Primary socialization and cultural factors in second language learning: wending our way through semi-charted territory

Mangubhai, Francis (1997) Primary socialization and cultural factors in second language learning: wending our way through semi-charted territory. Australian Review of Applied Linguistics, S (14). pp. 23-54. ISSN 0817-9514

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Differences in ways in which students from non-western backgrounds approach the task of second language learning, particularly ESL/EFL, have been discussed by a number of writers: Osterloh (1980), Maley (1983, 1984), Matalene (1985), Ramirez (1986), Bassino (1986), Reid (1987), Hinds (1987), Willett (1987), Riley (1988), Tinkham (1989), Burnaby and Yilin (1989), Kumaravadivelu (1991), Scollon (1991), Scollon and Wong-Scollon (1991), Oxford, Hollaway and Horton-Murillo (1992), and Xia Wang (1994). Discussions in literature on learning generally have dealt with the thinking and/or problem-solving processes of non-western and pre-literate cultures (Gladwin, 1964; Cole and Bruner, 1971; Scribner, 1979), the participant structures in societies and in schools (Erikson and Mohatt, 1982; Jordan, 1995; Lipka, 1991), the disjuncture for some between the world of primary socialization and the world of schooling (Phelan, David and Hanh, 1991; Heath, 1982; Au and Jordan, 1981; Au, 1993).
This paper explores the relationships between certain cultural factors related to language use, and attitudes at both micro (classroom) and macro (society) levels and their possible impact upon ESL learning. Although the primary focus is on ESL learning, the discussion of attitudes at the macrolevel inevitably encompasses academic learning generally. Pedagogical implications will be exemplified with cases of successful incorporation of the understandings and behaviors that learners bring with them to classroom programs and practices. It will also describe how these understandings can be put into effect in the provision of programs that enhance students' chances of academic success. A research agenda is also suggested in order to answer questions of the type that Riley (1988, p. 29) has posed, whether '[cultural variation] is ... important enough to merit taking consideration, or should we bypass it and go straight on to individual variation?'

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Deposited with permission of publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 00:30
Last Modified: 12 Sep 2013 06:12
Uncontrolled Keywords: second language learning; primary socialization; cultural factors; attitudes; english as a second language; ESL
Fields of Research : 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2003 Language Studies > 200303 English as a Second Language
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education

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