June 4th, 2018
Affect and learner autonomy
In our second LAb session, we explored the role of affective factors in the development of learner autonomy. By affect, we mean the motivational and emotional factors that influence success in language learning. Questions we considered were: What is the relationship between affect and learning? What tools and strategies can language learners draw upon to achieve a greater sense of awareness and control over their emotions? and how can research in other fields influence research in applied linguistics? Through a series of short presentations, we shared ideas and engaged in discussion about this important aspect of the learning process.
Session facilitators: Satoko Kato, Jo Mynard, Hayo Reinders, Scott Shelton-Strong
Welcome / about RILAE / this LAb session
Christina Gkonou – Featured workshop: Managing emotions for learner autonomy
Kevin Knight – Bright idea: Motivating SALC learning advisors with inspirational leadership and business consulting models
Hisako Yamashita – Featured presentation: Affect as an “essential resource” in the development of learner autonomy
Sina Takada – Research report: Affect in a study group (peer group)
Neil Curry and Kate Maher – Innovative practice: CBT-based classroom activities for language anxiety
Diana Feick – Research report: Emotions and group autonomy
Dominic Edsall – Research report: A pilot project on teacher negotiation of learner autonomy
Satoko Kato – Innovative practice: Enhancing professional well-being of teachers and advisors through reflective dialogue
Maria de la Paz Adelia Peña Clavel – Book review: Emotions in Second Language Teaching by Juan De Dios Martinez Agudo (Ed.)
Tim Murphey – Featured presentation: The emotional impact of adding social testing components to regular tests and quizzes
Eduardo Castro – Featured presentation: Emotions in advising in language learning
1. Featured Presentations/Workshops
Eduardo Castro, Federal University of Pará, Brazil
Emotions in advising in language learning
In this presentation, I discuss how emotions are perceived in the context of advising in language learning by both learners and language advisers. As the former’s discourse is highly loaded with emotions emerging from their learning experiences, understanding how they are manifested and perceived in the interaction with a language adviser is crucial to foster learner autonomy. Based on data from adviser’s logbooks and transcriptions of language advising sessions, I highlight that affective factors should be part of advisers’ theoretical tools, as one cannot promote autonomy and motivation without considering emotions and feelings in the learning process.
Eduardo Castro teaches applied linguistics at the Federal University of Pará, Brazil, where he is also a language adviser at the self-access center of that institution. His research interests are motivation, language advising, and affect in language learning and teaching.
Christina Gkonou, University of Essex, UK
Managing emotions for learner autonomy
In this workshop, we will consider the importance of emotional self-regulation for language learners by looking at useful strategies and how they could be tailored around learners’ emotional experiences and needs. We will discuss an innovative, scenario-based questionnaire called Managing Your Emotions for Language Learning (MYE; Gkonou & Oxford, 2017), highlighting practical ways in which it could be used for research purposes and/or classroom practice, or by language learners who wish to take control of the emotional dimensions of their own learning.
Dr Christina Gkonou is Assistant Professor and MA TESOL Programme Leader in the Department of Language and Linguistics at the University of Essex, UK. She is also Deputy Director of Education in the same Department. She convenes postgraduate modules on teacher education and development, and on psychological aspects surrounding the foreign language learning and teaching experience. She is the co-editor of New Directions in Language Learning Psychology and New Insights into Language Anxiety: Theory, Research and Educational Implications, and co-author of MYE: Managing Your Emotions Questionnaire.
Tim Murphey, Kanda University of International Studies, Japan
The Emotional Impact of Adding Social Testing Components
One of the greatest anxiety provoking things in a student’s regular life are tests and quizzes. Adding a social aspect to a quiz/test is actually quite easy especially if we are also allowing students the autonomy of self evaluation, which is the highest ranked activity that improves student learning according to Hattie’s meta-analyses (2012). When students know they are going to autonomously give themselves a grade and evaluate their own abilities they tend to strive more to learn more in every activity. In “social testing” students give themselves grades at two points in time; first, after a period of doing a test by themselves; the second, after asking each other for answers and writing them down. (Note that this is not copying. A student asks another for the answer and she tells him and he writes it down. They might have a discussion or ask for spelling as well. Then they change partners and interact with others in the same way.) After the first such test, many students generally say that they were helped by their classmates, but that they were not able to help in return and regretted it and that they wanted to study harder in order to be able to help their classmates. Altruistically helping others is a dopamine rush they don’t want to miss. The self grading and social testing also parallels self determination theory’s emphasis on autonomy, competence, and relatedness (Ryan & Deci, 2002).
Ryan, R. M. & Deci, E. L. (Eds.), (2002). Self-determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well-being. American Psychologist, 55, 68-78. https://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.55.1.68
Tim Murphey (firstname.lastname@example.org) PhD Université de Neuchâtel, Switzerland, TESOL’s Professional Development in Language Education series editor, co-author with Zoltan Dörnyei of Group Dynamics in the Language Classroom (CUP), author of Music and Song (OUP), researches Vygotskian Ssocio cultural theory (SCT) with transdisciplinary emphasis on community, play, and music at Kanda University, Japan. His most recent books are Teaching in Pursuit of Wow! (Abax, 2012) and Meaningful Action – Earl Stevick’s Influence on Language Teaching (CUP, 2013), co-edited with Jane Arnold. He also has a critical novel on the Japanese entrance exam system in Italian, Japanese, and English, The Tale that Wags, along with 40 book chapters.
Hisako Yamashita, Konan Women’s University, Japan
Affect as an “essential resource” in the development of learner autonomy
Is learner affect something that is difficult to deal with for advisors and teachers? What role does affect have on learners’ development of learner autonomy? In this presentation, I’d like to propose that instead of viewing learners’ negative affect as something that impedes learning, we should embrace both positive and negative affect, as an ‘essential resource’ that advisors and learners should make use of in helping learners become autonomous and achieve their learning goals in a self-fulfilling way. I will share data from my case study and also touch on the roles of advisors and teachers in working with learners’ affect in their learning process.
Hisako Yamashita is a lecturer and a learning advisor at Konan Women’s University in Kobe, Japan. She is the current president of Japan Association for Self-Access Learning (JASAL). Her research interests include affect, affordances and reflective dialogues. She has been actively developing a variety of activities which facilitates learners’ interpersonal and intrapersonal reflective dialogues in classrooms and in self-access centers.
2. Research Reports
Dominic Edsall, University College London, Institute of Education, UK
A Pilot Project on Teacher Negotiation of Learner Autonomy
As part of my continuing doctoral studies, I undertook a pilot project that looked at how teachers negotiate increased learner autonomy. Through qualitative interviews with EFL instructors and students at 3 different universities in Japan, I investigated how autonomy was defined by teachers and students in the social setting of the university EFL class. Initial results indicate that motivation, affect and social legitimation are heavily involved in these negotiations.
Dominic has been teaching in the UK and Japan for more than 15 years. He is currently studying for a PhD and is a doctoral candidate in the Curriculum, Pedagogy & Assessment department at UCL Institute of Education, UK
Diana Feick, University of Auckland, New Zealand
Emotions and group autonomy
I will present selected results of a study on group interactions and L2 decision making processes of adult German learners during a mobile phone video project. The video-stimulated recall data showed that group members experience a range of emotions during their decision making interaction, e.g. emotional divergence, convergence of negative emotions, and individual negative emotions. These emotions can be linked to different group discourse types that are likely to create either personal or group autonomy.
Diana Feick is a Senior Lecturer of German at the School of Cultures, Languages, and Linguistics of the University of Auckland. Her research interests are learner autonomy, group interaction, mobile language learning, and teaching and learning of German as a foreign language.
Sina Takada, Kanda University of International Studies, Japan
Affect in a Study Group (peer group)
This short presentation reports on a research project conducted by myself and a classmate for the applied linguistics class at KUIS (Kanda University of International Studies). The project was about the “Study Group” where students can gather and study English together. The research aimed to find out whether participants of the Study Group had developed autonomy, and we conducted face to face semi-structured interviews with 6 members. To one of the questions “Do you think your motivation has changed after joining Study Group?”, four people answered “Yes”. They commonly explained that they are urged to study when they see other members studying hard. Another participant answered by “No” (“my motivation is already high and never changes”) and the other said that her motivation negatively correlates to that of others. These answers gave us interesting insight in promoting such peer groups.
Having studied English in KUIS, I am currently a student in the graduate program in KUIS, and studying MA TESOL. I am especially interested in individual differences, learner autonomy, phonetics, and trying to find various ways of learning that fit different individuals.
3. Innovative Practice
Neil Curry, Kanda University of International Studies, Japan
Kate Maher, Kyoto University of Foreign Studies, Japan
CBT-based classroom activities for language anxiety
Speaking anxiety is a problem faced by many students, both inside and outside class. The researchers are working on designing activities based on the methods used in CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) to use in classrooms to promote confidence and positive thinking by students towards their language abilities, and provide them with strategies for dealing with situations where they may be anxious. As students are often concerned with their perceptions of how their abilities are regarded by their peers, activities should also serve to act as a bonding exercise for students, allowing them to share concerns. We will describe a recent activity we have been trialing and discuss the principles underlying it.
Neil Curry is a Principal Learning Advisor in the Self-Access Learning Center (SALC) at Kanda University of International Studies. His interests include language anxiety and learner autonomy.
Kate Maher is an assistant professor in the Department of British and American Studies, Kyoto University of Foreign Studies. Kate’s main research interests are the relationship between anxiety and silent behaviour in the foreign language classroom and using CBT-based approaches for anxious learners.
Satoko Kato, Kanda University of International Studies, Japan
Enhancing Professional Well-being of Teachers and Advisors through Reflective Dialogue
Why is well-being for teachers and advisors important? In recent years, research on teachers’ well-being which has a significant relationship with teachers’ motivation as well as positive effects on both teachers and on their students has been growing (Homes, 2005; Mercer, 2016). This short talk focuses on enhancing well-being of teachers and advisors through applying the approach of ‘reflective dialogue’ introduced in Advising in Language Learning which aims at promoting learner autonomy (Kato & Mynard, 2015).
Satoko Kato is a Senior Education Coordinator, at Research Institute for Learner Autonomy Education, Kanda University of International Studies in Japan. She holds a Master’s degree (TESOL) from Teachers College, Columbia University, NY. She has conducted over 3,800 advising sessions in the past 12 years working on promoting learner autonomy. She is also developing and implementing advisor education programs domestically and internationally. She co-authored a book “Reflective Dialogue: Advising in language”(with Jo Mynard) published by Routledge NY, 2015.
4. Book Review
Maria de la Paz Adelia Peña Clavel, UNAM, Mexico
Emotions in Second Language Teaching by Juan De Dios Martinez Agudo (Ed.)
In this talk, I would like to make a comment of book about researching emotions in language teachers as well as sharing with you my expectations and ideas that I have had while reading “Emotions in Second Language Teaching.”
Adelia Peña Clavel has been the Coordinator of the Self Access Centre at the School of Languages, Linguistics and Translation-UNAM, Mexico since 2017. She is a tutor on the Online Diploma Course for Self-Access Language Learning Advisors. Her main interests are researching teletándem, agency and autonomy in Language Learners. She is also interested in promoting a use of technology to promote learner autonomy and language learning.
5. Bright Idea
Kevin Knight, Kanda University of International Studies, Japan
Motivating SALC Learning Advisors with Inspirational Leadership and Business Consulting Models
Goleman (2013, p. 25) writes that “leaders who inspire can articulate shared values that resonate with and motivate the group….Inspiring leadership demands attuning both to an inner emotional reality and to that of those we seek to inspire.” The bright idea in this session is to use “metaphor” as a tool to inspire SALC Learning Advisors. Knight (2015, 2017) conceptualizes leadership as a “creative activity,” and the speaker draws on his research, TED Talks, and other sources to show how SALC Learning Advisors are acting from a metaphorical perspective as leaders and business consultants who empower their clients to create what THEY want to create.
Dr. Kevin Knight (PhD in linguistics, MBA, MPIA) is an associate professor in the Department of International Communication (International Business Career major) and a researcher in the Research Institute for Learner Autonomy Education (RILAE) of Kanda University of International Studies in Chiba, Japan. In TESOL International Association, he is an ESP blogger, ESPIS former chair, and co-editor of ESP News. (See https://researchmap.jp/7000015200/?lang=english)