Literacy is an essential tool for functioning in a modern society and, as such, it is often taken for granted when developing second language learning curricula for people who need to learn another language. However, almost 750 million people around the world cannot read and write, because of limited or absent formal education. Among them, migrants face the additional challenge of having to learn a second language as they settle in a new country. Second language research has only recently started focusing on this population, whose needs have long been neglected. This contribution presents a systematic review of the classroom-based research conducted with such learners and aims at identifying the teaching practices that have proven to be successful and the principles that should inform curriculum design when working with this population. A first observation emerging from the review concerns the scarcity of experimentally validated studies within this domain. Nonetheless, based on the results of the available literature, this work highlights the importance of contextualized phonics teaching and of oral skills development, which turn out to be most effective when emphasis is put on learners’ cultural identities and native languages.

Promoting Literacy in Adult Second Language Learners: A Systematic Review of Effective Practices

Piccinin S.
;
Dal Maso S.
2021

Abstract

Literacy is an essential tool for functioning in a modern society and, as such, it is often taken for granted when developing second language learning curricula for people who need to learn another language. However, almost 750 million people around the world cannot read and write, because of limited or absent formal education. Among them, migrants face the additional challenge of having to learn a second language as they settle in a new country. Second language research has only recently started focusing on this population, whose needs have long been neglected. This contribution presents a systematic review of the classroom-based research conducted with such learners and aims at identifying the teaching practices that have proven to be successful and the principles that should inform curriculum design when working with this population. A first observation emerging from the review concerns the scarcity of experimentally validated studies within this domain. Nonetheless, based on the results of the available literature, this work highlights the importance of contextualized phonics teaching and of oral skills development, which turn out to be most effective when emphasis is put on learners’ cultural identities and native languages.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/1052412
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