Thursday, June 2, 2011

Quod erat demonstrandum: Why pronunciation teaching fails

Clip art: Clker
University of Wisconsin researcher Alibali is quoted in the linked summary by Science Daily as saying, ""Body movements are one of the resources we bring to cognitive processes." From our perspective, it might be better framed: ""Cognitive processes are one of the resources we bring to learning pronunciation, "multiple modalitily." What a nice example of the obvious "cognitive" bias prevalent in this field today as well-- such that the body is still thought of principally as an "add-on" or afterthought in understanding human functioning and designing instruction. Some estimates are that the body figures in to most popular models of cognitive functioning at well below the 20% level. 

The researchers speculate that it might even be a good idea to consider suppressing body engagement to stimulate other forms of disembodied learning. They need not bother . . . We have ample evidence in contemporary pronunciation teaching as to what happens when that is the common practice.

(Hat tip to Charles Adamson, founder and guiding spirit of the Japan NLP association for this link to the study summarized at He has been the source of several Science Daily summaries that I have also linked here in connection with a relevant post.)


Bill Acton said...
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Bill Acton said...

Quod erat demonstrandum = That which was to be proved is here proven, or demonstrated.

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