Utterance Fluency in the Study-Abroad Context

An Overview of Research Methodologies

Authored by: García-Amaya Lorenzo

The Routledge Handbook of Study Abroad Research and Practice

Print publication date:  June  2018
Online publication date:  June  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138192393
eBook ISBN: 9781315639970
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315639970-12

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Abstract

Research on the development of oral fluency in study-abroad (SA) contexts has expanded considerably since the pioneering work of Lennon (1990). Two central, interrelated factors may explain this phenomenon. First, from a practical perspective, each year, increasing numbers of learners opt to participate in SA programs; this has sparked an interest in researchers, teachers, students, and administrators who seek to better understand fluency development in different learning settings. Second, from a theoretical perspective, SA contexts allow researchers to capture interlanguage development as it progresses at a considerably faster rate than in other learning contexts. It is well documented that SA programs provide more opportunities for second-language (L2) use than traditional learning contexts, thereby promoting faster development of oral skills. L2 data derived from the SA context are therefore ideal for expanding on current models of L2 production.

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