Linguistics, language teaching objectives and the language learning process
Linguistics has always been taken as the authoritative frame of reference for how language is represented as a pedagogic subject, and as approaches to linguistic description have changed so accordingly have approaches to language teaching. But the purposes that determine what aspects of language are to be abstracted as relevant for linguistic description do not correspond with those of language pedagogy. What linguistics provides are ways of specifying what is to be taught as the eventual learning objective in relative disregard of the learning process, a process that it is the essential purpose of pedagogy to promote. An alternative to this customary objective driven approach, would be to focus not on acquiring competence in a particular and separate L2 but on extending the general capability for using language as a communicative resource that learners have already acquired in their L1. Such an approach effectively makes the primary objective of pedagogy the development of the learning process itself.
Keywords: linguistics, pedagogic relevance, teaching objective, learning process, competence, capability
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Published online: 17 February 2020
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