Language Learning: Methods and Media

Welcome to my class!

When: Monday 3:15-4:45 pm
Where: Collegium Novum B 302
Start: 22.02.2016

for active attendance, mid-term test and 1 oral presentation of a specific method or media and 1 written analysis (of the same method/media) according to a given scheme (about 3 pages)

„Egzamin” for Polish students (UAM students): short oral exam with questions and answers about one of the topics from the list.

Go to the Reading Section

Web-based language learning: useful links

Overview over available material for many languages:

Language courses, online teaching, partners and tutors, advice, blogs about language learning:
(you may like to read this article first (short review of: Busuu, Duolinguo, Foreign Services Institute, Livemocha, Memrise)

Slides and handouts of the lectures

  • Seventh lecture (11.04.2016)
  • Sixth lecture (04.04.2016)
  • Fifth lecture (21.03.2016)
  • Fourth lecture (14.03.2016)
  • Third lecture (07.03.2016)
  • Homework for the third lecture: fill out the Learning Styles Survey, download it here!
  • Second lecture (29.02.2016):
  • First lecture (22.02.2016): presentation
  • ***
    Short course description (the full description can be found here)This course introduces students to current models of language learning and enables them to apply this knowledge in analysing individual learning methods, textbooks and web-based material. Students will also reflect their own approach to language learning and discover ways to be more successful. The focus of the course is on the role of the learner and central concepts such as learner autonomy and learning strategies, and therefore on situations where languages are learned outside the traditional classroom. As learning languages through the Internet and social media is getting increasingly popular and web-based materials are widely available even for lesser-taught languages, they will receive special attention in this class.


    22.02. Introduction, basic concepts and definitions, organizational matters
    29.02. Learning strategies: what learners do when learning a language
    07.03. Learning styles: individual preferences in language learning
    14.03. Second language acquisition research: history, aims, methods; Krashen’s model
    21.03. Approaches to learning and teaching languages; Direct approach and Formal approach
    04.04. The communicative approach and the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages
    11.04. More theories about language learning
    18.04. Presentations:

    • Alena Vasilkova: (learning platform)
    • Arletta Radke: Total Physical Response (method)
    • Prof. Nau & class: Dictionaries and grammars

    25.04. Presentations:

    • Esar Kaya & Göknur Aydin: Aduio-lingual method(s)
    • Dawid Kamiński: Flashcards made with Anki

    No classes on May 2 and May 9
    16.05. Students’ presentations
    23.05. Students’ presentations
    30.05. Students’ presentations
    06.06. Students’ presentations
    13.06. Summary and final discussion

    Selected literature and web-sites

    Breen, Michael P. (ed.) 2001. Learner contributions to language learning. New directions of research. Harlow: Longman.
    Cohen, Andrew D. & Dörnyei, Zoltán. 2002. Focus on the Language Learner: Motivation, Styles and Strategies. N. Schmitt (ed.): An Introduction to Applied Linguistics. London: Arnold, 170-190.
    Council of Europe. Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, teaching, assessment. Available online at:
    Davies, Alan & Elder, Catherine (eds.) 2006. The handbook of applied linguistics. Malden: Blackwell.
    De Bot, Kees / L. Wander / M. Vespoor. 2005. Second language acquisition – an advanced research book. London: Routledge.
    Decoo, Wilfried: On the mortality of language learning methods. Paper given as the James L. Barker lecture, Nov. 8th 2001 at Brigham Young University. Available online at
    Leaver, Betty Lou / Ehrman, Madeline Elizabeth / Shekhman, Boris. 2005. Achieving success in second language acquisition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    Mitchel, R. Miles, F. 1998. Second language learning theories. London: Arnold.
    Saville-Troike, Muriel. 2007. Introducing second language acquisition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

    Andrew D. Cohen’s website at:
    Vivian Cook’s website on Second Language Acquisition Topics at:
    Stephen Krashen’s website at:
    Scott Thornbury’s blog at: