W-Th, Sept. 19-20 (Week IV)
Key terms and concepts
an overview (of sth)
a reference list
Learning phrases rather than words
(Section 1 only)
The central challenge most of you are struggling with at this point in your development as writers of English is, "How can I arrange my words in the same way a native speaker does?" Last class we evaluated the pros and cons of one way of doing this, checking word combinations on the Internet.
However, when you think about it, native speakers do not have this problem because they did not learn words from a dictionary or from vocabulary lists. Instead, they encountered words again and again in the context of entire phrases, so they learned instinctively (from the "gut") which word combinations are normal and which are not.
So why not try learning language the way native speakers do--by learning phrases rather than individual words? Instead of learning the word "argue," why don't you learn the phrases to "argue for" or "argue about"? (These mean different things, by the way!) Instead of learning the word "spurious," why not learn the phrase "a spurious argument"?
I suggested that one way you could employ this strategy would be to copy down potentially useful phrases from your readings that you might use later in your own writing. (Of course, this needs to be conventional language; if you copied the writer's unique expressions then that would be plagiarism.)
We practiced doing this together with one article, and I gave you the optional homework assignment of copying a page's worth of phrases and showing them to me.
Choosing and researching a theory of motivation
I randomly assigned you into groups of three and asked you to rank the theories of motivation based on your order of preference. Then I collected your preferences and assigned each group one of its top choices.
Then I asked you begin researching your theory of motivation in class, first by using Internet search engines to find an article or webpage that would give you a good broad overview intended for a general reader. Then I asked you to use the Duke library website to search for academic articles relating your motivation theory to the topic of language learning.
(Sections 2 and 3 only:)
I walked around the room, checking in on groups and giving advice on how to do better, more targeted searches.
Then I defined the terms source, reference, and reference list and handed out examples of reference lists in APA format.
Xinmeng, Kelsey, Raina: Self-determination Theory
Cecilia, Tong Le, Steven: Goal-setting Theory
Charlotte, Fender, Isabella: Languages Other Than English
Vanessa, Qiu Yue, Sam: Expectancy Value Theory
Wendy, Christina, Mozhu: Goal-setting Theory
Xiaonan, Leyi, Welly: Languages Other Than English
Ryan, Wu Tong, Chunxin: Integrative Motivation
Stella, Yang, Leyu: Self-determination Theory
Vicky, Peihan, Bolin: Social Motivation
Hengran, Bella: Investment
Amy, Xiaohui, Xueyi: Goal-setting Theory
Melody, Irene, Lai Te: Self-determination Theory
Due W-Th, Sept. 26-27 (Day 9)
➤Motivation Theory Research Project: Step 2
(all parts below to be completed together with your groupmates)
1) Working with your groupmates, do some general background research into your theory, in order to get a basic understanding of what the ideas are, who came up with them, and why they are (or could be) relevant to language learning. Websites like Wikipedia could be particularly useful for this phase. Find one online source that gives a good general overview of your topic.
Note: Some of the theories (like integrative motivation) are directly related to language learning, while others (like goal-setting or self-determination) are general theories about human behavior that come out of the field of psychology. If your theory belongs to the latter category, your general overview might not touch on the subject of language learning.
2) Once you’ve gotten a basic understanding of the ideas, using the Academic Articles search on the DKU library website, find three interesting-looking academic articles that connect your theory to the subject of motivation in language learning.
Note: If you cannot find any articles that connect your theory to language learning, please let me know!
3) Print off both the overview you found and the abstracts of the 3 possible academic articles. (One copy of each is fine.) In class I will help you choose one academic article to focus on for your presentation.
4) Prepare a reference list in APA format containing the references for all four of your sources: the overview, plus the 3 academic articles. Print off the reference list (one copy per group) and bring it to class.
Note: Reference lists are complicated and full of tiny details. We will learn these in time. For the moment, don’t worry about getting it perfect. You won’t get a letter grade on the reference list; you’ll just get credit for having completed it.
Important: Section 3 will have no class on Tuesday Sept. 25 (the day after the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday). This will keep our classes “in sync” so we are doing roughly the same thing.
Instead, on Tuesday Sept. 25 I will have “all day office hours” 9am - 5pm — I’ll be available all day on campus to answer questions. If you’re having questions or problems with the research project, consider sending a groupmate to my office to ask me!
Reference lists: Useful resources
Citing Academic Journal Articles
This webpage, from the Purdue OWL, explains how to cite articles from academic journals in APA style.
It’s likely that your overview source will be from a website. This blog entry from the APA Style Blog gives a useful introduction to how to cite websites of all kinds.
Sample APA Reference List
This sample APA reference list, from the textbook Rules for Writers (7th Edition), can serve as a model.