31 SES 05 B, Approaches Towards Learning English
Research on Third Language Acquisition (TLA) overcame considerable changes and debates over the last decade. Being a young substance in the academic sense, it has proven to be studied independently from bilingualism and second language acquisition (SLA) as a separate field (Jessner, 2008:16). However, not only students are involved in the process of learning English as a third language, but also the demand of qualified professionals teaching content through the language has appeared. In this respect, Nazarbayev Intellectual school of physics-maths in Astana has launched a project involving the assistance of international teachers, helping to local teachers to acquire a certain level of English proficiency.
The context of this small-scale research paper is somewhat unique, as being a post Soviet country, exposed to simultaneous bilingualism of Kazakh and Russian languages. International teachers are active members of educational process at NIS PhM, representing co-teachers in implementation of Integrated Educational Program, thus the choice of English language facilitation is not random, but a considerate initiative and support.
The role of international teachers is to concentrate and collaborate on a group of two local subject teachers, assisting them in language learning with two-three times session meetings a week.
In present paper the following research questions will be addressed:
RQ1: To what extent international teachers would support the local ones in third language acquisition?
RQ2: What will be the challenges of a language exposure considering a different level of language partners?
The factor of linguistic distance plays an important role in TLA, and it has been widely discussed by authors like – Ahukanna, Lund and Gentile (1981), Cenoz (2001), De Angelis and Selinker (2001), Singleton (1987) and others.
The same authors have also indicated psychotypological distance as a defining part in conditioning the first language (L1) and the second language (L2) patterns of transfer (Kellerman (1983) proposed learners’ perception of cross-linguistic relatedness). However, other factors also played an essential role in TLA. They are - recency, amount of experience in the third language (L3), metalinguistic awareness, age, the number of acquired languages, and order of learning them. All of them are closely connected and may be interacted with language distance (Cawalho and Bacelar da Silva, 2006:186).
Even though a plentiful number of investigations have been conducted recently, many researchers agree that more empirical studies should be done to re-investigate or confirm major claims in this area (e.g. Jessner, 2008; Cenoz and Genesee, 1998). Furthermore, these findings are related to the European languages context, and the present work aims at confirming or contradicting the existing claims in specific context of Kazakhstan, since only Russian and English are the languages of Indo-European scope, whereas Kazakh is a language of Turkic family origin.
Taking everything into consideration, it is vital to investigate certain factors of readiness to acquire and pursue adequate language learning setting in the specific context of Kazakhstani teachers.
All the participants of this study are expected to have experience of both Kazakh and Russian as languages of instruction and English as their third language. The study of effective learning of the third language acquisition in Kazakhstani context will contribute to the academic field as not much research has been done in this area. Researchers in TLA may have a particular interest in this study, as it reflects the model of acquisition different from that has been investigated before. This study will contribute to the wider field of not only Kazakhstani Intellectual schools (since trilingual policy is implemented around the whole country), but also will relate to those contexts where exposure to the English language is essential for teaching content through the means of L3.
Cenoz, J. (2001). The effect of linguistic distance, L2 status, and age on cross linguistic influence in third language acquisition. In J. Cenoz, 8. Hufeisen, & U. Jessner (Eds.), Cross-linguistic influence in third language acquisition: Psycholinguistic perspectives Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters Ltd. Cohen, L., Manion, L. & Morrison, K. (2007) Research Methods in Education. (6th ed.) London: Routledge. Denscombe, M. (2010) The good research guide for small-scale social research projects Maidenhead : McGraw-Hill Open University Press 4th ed. Fraenkel, J. R. 1932- Wallen, N. E. (2008) How to design and evaluate research in education Boston, Mass. ; London : McGraw-Hill Higher Education 7th ed. Foucault (1972) In Fraenkel, J. R. 1932- Wallen, N. E. (2008) How to design and evaluate research in education Boston, Mass. ; London : McGraw-Hill Higher Education 7th ed. Krathwohl, R. D. (1998) Methods of Educational and Social Science Research. An Integrated Approach, 2nd edition. New York: Longman Kellerman, E. (1983). Now you see it, now you don’t. In S. Gass & L. Selinker (Eds.), Language transfer in language learning Rowley, MA: Newbury House. Cawalho, A. M., Bacelar da Silva, A. J. (2006) Cross-Linguistic Influence in Third Language Acquisition: The Case of Spanish-English Bilinguals’ of Portuguese Foreign Language Annals, VOL. 39, NO. 2 Nazarbayev, N (2007) New Kazakhstan in the New World [online]. Annual Address to the People of Kazakhstan. Available from: http:// www.akorda.kz. Tashakkori, A., Creswell, J. W. (2007) Editorial: The New Era of Mixed Methods Journal of Mixed Methods Res 1: 3-7 Tashakkori, A., Teddlie, C. (1998) Mixed Methodology: Combining qualitative and quantitative approaches. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, p. 41 Conception for Student Achievements Criteria-Based Assessment System Implementation in Autonomous Educational Organization “Nazarbayev Intellectual Schools”. 2012. Retrieved from http://www.nis.edu.kz/en/programs/criter-eval/leg-doc/
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