The Role of Collaborative Tasks and Peer Interaction in the Development of Second Language Awareness

Authored by: Helen Basturkmen , Jenefer Philp

The Routledge Handbook of Language Awareness

Print publication date:  October  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138937048
eBook ISBN: 9781315676494
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter reviews perspectives on the role of collaborative activities and peer interaction in fostering language awareness. The chapter focuses in particular on the kind of “collaborative dialogue” that can occur when learners “work together to solve linguistic problems and/or co-construct language or knowledge about language” during writing, speaking, listening or reading activities (Swain, Brooks and Tocalli-Beller, 2002: 171–172) in instructed settings. It discusses possible links between this kind of dialogue and language awareness which, following Svalberg (2013), we define as explicit knowledge and conscious perception of language. The discussion is specific to oral face-to-face interaction in production activities that are primarily oriented to exchanging meanings. It does not extend to written interaction, computer-mediated communication, interaction in mechanical language practice activities or activities that do not require learner output.

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