Listening & Reading: two tasks used in teaching to develop discourse skills in the classroom.

Essay by ArabictisUniversity, Master's September 2005

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Discourse Analysis (DA) is the analysis of language in use (Brown and Yule 1983). It also examines how stretches of language, considered in their full textual, social, and psychological context, become meaningful and unified for their users. It provides insight into the problems and processes of language use and language learning, and is therefore of great importance to language teachers (Cook 1989).

All micro-skills have direct relationship with DA. Therefore, language teachers have immediate interest in DA because, as teachers, we have the question in our mind of how people use language when we design teaching materials or when we engage learners in exercises and activities aimed at making them proficient users of their target language.

Learning Grammar and Reading are critical elements in the language performance of adult second language learners, whether they are communicating at school, at work, or in the community.



The two competing models of language processing, the bottom-up view and the top-down view, have also had a central place in the debate on the nature of reading comprehension.

Until recently, the bottom-up approach was the basis of the vast majority of reading schemes. As in the case of listening, there is a general agreement that efficient readers use top-down and bottom-up processing simultaneously. The best reading materials will encourage an engagement with larger textual forms, through problem solving exercises, but not neglect the role of individual words, phrases and grammatical devices in guiding the reader around the text.

Reading Task 1:

Level: Adult Students

Course: Upper Intermediate English Course for ESL students

Number of students: 15 students

Activity: Reading exercise (See attached Text 1) - Time limit: 50 minutes.

Aim of the activity: To explore the problems students may be having with discourse

type recognition and the obstacles this may pose for...