Byrd Clark, Julie (2010). Making “wiggle room” in French as a second language/Français langue seconde: reconfiguring identity, language, and policy. Canadian Journal of Education. 33:2, pp. 379-406.
The focus of Julie Clark’s two-year research is on the Canadian policies on French as a Second Language within the education system, which she argues require adjustments to incorporate more space for students who have varied social backgrounds and language abilities. Focusing specifically on Italian Canadians within Toronto, Byrd Clark’s research argues that our current language education is current rigid and inflexible. In response, the author argues that language educators are should continue to actively create and establish learning spaces that are inclusive to the range of students that are entering their classrooms. This
De Costa, Peter. (2015). Reenvisioning language anxiety in the globalized classroom through
a social imaginary lens. Language Learning. 65:3, pp. 504-532.
Peter De Costa interdisciplinary study expands upon previous research on how anxiety and other emotions, influences learning a second or foreign language. Using a case study method, De Costa explores how a teenage female student in Singapore, managed her learning of English language skills, and the role that anxiety played in influencing this process. He concludes that a major influence of anxiety, often revolves around institutional and systemic pressures from school, in the way of peers and instructors, and therefore anxiety influences language learners differently. This research directly applies to the principles Second Language Acquisition theory, through its examination of language anxiety and how this influences diverse learners thoughts and processes in acquiring skills and resources while learning a second language.
Duff, Patricia. (2007). Multilingualism in Canadian schools: myths, realities and possibilities.
Canadian Journal of Applied Linguistics. 10:2., pp.149-163.
Patricia Duff’s research article analyzes and discusses the importance for incorporating additional and on-going language learning within Canadian classrooms, and highlights how learning multiple languages provides a range of mental and social benefits for children and adults. The study explores how despite the official bilingual status that Canada upholds, that the reality is that Canadian culture is expanding to incorporate a range of other languages from Asia and Europe, and how this positively influences French language learning in the classroom. Duff continues to argue that in order for second language acquisition to occur, students have to be exposed to strong level of instruction, and lessons have to be more relevant to the diverse students lives and experience. Finally, the author provides a range of activities and tools that educators can used to more deeply engage their students.
Kissau, Scott., & Miles Turnbull. (2008). Boys and French as a second language: A research
agenda for greater understanding. Canadian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 11:3 pp.
Kissau and Turnbull’s research incorporates a gendered analysis within second language acquisition theory. They examine how French as a second language in Canada, has been experiencing a decrease in male participation and interest. The authors address how despite our current shift towards multicultural education and accessibility, that second language learning education is decreasing, especially among Canadian boys. The authors conclude that this is due to a variety of reasons, including: disengagement with the language teaching strategies (specifically repetition), socio-economic accessibility and the barriers it imposes among youth, and the association of French as a feminine language. These research findings will be applied to within my classroom, by being a framework for which I approach my lessons and classroom, in making it as accessible, inviting, and relevant to the male and female students lives.
Robinson, Peter. (2001). Individual differences, cognitive abilities, aptitude complexes and
learning conditions in second language acquisition. Second Language Research, 17: 4 pp. 368-392
Through psychological and educational lenses, Peter Robinson’s research explores three areas within second language acquisition theory, each of which focus on the spectrum of abilities in learning, and how this is influenced by a range of direct and indirect processes, and how finally how this process of learning shifts among children and adults. His main argument focuses on adjusting the framework for research in language learning, cognitive abilities and instructive learning. Robinson argues for more research to be done on the individual level with a focus on the wide range of differences in abilities language learners have in varied settings. In order to do this, Robinson states that there has to be alternative research methods and testing established, in order to best meet the differentiated needs of spectrum of learners, and that this will help ground further research.
Williams, Marion., Robert Burden and Ursla Lanverns.(2002). Student perception of issues
related to motivation in learning a foreign language. British Educational Research Journal. 28:4. pp. 503-528
Williams, Burden, and Lanverns research unpacks student motivation in learning a second language, and how this process is influenced by gender, age, and stereotypical assumptions of masculinity and femininity. The study was conducted in England, and unpacks their discovery that as students typically age, from 12-15 years old, there becomes a decrease motivation to learn a second language. Using Eric Gardner’s socio-educational model as the theoretical lens which the research is focused through, the article explores how this lack of motivation, for male students in particular, is associated particularly in learning French as a second language. The authors discover that for many of these male students, there is a relationship of French as a language and femininity, an association and interpretation which, as demonstrated in the article, vastly impacts their desire to maintain and build upon their language skills. The article argues that in order to maintain student motivation, for males and females, teachers have to prioritize and emphasize the importance of learning a second language, and make it relevant to the students lives. The authors conclude that by making the learning content valuable to the students, and ensuring that they believe in their ability to learn and maintain a second language in the long term, that students will be more positively motivated to learn French.