ARCHIVE Spring 2018 Brown Bags

January 11
Posters from SLS 730: Second Language Materials Evaluation, Selection, Adaptation, & Development

Presenters: Carrie Bach, Hye Young Jung, and Mitsuiko Suzuki, PhD in SLS Students; and
Rachel Hughes, Raquel Reinagel, and Kumi Sweely, MA in SLS Students, UH-Mānoa

This Brown Bag will showcase graduate students’ work from the course SLS 730: Second Language Materials Evaluation, Selection, Adaptation, & Development, taught by Professor Richard Day this past Fall, 2017. The format of this meeting will begin with a brief description of the seminar course, followed by quick introductions of the projects by the students. For the main segment of the Brown Bag, attendees will be invited to view the project posters and to discuss questions and comments with the presenters.

January 18
English Education in South Korea

Presenters: Choi Jeong-eun, Dong Su-hang, Hwang Su-bin, Jin Hyae-joo, Kim Yu-jeong, Lee Ye-jin, Lim Ye-young, Shin Yoo-jeong, Yoo Eun-ji, and Yoon Won-kyung

Visiting Students from the BA Program in TESL, Sookmyung Women’s University

How is English taught in South Korea? How has English education evolved there? And what new changes are in the works? The ten students listed above, undergraduate students majoring in TESL at Sookmyung Women’s University who are visiting SLS for one week, will discuss these questions and more.

This talk may be of particular interest to SLS majors and graduate students who want to teach English in Korea after finishing their degrees, or who have taught in Korea.

January 25
Introducing the (Small) UHM Multilingual/Multicultural Strategic Initiative: Topic for Discussion and Dialogue

Presenter: Graham Crookes, Professor of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

A small interdepartmental project initiated by SLS, EALL, and CoE faculty was recently approved by the UHM administration. Its intent is, among other things, to increase the multilingual and multicultural dimension of UHM. The presenter will introduce the project (a) in the context of our roles in a public university (so as to make the matter of perhaps broad relevance), and (b) with the intention of fostering some interest in how the matter might be promoted and extended in the near future. The goal of this session is to raise departmental awareness of a project in its beginning stages, and invite some discussion. After a brief and informal presentation, key faculty members will engage the audience in exploring possible directions for the initiative.

February 1
Modeling the perceived value of compulsory English language education: A replication

Presenter: Amy Marquardt, MA in SLS Student, UH-Mānoa

The current paper reports on an approximate replication study of Rivers’ 2012 article on modeling the perceived value of compulsory undergraduate English classes in Japan. Both studies analyze similar linguistic tensions seen in countries where compulsory English classes are mandated and the replication study highlights these tensions in the regional context of Catalonia, Spain. This study uses Rivers’ mixed methods approach to identify the abstract concepts of value and investment by coding long-answer textual responses into themes, creating and administering a survey from these themes, and modeling the survey responses into a suitable structural equation model.

February 8
Two Talks

Presenter 1: Wenyi Ling, PhD Candidate, Department of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

The Perception, Processing and Learning of Mandarin Tone by Second Language Speakers

The goal of this project is to investigate how adult second language learners of Mandarin perceive tone variations, process tones in spoken word recognition and learn tones in different training conditions, using the categorical perception tasks and visual-world eye-tracking paradigm. Since experiment 3 is still under design, I am going to present my first two experiments.

Presenter 2: Priscila Leal, PhD Candidate, Department of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

How do English language teachers develop critical consciousness?

Under what circumstances and to what extent, and caused by what factors and experiences, do English language teachers come to have an understanding of their potential role in fostering social justice (i.e., critical consciousness)? How can language teacher education programs support future language teachers to be committed to strengthening their students’ critical consciousness? As I continue to investigate this phenomenon with several groups of teachers, both less experienced and more, I share some of the highlights from surveys and interviews of this work in progress.

February 15
Two Talks

Presenter 1: Gaiyang Wang, Fulbright Visiting Research Scholar, Xi’an International Studies University, China

Cultivate Contextual Lexical Inferencing Competence in L2

This research is a practice of lexical pragmatics in L2 vocabulary pedagogy. The primary is to determine whether pedagogic intervention targeted at raising Chinese EFL learners’ awareness of the pragmatic nature of contextual lexical meaning can enhance their contextual lexical inferencing competence (i.e. CLIC) which is crucial for their vocabulary development, reading ability improvement and greater learning autonomy in reading. Attempts were made to tackle the following two research questions.
1. Does pedagogical intervention targeted at raising L2 learners’ awareness of the pragmatic nature of lexical meanings help to develop their CLIC?
2. Can improved L2 learners’ CLIC also result in more efficient vocabulary acquisition, better reading ability, and higher degree of learner autonomy in reading?
To answer the two research questions, we first established a CLIC conceptual model and a CLIC instruction model. And then, an empirical test of the CLIC instructional model was conducted to check the feasibility of the conceptual model.
From the results of the investigation, it is concluded that while the CLIC-based linguistic abilities will grow with learners’ general L2 proficiency, the power of CLIC instruction mainly lies in its effectiveness in enhancing learners’ self-confidence in making lexical inferences, which is crucial for the development of learner autonomy in reading since it will help to speed up their progress from intermediate level to advanced level of L2 learning.

Presenter 2: Jayson Parba, PhD Candidate, Department of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

“It feels good to have a voice”: Negotiating Power in the Filipino Language Classrooms

In this talk, I will share how I implemented critical language pedagogy (CLP) in two upper intermediate Filipino language courses at a university in Hawaiʻi in order to examine how it looks in practice. Though CLP has been explored in ESL and EFL contexts, the extant literature is bereft of discussions of how critically-oriented teachers engage in critical pedagogy in the heritage language (HL) and languages other than English (LOTE) contexts, except perhaps in Spanish. Using teacher research, this dissertation work (in progress) aims to address this gap in the literature and directly responds to appeals for concrete examples of how to negotiate syllabus contents, assessment, and classroom language policy in linguistically diverse HL/LOTE classrooms.

February 22
Online Extensive Reading in EAP Courses

Presenters: Richard R. Day, Professor of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa; and Jing Zhou, PhD Candidate, Department of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

Extensive reading (ER) has been shown to be an effective approach in helping second language (L2) students learn to read the target language. Of particular interest is how L2 learners in an English for Academic Purposes (EAP) course that included ER would react to ER since ER involves L2 learners reading easy, interesting books that they select themselves. We examined the reactions of forty-one EAP university students to ER. We used Xreading, an online, virtual library with hundreds of graded readers. We gathered both quantitative and qualitative data to determine the extent to which the Xreading program affected the learners’ attitudes toward reading in English, their academic reading, and English proficiency in general.

March 1
Measuring Lexical Richness: A Hands-on Workshop

Presenter: Kristopher Kyle, Assistant Professor of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

In this talk, I will briefly introduce the construct of lexical richness and will highlight some common ways in which it can be measured. I will then conduct a hands-on workshop wherein we will analyze a learner corpus using the Tool for the Automatic Analysis of Lexical Sophistication (TAALES; Kyle & Crossley, 2015) and then investigate the relationship between indices of lexical richness and holistic scores of writing quality. Participants are encouraged to bring laptop computers to this talk so that they can follow along as I explain the different steps for the analysis. Data will be provided.

March 8
Two Talks

Presenter 1: Meryl Siegal, SLS Visiting Colleague, Laney College

Visiting Colleague Talk: “It’s not brain surgery for Christ sakes!”: A look at the college level transfer course at the community college

About 20 years ago, Hawai‘i’s community colleges reformed their English departments. This kind of reform, “evidence-based,” is occurring in Californian community colleges and currently called acceleration. I have been interviewing teachers to understand teachers’ understanding of freshman composition and how they prepare students to transfer to a 4-year institute of higher learning. This presentation discusses the importance of community colleges and the understanding of language and learning in community colleges.

Presenter 2: Chi Phung, Fulbright Vietnamese TA, Department of Indo-Pacific Languages and Literatures (IPLL)

Fulbright TA Talk: Learner agency and academic achievements in speaking skills at the tertiary level

Learner agency, which is defined as “the socio-culturally mediated capacity to act” (Ahearn, 2001, p. 4) is argued to lay foundation for autonomy’s development and also self-regulation learning, or strategic learning. This study, which employed qualitative case study method, is an insightful investigation into the exercise of learner agency of four second-year English majors who are classified as successful and less successful learners. This understanding has elucidated how those learners exercise their agency differently to take ownership of their learning. Findings revealed that the exercise of successful learners’ agency experienced continual development and adaptation to changes in the social context whereas less successful learners’ agency tended to be fluid and changeable. The study is valuable in shedding light on learners’ inner voice and contributing to the call of considering a learner as a holistic human being with learning histories, unique goals and ambitions, and in interaction with the social context. This understanding can guide teachers and educators to effectively facilitate the strong exercise of learner agency in order to foster learner autonomy and strategic learning.

March 15
AAAL/TESOL Practice Talks

Talk 1 Presenters: Betsy Gilliland, Associate Professor of Second Language Studies & Priscila Leal, PhD Candidate in Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

“I Wanna Know What You’re Gonna Do to Help Them”: Adolescent Micronesian Girls Representing Conflicting Worldviews in Personal Writing

We report on a community-based workshop in Hawai‘i teaching Micronesian girls about writing a scholarship statement of purpose. Critical sociocultural theory underlies the workshop design and analysis. Data analysis focused on how the girls characterize their current lives, past histories, and future aspirations in their oral and written texts.

Talk 2 Presenter: Junichi Yagi, PhD Student in Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

Enacting Culture Outside of the Classroom: A Case of Microgenetic Learning in Japanese as a Foreign Language

Aligning with CA work on ‘language learning in the wild’, this study illustrates how enactment as a method of explaining leads to microgenetic learning. The analysis of lunch talk among L1-L2 Japanese speakers reveals how the participants accomplish the shared understanding of a word: ‘burikko’ through enactment.

Talk 3 Presenter: Kristin Rock, PhD Student in Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

English Language Learner Dialogue Journals: A Bridge to More Complex Writing

Dialogue journals provide a unique opportunity for teachers and students to engage in meaningful communication in English. This presentation describes research analyzing the lexical and syntactic complexity of English language learners’ journal writing over time and discusses practical suggestions for incorporating this engaging literacy activity in the classroom.

March 22
Developing Online Extensive Reading and Listening Materials

Presenter: Raquel Reinagel, MA Student in Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa

From failed app to website-based online/mobile materials, this presentation explains how graded readers and podcasts were developed with English-medium university students in mind. This project originally began as a single graded reader intended for an app, but was instead turned into multiple graded readers and a podcast project. Designed to increase reading and listening fluency and provide free, fun English language materials, the products resulted from the work of many MA students from the Department of Second Language Studies. Possible next steps for these materials will also be discussed.

March 29
Spring Break – No Brown Bag

April 5
Tasks in Technology-Mediated Contexts: Plenary Talk from TBLT 2017 Conference

Presenter: Marta González-Lloret, Professor of Spanish & Portuguese, Languages and Literatures of Europe and the Americas, UH-Mānoa

This presentation defines what technology-mediated tasks are and how they fit within principles of TBLT/L. It explores challenges of developing and integrating technology-mediated tasks in a curriculum and what research is being done to bridge those challenges. A few existing examples of technology-mediated TBLT curricula will be presented before focusing on current research on technologies and tasks. Since the inclusion of technology in an environment is never neutral, it is important to explore how technology affects the task and what it means for principles of TBLT/L. To address this, suggestions will be offered on how research can be expanded to inform theories and practices of TBLT/L. Finally, a few questions and challenges for technology-mediated TBLT will be offered to help move the field forward.

April 12
Critical and Multimodal Literacies: Implications from EFL Learners

Presenter: Shin-ying Huang, Associate Professor, Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, National Taiwan University

This presentation reports on a study that explored the ways in which EFL learners, through a multimodal approach, reflected on the politics of English as it relates to race, class, and gender. Through a detailed examination of two students’ ensembles, it was found that thinking multimodally rather than only linguistically may contribute to the consideration of an issue from a less dominant point of view, leading to critical reflection. In addition, multimodal compositions may allow learners to express their critical engagement with an issue in ways that the linguistic mode might restrict. The pedagogical implications of these findings will also be discussed using examples from the two students’ multimodal works.

April 19
2017 English Language Placement Test Revision Project

James Dean Brown, Professor of Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa
Huy Phung, PhD Student in Second Language Studies, UH-Mānoa
Kenton Harsch, Director, English Language Institute, UH-Mānoa
Priscilla Faucette, Associate Director, English Language Institute, UH-Mānoa

This Brown Bag will present and explain the results of the 2016–2017 ELIPT revision project. The goal of this project was to use Classical Test Theory and Rasch analyses to improve all of the subtests of the ELIPT to make it a better placement battery.