroke logging equipment. It is suggested that the proposed novel setup can be used to evaluate the effects of different types of interactive teaching strategies on learners’ language awareness. The data gathered can be further employed to give future teachers the opportunity to reflect on the relation between teacher input and noticing, as well as on the advantages and drawbacks of employing SCMC in language education.