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Leistung

Leistungstyp Forschungsprojekt (+)
 
Titel The Benefits of Mutual Teaching Placements between Austria and the UK
 
Untertitel A project shining light on the benefits of a mutual trainee teacher exchange programme organised by the Private University of Education Linz and its partners in York and Edinburgh.
 
Beschreibung This project involves mutual international teaching placements, which PHDL have been organising and running with our partners and affiliated schools in the UK (York/Edinburgh) and Austria (Linz/Bad Goisern) since 2007. Basically, it is an immersion programme for primary and secondary trainees alike and was designed to benefit their professional development, not only in terms of their teaching capacity, but also as regards their second language proficiency and cross-cultural awareness. In order to place the project on a solid academic footing, a questionnaire has been designed to both evaluate the benefits of these mutual teaching placements and to see how well immersed the trainees have been in the target culture. The research design seeks to cover a wide spectrum of intercultural, linguistic and didactic issues revolving around 5 selected aspects warranting further research, notably language proficiency, cultural studies, didactics and methodology, school systems and efficiency of organisation. The contents of the questionnaire are based on the relevant literature, state-of-the-art didactics and methodology and recent L1/L2 acquisition theories (Brown and Larson-Hall, 2014. Cook and Singleton, 2014. Legutke et al., 2012. Lightbown and Spada, 2013. Mackey, 2012. Thomas, 2001. Wiesinger, 2016). Strictly speaking, there are two questionnaires – one aimed at UK trainees, the incoming students, and the other targeting Austrian trainees. The respective questionnaires, predominantly based on multiple-choice questions, are available on the PHDL Moodle platform and any student participating in the project is required to complete the questionnaire twice – before and after their stint abroad. In the meantime, quite a number of students have joined this research project, actively analysing the data for their own bachelor’s and master’s theses - with their very own scope of research, of course - thus not only benefitting their own academic careers but also contributing to the project as a whole. For example, some very recent and intriguing findings have been that a) Austrian teachers primarily rely on their coursebooks while UK teachers very often do without them (Schauer, 2017). b) the ‘grammar-translation method’, as a teaching style, is still firmly entrenched and extremely popular with SL teachers across the board (Daborer, 2018. Grabner, 2019). c) Austrian EFL teachers who appear to be following a ‘communicative style of teaching’ do so ‘unknowingly’. On the contrary, these interactive ideas and activities are suggested by the teachers’ respective coursebooks and not by the teachers’ own design, as their constant interruption of their learners’ flow of speech for the sake of a mistake is very reminiscent of the ‘grammar-translation method’ and incompatible with communicative SL approaches (Daborer, 2018. Grabner, 2019). d) students of a foreign language, e.g. German or English, seem to be fairly proficient in the standard – usually, academic – variety of the language, but, apparently, have serious shortcomings in less formal registers and styles of the target language (Pilsner, 2019) e) immersion projects of this kind increase the SL learners’ cross-cultural awareness and lead to a deeper understanding of colloquialisms, regionalisms and idiomatic expressions, thus expanding the learners’ repertoire of more informal styles and registers as a whole (Alkühn, 2018). A battery of tests has so far been performed based on inferential statistics to ascertain the test design’s reliability and the validity of the data (t-Test, Gaussian distribution, normality test, parameter analyses), which show there is a significant difference between the trainees’ feedback before and after their stints. It can thus be presumed that these placements do indeed benefit the participating students considerably (Schöftner, 2017).
 
Beschreibung Englisch This project involves mutual international teaching placements, which PHDL have been organising and running with our partners and affiliated schools in the UK (York/Edinburgh) and Austria (Linz/Bad Goisern) since 2007. Basically, it is an immersion programme for primary and secondary trainees alike and was designed to benefit their professional development, not only in terms of their teaching capacity, but also as regards their second language proficiency and cross-cultural awareness. In order to place the project on a solid academic footing, a questionnaire has been designed to both evaluate the benefits of these mutual teaching placements and to see how well immersed the trainees have been in the target culture. The research design seeks to cover a wide spectrum of intercultural, linguistic and didactic issues revolving around 5 selected aspects warranting further research, notably language proficiency, cultural studies, didactics and methodology, school systems and efficiency of organisation. The contents of the questionnaire are based on the relevant literature, state-of-the-art didactics and methodology and recent L1/L2 acquisition theories (Brown and Larson-Hall, 2014. Cook and Singleton, 2014. Legutke et al., 2012. Lightbown and Spada, 2013. Mackey, 2012. Thomas, 2001. Wiesinger, 2016). Strictly speaking, there are two questionnaires – one aimed at UK trainees, the incoming students, and the other targeting Austrian trainees. The respective questionnaires, predominantly based on multiple-choice questions, are available on the PHDL Moodle platform and any student participating in the project is required to complete the questionnaire twice – before and after their stint abroad. In the meantime, quite a number of students have joined this research project, actively analysing the data for their own bachelor’s and master’s theses - with their very own scope of research, of course - thus not only benefitting their own academic careers but also contributing to the project as a whole. For example, some very recent and intriguing findings have been that a) Austrian teachers primarily rely on their coursebooks while UK teachers very often do without them (Schauer, 2017). b) the ‘grammar-translation method’, as a teaching style, is still firmly entrenched and extremely popular with SL teachers across the board (Daborer, 2018. Grabner, 2019). c) Austrian EFL teachers who appear to be following a ‘communicative style of teaching’ do so ‘unknowingly’. On the contrary, these interactive ideas and activities are suggested by the teachers’ respective coursebooks and not by the teachers’ own design, as their constant interruption of their learners’ flow of speech for the sake of a mistake is very reminiscent of the ‘grammar-translation method’ and incompatible with communicative SL approaches (Daborer, 2018. Grabner, 2019). d) students of a foreign language, e.g. German or English, seem to be fairly proficient in the standard – usually, academic – variety of the language, but, apparently, have serious shortcomings in less formal registers and styles of the target language (Pilsner, 2019) e) immersion projects of this kind increase the SL learners’ cross-cultural awareness and lead to a deeper understanding of colloquialisms, regionalisms and idiomatic expressions, thus expanding the learners’ repertoire of more informal styles and registers as a whole (Alkühn, 2018). A battery of tests has so far been performed based on inferential statistics to ascertain the test design’s reliability and the validity of the data (t-Test, Gaussian distribution, normality test, parameter analyses), which show there is a significant difference between the trainees’ feedback before and after their stints. It can thus be presumed that these placements do indeed benefit the participating students considerably (Schöftner, 2017).
 
Forschungsschwerpunkt Sprachlehr/lernforschung
 
Schlagwörter exchange, United Kingdom, York, Edinburgh, didactics, culture, cultural studies, cultural awareness,
 
 
Projektleitung gesamt
  • Wiesinger, Markus; Dr

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    Projektleitung intern
  • Wiesinger, Markus; Mag. Dr.

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    Interne Projektmitarbeiter/innen
  • Bauer, Marlene; MEd. BEd
  • Kreutner, Edith; Mag. Dr.
  • Schöftner, Thomas; Dr. BEd MSc.

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    Externe Projektmitarbeiter/innen
  • Hardy, Phil
  • Lightfoot, Zoe
  • Lynch, Michael

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    Status laufend
     
    Geldgeber
  • 1000 Organe der Hochschule der Privaten Pädagogischen Hochschule Linz

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    Laufzeit ab 01.09.2020
     
    Sachgebiete
  • 5833 Fachdidaktik (Geisteswissenschaften)
  • 6721 Kulturwissenschaft
  • 6611 Linguistik

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