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Title: Understanding complex processes in developing student teachers' knowledge about grammar
Authors: Svalberg, Agneta Marie-Louise
First Published: 2-Oct-2015
Publisher: Wiley
Citation: Modern Language Journal, Special Issue on Language Teacher Cognition in Applied Linguistics Research: Revisiting the Territory, Redrawing the Boundaries, Reclaiming the Relevance, 99 (3), pp. 529-545 (16)
Abstract: This article takes the view that grammar is driven by user choices and therefore complex and dynamic. This has implications for the teaching of grammar in language teacher education and how teachers’ cognitions about grammar, and hence their own grammar teaching, might change. The participants in this small, interpretative study, students on an MA programme in the UK, were being taught grammar from a functional perspective, but with mainly traditional classifications and metalanguage. They were required to negotiate solutions to grammar tasks designed to provoke ‘cognitive conflict’ (Tocalli-Beller 2003) when the authentic language use of the texts did not conform to the students’ prior knowledge. This was assumed to stimulate a high quality of engagement with language (EWL; Svalberg 2009), thus facilitating the construction of new or enhanced knowledge about grammar. Analysis of the participants’ learner diaries, interviews and workshop interaction reveal that cognitive conflict is an essential factor in the emergence of new understandings of complex grammar features and of grammar as meaning in context. The study contributes to the literature on inquiry based approaches to language learner education by the insights it provides into knowledge creation in such environments.
DOI Link: 10.1111/modl.12241
ISSN: 0026-7902
eISSN: 1540-4781
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2015 The Modern Language Journal. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: SVALBERG, A. M.–L. (2015), Understanding the Complex Processes in Developing Student Teachers’ Knowledge About Grammar. The Modern Language Journal, 99: 529–545, which has been published in final form at . This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
Description: The file associated with this record is under a 24-month embargo from publication in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy, available at The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Education

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