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St Mary’s Academic Delivers Guest Lecture at Adam Mickiewicz University

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St Mary’s Academic Delivers Guest Lecture at Adam Mickiewicz University

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Pauline Foster, Professor of Applied Linguistics at St Mary’s University, Twickenham has recently delivered a guest lecture at the faculty of Applied English and Language Teaching at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. The invitation followed a plenary paper delivered by Prof Foster in 2012 at an International Language Teaching Conference in Poland, which was later developed into a chapter in Language Skills: Traditions, Transitions and Ways Forward (Trepczynska, M (ed. 2014)). The updated version of this lecture, entitled Interactive foreign language classrooms: what is the place of teacher-talk? discussed the hypothesis that meaningful interaction is supportive of, even central to, development in foreign languages. It showed how the notion has been widely applied to language classrooms in the past 30 years, and concluded that non-interactive classroom practices might have been unfairly devalued, even demonised, as a result. Drawing on current prescriptions of ‘Best Practice’ in language classrooms, Prof Foster observed that it is unjustified to characterise language learners who are not actively interacting as not actually learning, and made the case that episodes of ‘teacher talk’ or silent study can also yield positive learning outcomes.
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