SCAFFOLDING FROM STUDENTS IN UNIVERSITY ESL CLASSROOM

R. Ayupova

Kazan Federal University (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
The paper is devoted to studying scaffolding strategies in ESL classroom with University students. First the theoretical aspect of the notions “the zone of proximal development” and “scaffolding” in general are considered based on the works of such scholars as L. Vygotsky, H. Coffey, L.D. McKenzie, H. Widodo, S. Adi, L. Yang, K. Wilson and others. Then the problem of scaffolding from students (which has not yet been the subject of many works) is studied, as it is described in the works of contemporary methodologists. Since the purpose of the research is to scrutinize the role of scaffolding from students in University ESL classroom we give a detailed description of our experiment conducted with undergraduate students-would be English-Russian interpreters.

In the experimental group consisting of 12 students pair work was applied as one of the peer scaffolding methods. For this paper, recordings of students’ discussions when doing the pre-reading exercises and those of answers to the questions in reading exercises (prepared beforehand) during one term were taken. After thorough analysis of the recordings the conclusion is drawn about the necessity of peer scaffolding in University ESL classroom as an important complement to scaffolding from the teacher. Despite all its disadvantages, we emphasize the usefulness of scaffolding from students for both students: the ones who get this assistance acquire additional knowledge alongside with that provided by the teacher; the ones who give this scaffolding have an opportunity to try themselves in the role of a teacher, which is one of their career opportunities in the future.