MA Public Opinion and Political Behaviour
MA Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) options

Year 1, Component 06

LG429-7-AU or LG540-7-AU or LG541-7-AU
Topics in the Psychology of Language Learning and Teaching

Is learning all about cognitive processes? What is the role of psychological factors in successful language learning and teaching? Why do foreign language teachers need to know about their learners?

Teaching Younger Learners

This module will introduce students to the fundamentals of Teaching English to Young Learners, referring to children and adolescents. You’ll become familiar with theories surrounding language acquisition among children and the different aspects of their psychology in instructed classroom settings. You will also consider how young learners' language skills could be assessed and tested.

Language Learning Across the Lifespan

We will look at theories of language learning that broadly take a usage-based perspective and compare and contrast these with more traditional formalist approaches in order to highlight changes and new points of emphasis in current theorising in the field. We will consider the role of explicit (conscious) and implicit (non-conscious) knowledge and processes in additional language learning and how these interact with characteristics of the individual learner, the learning context, and the linguistic input that constitutes the learning target. Importantly, we will look at the influence of these factors across the lifespan to pinpoint if and how language development differs in children, younger adults and older adults. We will capture current research trends that move beyond the traditional sample population of educated young adults and include hitherto under-researched groups such as third-age learners and low-educated learners.

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