Implementing a Literacy-Oriented Curriculum in the Basic Foreign Language Sequence: Insights from Stakeholders on Program Development, Instructional Materials, and Graduate Student Professional Learning
AuthorHashemi, Tara Parissa
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction, presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
EmbargoDissertation not available (per author's request)
AbstractOver the past decade, U.S collegiate foreign language (FL) education has been experiencing a climate change. Forced to demonstrate increased relevance in the midst of a “crisis” where enrollments continue to drop, especially in advanced courses (Paesani, Allen, & Dupuy, 2015), FL programs have been called on to adopt new ways of thinking, learning, and experiencing FL language education in a globalized world (Kramsch, 2014, p. 297) and move beyond the teaching of vocabulary lists and verb conjugations in isolation and the four skills as separate linguistics and cognitive processes within a functional perspective. The end of the 20th century saw a call from scholars in the field of foreign language teaching to adopt a pedagogical framework that more adequately addressed the wide range of modes, discourse forms, meanings and histories that characterize late modern, digitally networked societies and which learners will encounter in a new language (see Kramsch 1993, New London Group, 1996; Byrnes, 1998; Kern, 2000; Swaffar & Arens, 2005). Following that trend and after the attacks of 9/11, the MLA Ad Hoc Committee on Foreign Languages made an opportunistic move by drafting a report to reaffirm the need for FL departments to implement important changes at the curricular level. Although published over a decade ago, the ripple effects of the 2007 MLA report on foreign language programs are still strong. A testament to this, are the 132nd MLA Annual Convention (2017) as well as the second issue of the 2018 ADFL Bulletin which both dedicated an important part of their presented and published papers to the assessment of the report’s influence. Responses to the Report showed a “growing consensus about the importance of language instruction, about the inadequacy of American students' language skills, and a willingness to consider new models.” (Jaschilk, 2007, p. 1). Yet, the Report failed to address ways in which to implement its recommendations of large-scale changes necessary to develop integrated, text-based curricula or which pedagogical approaches might facilitate implementing such curricula (Allen and Paesani 2010). Several scholars (e.g.: Allen & Paesani, 2010; Kern, 2000; Paesani, Allen, & Dupuy, 2015; Swaffar & Arens, 2005) foregrounded the multiliteracies framework and the concept of literacy (New London Group, 1996) as a possible way forward to unifying the 4-year undergraduate FL curriculum and anchoring professional development opportunities for graduate student teachers. This dissertation sought to get insights from stakeholders on program development and instructional materials necessary to the implementation of a literacy-oriented curriculum in the basic foreign language sequence. It also explores the content and forms graduate student teacher professional learning take in such programs which have recently undergone curricular reform to better align with the recommendations made by the MLA Report (2007) and their impact.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Second Language Acquisition & Teaching