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Need[ edit ] Increasing globalization has created a great need for people in the workforce who can communicate in multiple languages. Common languages are used in areas such as trade, tourism, international relations, technology, media, and science. However, some countries such as IndiaSingaporeMalaysiaPakistanand the Philippines use a second official language in their governments.
According to GAOChina has recently been putting enormous importance on foreign language learning, especially the English language. History[ edit ] Ancient to medieval period[ edit ] The need to learn foreign languages is as old as human history itself. John Amos Comenius was one of many people who tried to reverse this trend.
He wrote a complete course for learning Latin, covering the entire school curriculum, culminating in his Opera Didactica Omnia, In this work, Comenius also outlined his theory of language acquisition.
He is one of the first theorists to write systematically about how languages are learned and about methods for teaching languages. He held that language acquisition must be allied with sensation and experience.
Teaching must be oral.
The schoolroom should have models of things, or else pictures of them. He published the world's first illustrated children's book, Orbis sensualium pictus. The study of Latin gradually diminished from the study of a living language to a mere subject in the school curriculum.
This decline demanded a new justification for its study. It was then claimed that the study of Latin developed intellectual ability, and the study of Latin grammar became an end in and of itself.
Advanced students continued grammar study with the addition of rhetoric. Based on the purely academic study of Latin, students of modern languages did much of the same exercises, studying grammatical rules and translating abstract sentences.
Oral work was minimal, and students were instead required to memorize grammatical rules and apply these to decode written texts in the target language. This tradition-inspired method became known as the grammar-translation method.
You may improve this articlediscuss the issue on the talk pageor create a new articleas appropriate. November Learn how and when to remove this template message Henry Sweet was a key figure in establishing the applied linguistics tradition in language teaching Innovation in foreign language teaching began in the 19th century and became very rapid in the 20th century.
It led to a number of different and sometimes conflicting methods, each claiming to be a major improvement over the previous or contemporary methods. They worked on setting language teaching principles and approaches based on linguistic and psychological theories, but they left many of the specific practical details for others to devise.
Very few students in U. Even the "reading knowledge" required for a PhD degree is comparable only to what second-year language students read, and only very few researchers who are native English speakers can read and assess information written in languages other than English.
Even a number of famous linguists are monolingual. This tends to make the research of second language acquisition emotionally charged. Older methods and approaches such as the grammar translation method and the direct method are dismissed and even ridiculed, as newer methods and approaches are invented and promoted as the only and complete solution to the problem of the high failure rates of foreign language students.
Most books on language teaching list the various methods that have been used in the past, often ending with the author's new method. These new methods are usually presented as coming only from the author's mind, as the authors generally give no credence to what was done before and do not explain how it relates to the new method.
For example, descriptive linguists[ who?
Army in World War II. However, there is significant evidence to the contrary. It is also often inferred or even stated that older methods were completely ineffective or have died out completely, though in reality even the oldest methods are still in use e.
Proponents of new methods have been so sure that their ideas are so new and so correct that they could not conceive that the older ones have enough validity to cause controversy. This was in turn caused by emphasis on new scientific advances, which has tended to blind researchers to precedents in older work.
Examples of researchers on the empiricist side are Jesperson, Palmer, and Leonard Bloomfieldwho promote mimicry and memorization with pattern drills. These methods follow from the basic empiricist position that language acquisition results from habits formed by conditioning and drilling.
In its most extreme form, language learning is seen as much the same as any other learning in any other species, human language being essentially the same as communication behaviors seen in other species.
On the theoretical side are, for example, Francois Gouin, M.
Berlitz, and Emile B. With these methods, students generate original and meaningful sentences to gain a functional knowledge of the rules of grammar.Additionally, a person’s second language can be explained as the second language in the country the speaker lives in and they may be both used in daily life.
For example, Canada has two official languages (English and French) and some citizens speak and use both of them.
Language education refers to the process and practice of acquiring a second or foreign language. It is primarily a branch of applied linguistics, however can be considered an interdisciplinary field.
The definition of second language acquisition and learning is learning and acquisition of a second language once the mother tongue or first language acquisition is established.
Second language acquisition or SLA is the process of learning other languages in addition to the native language.
English Language Teaching December, 57 A Research on Second Language Acquisition and College English Teaching Changyu Li Foreign Language Department, North China Institute of .
Adults can "get" a second language much as they learn their first language, through informal, implicit, subconscious learning. The conscious, explicit, formal linguistic knowledge of a language is a different, and often non-essential process. While education research has long suggested that studying second languages in K12 schools boosts student achievement in other content areas, the current testing emphases on mathematics and reading has placed foreign language instruction relatively low on district priority lists.