Edited by Zhisheng (Edward) Wen and Mohammad Javad Ahmadian
[Task-Based Language Teaching 13] 2019
► pp. 253–277
Chapter 11. Task-readiness and L2 task performance across proficiency levels
L2 Task performance is typically measured along the dimensions of complexity, accuracy, and fluency (CAF, or CALF when lexis is seen as an independent area). This chapter explores the relationships among CALF when topic familiarity and proficiency levels are thrown into the mix. It examined the correlational patterns of CALF in two parallel task-readiness conditions (familiar vs. unfamiliar tasks) at two different proficiency levels (intermediate vs. high). The results, in general, showed that some trade-offs occur, but only with lower to intermediate learners. This pattern attenuates at the more advanced levels, suggesting that limited attention capacity can be compensated for, and better parallel processing abilities can be achieved, as L2 proficiency grows. The findings also indicate that, while most fluency measures and accuracy measures cluster into their respective categories, the subordination-based complexity measure, the clause length-based measure, and different lexical measures appear to be distinct indices of complexity, which sometimes compete for attentional resources. This study sheds light on the nature of task performance at more advanced proficiency levels; it also unveils how complexity results vary when the construct is measured as different syntactic or lexical indexes.
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