About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 5607-5617
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-615-3324-4
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2011
Location: Madrid, Spain

EMPOWERING FOREIGN LANGUAGE LEARNERS: STEPS TO UNLOCK LIMITING BELIEFS

L. Landolfi

Università degli Studi di Napoli L'Orientale (ITALY)
The comparison of teaching approaches from the fifties to the present educational scenario offers a clear idea of how significant a transformation language teachers (and teachers, in general) have undergone. The evolutionary process has affected both teachers and students and for some reasons, which will be looked at during the paper presentation, students seem to have been favored.

Within this frame, the present paper focuses on today's education as it is seen by first-year language students at university and investigates: what students are certain of (their sets of beliefs), prefer and hope (their wishful-thinking and desiderata mind-field), expect to receive in class (presupposition pyramids),and how these aspects have an impact and impinge on their emotional worlds, limiting or enhancing their pedagogical evolution and acquisitional paths.

The data for the present analysis comes from the P.Æ.C.E. Corpus, which contains authentic class-driven data that has been collected from 2005 to 2010 at the University of Naples “L’Orientale” and electronically systematized following the procedures proper to corpora linguistics. The corpus gives voices to more than 500 students of English who, via anonymously written texts, volunteered to describe their learning states at the beginning of their first-year course and after a guided visualization using Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) modalities (Dilts 2001).

In itinere qualitative analyses of the corpus have so far: 1) shown that a good number of students do come to university with a vision of who they want to be, how they want to achieve their goals and for which reason; 2) revealed the significant impact NLP activities trigger; 3)allowed a series of unobtrusive observations about the emotional states and attitudinal modalities first-year students bring to class and need to cope with (Landolfi 2009), and 4) led to revise aspects of teaching modalities, content articulation, and course implementation .

Via the presentation of authentic corpus-taken examples, it will be illustrated that the majority of students understands the importance of knowing English and approaches learning with promising visions but with: a) inefficacious time frames, b) minimal capacities to organize studying modalities, c) poor self-esteem, d) flickering motivations, e) many and varied types of fears, and f) an inaccurate awareness of personal competence levels. Indeed, students expect to “know English” and become both fluent and accurate by the end of a fifty-hour course in spite of the fact that most of them arrive at university with a competence level below the nationally accepted B1 and present one or more of the features listed from a to f.

Although there seems to be no specific magic formula to transform students with limited competence, low self-esteem, and poor motivation into students with confidence, self-motivation, and willingness to achieve their goals the implementation of an affective-geared approach integrated with functional state-changing NLP activities has proven to greatly favor the transformation from ugly ducklings into swans.

References:
Dilts, R. 2003. From Coach to Awakener, Meta Publications, Capitola, CA.
Landolfi, L. 2009. “Emotions and visualizations: where heart and mind intermingle” In Azadeh Shafaei- Mehran Nejati (eds.) Annals of language and Learning: Proceedings of the 2009 International Online Language Conference (IOLC 2009). Universal-Publishers Boca Raton, FL.USA. pp. 192-208.
@InProceedings{LANDOLFI2011EMP,
author = {Landolfi, L.},
title = {EMPOWERING FOREIGN LANGUAGE LEARNERS: STEPS TO UNLOCK LIMITING BELIEFS},
series = {4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-3324-4},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {5607-5617}}
TY - CONF
AU - L. Landolfi
TI - EMPOWERING FOREIGN LANGUAGE LEARNERS: STEPS TO UNLOCK LIMITING BELIEFS
SN - 978-84-615-3324-4/2340-1095
PY - 2011
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2011
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 4th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2011 Proceedings
SP - 5607
EP - 5617
ER -
L. Landolfi (2011) EMPOWERING FOREIGN LANGUAGE LEARNERS: STEPS TO UNLOCK LIMITING BELIEFS, ICERI2011 Proceedings, pp. 5607-5617.
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