8 November 2018 LAb

November 8th, 2018
Identity and learner autonomy

Presentations (scroll down for abstracts)

Carol Griffiths – Featured presentation: Identity and autonomy: Complexity, context and change [Slides] [Recording]
Jacqueline Tiburcio Barwis – Research report: Identity and second language learning [Recording]
Kie Yamamoto – Featured presentation: Advisor positionality: Reflection on my identity research [Slides] [Recording]
Sin Wang Chong – Project introduction: Repository of Learner Autonomy Research [Slides] [Recording]
María de la Paz Adelia Peña Clavel – Featured presentation: Teletándem, autonomy and identity in a virtual environment [Slides] [Recording]
Alice Chik – Featured presentation: Seeing identity in visual language learning
narratives [Slides] [Recording]

In our third LAb session, we explored the role of identity in language learning and the development of language learner autonomy. By identity, we mean the “socially constructed, self-conscious, ongoing narratives that individuals perform, interpret and project in dress, bodily movements, actions and language” (Block, 2007, p. 32). In this LAb session, we would like to explore social conditions and the impact they might have on identity within the field of language education. As we take the view that identity is discursively constructed (Miller, 2014), we might explore identity constructions in advising sessions, social learning spaces, classrooms, or in online interactions (among other scenarios). Some questions to consider are: What is the relationship between identity and learner autonomy? How is identity discursively explored in language learning? And how can research in other fields influence research in applied linguistics? Through a series of short presentations with time for follow up questions and comments, we will share ideas and engage in discussion about this exciting area of applied linguistics.

Session facilitators: Satoko Kato, Jo Mynard, Hayo Reinders, Scott Shelton-Strong


Alice Chik, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia 

[Slides] [Recording]

Seeing identity in visual language learning narratives

In the last 40 years, researchers have adopted various research methodologies to explore learner autonomy development, including both quantitative and qualitative methods. However, one less frequently adopted approach is the use of visual narratives. This presentation will discuss the use of language learning silhouettes to elicit discussion on languages, emotion, identity and learner autonomy. Using a collection of silhouettes made by pre-service teachers, we especially want to focus the spaces for learning languages other than English in Australia, and implications for languages education.

Alice Chik is Senior Lecturer at Macquarie University, Australia. Her recent research interests include urban multilingualism, heritage language education, and language learning in informal learning contexts. Her recent publications include, ‘Languages of Sydney: The people and the passion’ (2018, co-authored with Susan Markose and Di Alperstein, published by Candlin & Mynard ePublishing).

Sin Wang Chong, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

[Slides] [Recording]

Repository of Learner Autonomy Research

To introduce the project of creating a repository which hosts and disseminates materials and raw data of language learner autonomy research

Sin Wang Chong is Lecturer at the Education University of Hong Kong, Associate Fellow of Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA), and a researcher at RILAE. His publications have appeared in some of the leading journals in language assessment, including Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, Assessing Writing, Language Assessment Quarterly.

María de la Paz Adelia Peña Clavel, UNAM, Mexico

[Slides] [Recording]

Teletándem, autonomy and identity in a virtual environment

Findings of previous studies have shown that teletandem could help learners enhance the development of different kinds of strategies (Peña, 2010) and, foster intercultural awareness and competence (0’Dowd, 2013). Anecdotal evidence also shows how learner identity is forged (Telles,2015). In this talk, I will review some research related to identity in language learning regarding teletandem, in order to propose that this intercultural virtual environment can have an effect on students’ identity and autonomy. It is my aim to show some examples of teletandem students’ comments as evidence that teletandem can shape students identity as language learners and have the potential to promote learner autonomy.

María de la Paz Adelia Peña Clavel is a the Self Access Language Centre Coordinator at the National School of Languages, Linguistics and Translation (ENALLT) in the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) as well as an English Language Advisor. She was the Academic Coordinator for the advisor-training program at UNAM and is responsible for the Teletandemproject. She received her MA in Educational Technology through (ITESM) in México and a MA in Virtual Learning Environments through the Organization of Iberoamerican States (OEI) and the University of Panama. At present, she is a PhD student at the University of Guadalajara. Her main research interests are learner-training, identity in SALC, learner autonomy and teletandem.

Carol Griffiths, AIS, New Zealand 

[Slides] [Recording]

Identity and autonomy: complexity, context and change

In recent years, the role of identity in language learning has become a “hot” issue. But what is it, exactly? This talk will begin by suggesting a definition (multifaceted, situated and dynamic) and will then present studies which look at each of these facets in relation to autonomy. Complexity will be exemplified by means of a study which investigated teachers’ perceptions of a range of individual student differences. Context will be illustrated by means of a study conducted in Turkey. And dynamism will be explored by means of a study of Chinese students studying in the UK. The talk will conclude by suggesting implications for learning and teaching and directions for further research.

Dr Carol Griffiths has been a teacher, manager and teacher trainer of ELT for many years. She has taught in many places around the world, including New Zeland, Indonesia, Japan, China, North Korea, Turkey and UK. She has presented at numerous conferences and published widely, including her latest book The Strategy Factor in Successful Language Learning: The Tornado Effect. Learner autonomy is a major ongoing interest which forms one of the chapters of a forthcoming book on Individual differences co-authored with Adem Soruc and published by Multilingual Matters. Email: carolgriffith5@gmail.com. Website: www.carolgriffiths.net

Jacqueline Tiburcio Barwis, Universidad Veracruzana, Veracruz, México 


Identity and Second Language Learning

According to the results of a pilot study it is clearly observed that a significant learning of a second language depends, above all, to re-conceptualize the classroom space as a communicative, relational and identity space, which allows an emotion-cognitive link for the student rather than the rational learning of some sociolinguistic content. Students are unique social motivated actors and with a complex identity that is modified when in the contact of the new culture-language (Pfleger, 2018). Therefore, it is necessary to incorporate into the classroom socially significant activities that allow a construction of the relational and aspirational identity.
Pfleger, S. (coord.).(2018). Lenguaje y construcción de la identidad. Una mirada desde diferentes ámbitos. México: Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.”

Master in Didactics of Social Sciences from the Universidad Veracruzana. Teacher of German in the Language Center-Veracruz of the Universidad Veracruzana since February 2009 and applicator of the German international exams ÖSD (Österreichisches Sprachdiplom). Currently coordinator of the German State Academy of the Universidad Veracruzana.

Kie Yamamoto, Kanda University of International Studies, Chiba, Japan 

[Slides] [Recording]

Advisor positionality: Reflection on my identity research

As learning advising in language learning is a unique profession, we know little about how we are understood by our advisees. Our positionality is multifaceted, and it may be powerfully influenced by our sociocultural background, language learning experience or educational philosophy. I recently conducted a longitudinal narrative study with one of my advisees in order to investigate her identity construction language learning. The study involved a series of analyses which also served to shed light on the researcher positionality as a lens to understand who I am to the learner in the advising session, and how I position myself in the context. In this presentation, I would like to share my own reflection on my researcher positionality in the narrative study and also suggest the reflexive approach to developing advising practice.

Kie Yamamoto is a learning advisor at Kanda University of International Studies. She holds an M.S.Ed from Temple University Japan, and is currently pursuing an Ed.D at the University of Bath in the UK. Her research interests are language learner identity, social learning theory, student engagement, and narrative analysis.