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LINGUIST List 20.1013

Sun Mar 22 2009

Diss: Applied Ling/Lang Acq: Surkova: 'Creativity in Target ...'

Editor for this issue: Evelyn Richter <evelynlinguistlist.org>


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        1.    Irina Surkova, Creativity in Target Language Use/Kreativitāte mērķvalodas lietojumā

Message 1: Creativity in Target Language Use/Kreativitāte mērķvalodas lietojumā
Date: 21-Mar-2009
From: Irina Surkova <sur_koinbox.lv>
Subject: Creativity in Target Language Use/Kreativitāte mērķvalodas lietojumā
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Institution: University of Latvia
Program: Applied Linguistics
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2008

Author: Irina Surkova

Dissertation Title: Creativity in Target Language Use/Kreativitāte mērķvalodas lietojumā

Dissertation URL: http://luis.lanet.lv/pls/pub/luj.fprnt?l=1&fn=F51447/Irina+Surkova+2008.pdf

Linguistic Field(s): Applied Linguistics
                            Language Acquisition

Dissertation Director:
Ingrīda Kramiņa

Dissertation Abstract:

Research on creativity in TLS 1) focuses on the issues of learners'
cognitive creativity in relation to the language learning process, which
involves rather insights of pedagogy or psychology than linguistics, 2)
investigates various kinds of language play in L1. This dissertation
explores creativity in TL use from the linguistic point of view.

Part one of this study presents a systemic and structural analysis of the
language as a creative phenomenon by applying the methodology of creativity
to the linguistic concepts. The author develops the conceptual apparatus
and the theoretical definition of verbal creativity in TL use and TLS, as
well as its parametres (characteristics, levels, and layers), its place in
linguistics and TLS, the factors enhancing and blocking verbal creativity.
Hence the verbal creative aspect as an independent variable within the
system of communicative competence and performance is elaborated. The
criteria for the measurement and assessment of verbal creativity in the
final oral and written TL products are worked out. A comprehensive analysis
of the models of creativity in the TL acquisition research accumulated
throughout their history and in creativity research, their description,
classification and application for TLS is conducted.

Part two of this study presents the results of the empirical study of
creativity in TL use and in TLS: 1) a statistical measurement and a
descriptive-comparative analysis of TL - L1 learners' written and oral
samples in order to identify the creative aspect in TL use, its elements,
characteristics, types and levels of creativity in the TL, 2) a
questionnaire of TL learners' and teachers' beliefs on creativity within
L1, the TL, in TLS, and in creative TL use in order to identify the sources
of TL performance, 3) TL course book analysis in order to predict some of
the causes of TL creative or reproductive use.

The findings demonstrate that TL use cannot be completely understood
employing only standard referential definitions, but rather creative ones.
The results of the analysis of learners' written and oral samples show that
creativity (i.e. fluency) in TL users' oral and written speech generally
develops in the linguistic form at the reproductive level. The scores of
the main criterion of creativity, originality, are rather low
(stimulative-productive level). Moreover, students seem to be unaware of
the creative mechanisms of the TL.

The results of the questionnaire show that the main difference in the use
of L1 and the TL lies in the creativity aspect, i.e. knowledge of TL
linguistic and communicative creativity and its creative use within the TL.
The linguistic aspect of TL creativity and creative TL use needs more
attention in the TL classroom. The methodology of teaching verbal
creativity to TL users is to be developed.

The results of the TL course book analysis show that activities in the
analyzed course books predominantly develop TL students' reproductive
skills, concentrating rather on controlled than creative activities. The
rate of creative activities, if compared with other activities, is very
low. Creative language skills and competence are not taught systematically
and systemically. The results have implications for creativity research in
linguistics and applied linguistics, SLA research and TLS, usage-based
materials design, language assessment and measurement with respect to the
creativity component of language competence and performance.



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