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  Trames
A Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences

ISSN 1736-7514 (electronic)  ISSN 1406-0922 (print)
Published since 1997

Trames
A Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences

ISSN 1736-7514 (electronic)  ISSN 1406-0922 (print)
Published since 1997

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NATURAL SPEAKING AND HOW TO ASSESS IT; pp. 120–140

(Full article in PDF format) DOI: 10.3176/tr.2010.2.02


Authors

Hille Pajupuu, Krista Kerge, Lya Meister, Eva Liina Asu, Pilvi Alp

Abstract

One of the problems in testing the proficiency of Estonian as a first or second language is that high-stake exams are assessed against the standards of the written language. Given this, we set out to describe the features of the actual use of educated language in different types of text. The goal was to develop L1 and L2 teaching and testing through models of educated language use which a language learner can approach step by step. To achieve this goal we compared the following features of educated use of Estonian as L1 and L2 in different situations: (1) lexical richness and vocabulary range; (2) con­textuality and formality of the text; (3) syntactic complicacy; (4) temporal charac­teristics of the dialogue; (5) strength and disruptiveness of the foreign accent; (6) sentence intonation. The results show that educated language use is mainly genre-dependent. This moves the focus of language learning onto texts of specific genres and confirms the suitability of an action-based approach centred on genres in L1 and L2 teaching and testing, and the need for regular assessor training.

Keywords

L1, L2, language teaching and learning, language testing, natural language use, genres, vocabulary, formality, accent, intonation, syntactic complicacy.

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Current Issue: Vol. 21, Issue 2, 2017




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