Understanding the role of the first language (L1) in instructed second language acquisition (ISLA): Effects of using a principled approach to L1 in the beginner foreign language classroom







This study investigated whether second language (L2) classroom instruction that incorporates a principled approach into the use of the first language (L1) by students and instructors has an effect on beginning learners’ development of L2 speaking and writing proficiency, compared to L2-only instruction, over the course of one semester. Participants were 54 students of Spanish enrolled in six sections of a university-level Elementary Spanish course. The six intact classes, exposed to the same task-based curriculum, were randomly assigned to two experimental groups (–L1 and +L1). For the –L1 group, instruction and interaction were conducted exclusively in the L2, whereas instruction and interaction in the +L1 group included specific uses of the L1. A pretest–posttest design was used to measure change in speaking and writing proficiency. Effects were assessed using the STAMP 4 test, a standardized measure of proficiency. Results indicated that courses under both conditions promoted improvements in speaking and writing. However, students in the +L1 condition improved significantly more than those in the control –L1 group, both in speaking and writing. This points to a potentially more important role for the L1 in the development of an L2. Pedagogical implications are discussed, and directions for further research are offered.

Deja un comentario

Plain text

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <div> <br> <p>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.