INDIVIDUAL FACTORS in the LEARNER´S DEVELOPMENT
Date: 31st October 2013
The following are taken from learner self-reports. Read, determine and explain what aspects of their learning the learners attend to and assess. See the example provided. For Example: Now that I'm in the 1st year of Bachillerato, I feel I'm not making any progress: The student is showing a lack of motivation. It is quite common that after some years of foreign language study, the student may feel that he/she is not making any progress as syllabuses at different levels tend to repeatedly cover the same grammatical areas; at times the degree of difficulty is the only thing that changes. This comment may also be related to what Selinker calls "fossilisation", that is, we reach a certain stage in our language learning when no noticeable progress is made. Note: In each of your answers, try to relate each learner´s self-report to the study materials, by identifying, for example, the type of motivation displayed by the student, his/her learning style or any learning strategies used, and any personality factors which may seem relevant, etc. You are NOT expected to offer teaching suggestions for how to deal with each student, nor to make judgemental comments on these students´learning habits and styles. The length of each answer should be similar to that of the example provided above. 1. I think one problem for me and perhaps everyone else learning a language is you have to be stimulated to learn.
The student shows lack of motivation to continue learning the foreign language; maybe because the lessons are teacher-centred and he/she feels that he/she needs the teacher to motivate them thus encouraging in the student extrinsic motivation. The student shows that he/she depends on others to learn, becoming field dependent. Maybe there are no affective strategies developed.
2. I'm only interested in grammar. I don't like pair and group work activities. It's just a waste of time. Reading short novels helped me get real daily life in English.
This student shows an analytical learning style, he/she may also apply cognitive strategies when learning. He/she shows aptitude towards learning, a grammatical sensitivity that fosters his/her intrinsic motivation. He/she wants to feel identified with and integrated into the target language, that´s why he/she finds reading short novels helpful. However, he/she does not show any interest in developing his/her interpersonal intelligence as he/she is not interested in working in group. Maybe the student is introverted.
3. Reading short novels helped me get real daily life in English.
This students shows interest in learning about the culture of the language, he is encouraged by his integrative motivation. By reading he believes that he will learn about the language. However, there might be some extrinsic motivation so that he wants to read and learn about the culture. This student tends to have a more holistic view of things. This student might be a good reader that takes advantages of different learning strategies to learn the target language, for example, making inferences from texts, using glossaries, evaluate guessing, etc. (p.65)
4. ...there are some words that appear again and again in the reading passage. I generally take them down and try to remember them.
This student applies his/her memory strategies to learn the language in his/her formal instruction. He/she also applies some analytical strategies thus reading the text carefully and working on vocabulary. His/her intrinsic motivation drives him/her toward this kind of learning.
5. I want to learn English because I want to know more about the English-speaking world.
This student is driven by his/her intrinsic, integrative motivation as he/she wants to feel identified with the target language. The students shows a personal interest in...
Bibliography: Palacios, I.; Gassó, E.; Hockly, N.; Ball, P. Individual factors in the Learner´s Development . FUNIBER.
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