Take the Code-Switching and Foreign Accent Survey

by Corey · 2 comments

Li Wei (on left) and Jean-Marc Dewaele (on right) at Birkbeck College

Professors Li Wei and Jean-Marc Dewaele have launched a relatively short on-line survey to investigate the relationship between personality and attitudes to code-switching and foreign accent.

They would be extremely grateful if you could participate, and forward this call to others. They are looking for both monolingual and multilingual participants.

Survey Link: www.surveymonkey.com/s/Personality_Linguistics

Thank you in advance for your participation!  I’m certain that the valuable information from this survey will help to inform and motivate families like and yours and mine!

Make sure to check out our Multilingual Lives interview with Prof. Jean-Marc Dewaele after you are done with the survey!  It is definitely worth reading and is sure to inspire.

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1 Charity Dell January 4, 2011 at 11:36 pm

The “code-switching” survey was very interesting. I’d be interested in the results. I have never understood why “code-switching” has been made into some kind of “linguistic disease” or “linguistic sin” which we language buffs/teachers are supposed to avoid as either a “plague” or
“backsliding” into a language! We’re bascially taught in TESOL classes that we need to verbally BEAT our students every time they “sin” by using their mother tongues. I think code-switching is a natural part of
speech, occuring within a language, as well as between languages. I don’t agree with the plantation politics of many “immersion methods”
which essentially state that the student’s L1 is “unwanted”, “in the way”
or “interfering” with acquisition of the target language. Much of this “immersion” methodology is a product of either colonialist approaches to education or some misguided concept that we teach learners who have a “tabula rasa” upon which we now “write” the Sacrosanct Target Language! One of the reasons I became an ESL teacher was because I felt much of what we do is downright punitive
to ELLs–as an adult learner of Spanish, I appreciated instructors that didn’t RAM some “Spanish-only” praxis down my linguistic throat. After a year of teaching Haitian and Latino adolescents, my instincts and
methods were proven “successful”–but I believe my “methodology” was secondary to my philosophy of teaching more humanely and treating the students’ L1 as a RESOURCE upon which I could draw and BUILD, rather than a “problem” that “interferes” with their learning of English.
I used more comparitive approaches, insisted my students correct my
own usage of French, Spanish and Kreyol in the class, and incorporated
more linguistic “stuff”–cognate studies, 2,3 and 4-way translation
drills, etc. I emerged a better teacher because my students also taught
ME and inspired ME to expand my knowledge of languages. And “code-switching” was a daily, expected occurence in such a multilingual classroom–though the class was “about” English and taught in English.
I would love to chat/correspond with anyone about these experiences
and how “code-switching” worked to instill confidence in my students
and in myself as an ESL teacher.


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