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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: Aspects of working memory in L2 learning
Author: Alan Juffs
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Author: Michael Harrington
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Psycholinguistics
Abstract: This article reviews research on working memory (WM) and its use in second language (L2) acquisition research. Recent developments in the model and issues surrounding the operationalization of the construct itself are presented, followed by a discussion of various methods of measuring WM. These methods include word and digit span tasks, reading, listening and speaking span tasks. We next outline the role proposed for WM in explaining individual differences in L2 learning processes and outcomes, including sentence processing, reading, speaking, lexical development and general proficiency. Key findings are that WM is not a unitary construct and that its role varies depending on the age of the L2 learners, the task and the linguistic domain. Some tests of WM may in fact be tests of differences in ability to attend to aspects of the L2. Future research will focus on matching tests of WM more closely with linguistic tasks and using more standardized, replicable measures of WM in new areas including writing in non-alphabetic scripts, instructional interventions and cognitive neuropsychology.


This article appears IN Language Teaching Vol. 44, Issue 2.

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