PL EN


2015 | 5 | 3 | 409-429
Article title

Searching for an English self through writing

Authors
Content
Title variants
Languages of publication
EN
Abstracts
EN
Most Finnish university students, just like the other new global elites (Kramsch, 2013), use English without problems. Some students, however, struggle with English to the extent that their studies suffer. One could say that they have a deeply “wounded” English self (Karlsson, 2013). My context of research and practice is the Autonomous Learning Modules (ALMS) at Helsinki University Language Centre. In my work as a language counsellor and practitioner-researcher, pedagogical concerns are always primary, and there is a need to appreciate diversity yet notice every student’s unique experiences. The broad background of my recent work is English as part of the identity of young academic Finns. In particular, I have been interested in how students with a “wounded” English self can develop new identity positions, and in how a language counsellor can help them in this process. In this paper, my focus is on the subtle practical interconnections between learner autonomy, learner diversity, and learner identity as they emerge in a diary written by a student of English with dyslexia and language (classroom) anxiety. A narrative case study of Mariia illustrates how the counsellor’s appreciation and her own recognition of the complex ecological realities (Casanave, 2012) surrounding and interacting with her learning encourage and empower her. Mariia uses her freedom to control her own learning (Huang & Benson, 2013) and makes choices from the many lifewide experiential learning opportunities in her life (Karlsson & Kjisik, 2011). Reflective writing in the learning diary helps her to construct a realistic vision of herself as a learner and user of English, and she leaves the identity position of a failure in the classroom and claims a new, more successful one (Norton, 2014).
Year
Volume
5
Issue
3
Pages
409-429
Physical description
Contributors
  • Helsinki University Language Centre, Finland
References
  • Aoki, N. (2009). Defending stories and sharing one: Towards a narrative understanding of teacher autonomy. In R. Pemberton, S. Toogood, & A. Barfield (Eds.), Maintaining control. Autonomy and language learning (pp.199- 216). Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.
  • Benson, P. (2013). Narrative writing as method: Second language identity development in study abroad. In G. Barkhuizen (Ed.), Narrative research in applied linguistics (pp. 244-263). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Bolton, G. (2010). Reflective practice. Writing and professional development (3rd ed.). London: Sage.
  • Casanave, C. (2012). The diary of a dabbler: Ecological influences on an EFL teacher’s efforts to study Japanese informally. TESOL Quaterly, 46(4), 642-670.
  • Chase, S. (2003). Learning to listen: Narrative principles in a qualitative research methods course. In R. Josselson, A. Lieblich, & D. P. McAdams (Eds.), Up close and personal. The teaching and learning of narrative research (pp. 79-99). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
  • Clandinin, D. J., & Connelly, F. M. (1995). Teachers' professional knowledge landscapes. New York: Teachers College Press.
  • Clandinin, D. J., & Connelly, F. M. (2000). Narrative inquiry. Experience and story in qualitative research. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
  • Clough, P. (2002). Narratives and fictions in educational research. Buckingham: Open University Press.
  • Conle, C. (1996). Resonance in pre-service teacher inquiry. American Educational Research Journal, 33(2), 297-325.
  • Georgakopoulou, A. (2007). Small stories, interaction and identities. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
  • Huang, J., & Benson, P. (2013). Autonomy, agency and identity in foreign and second language education. Chinese Journal of Applied Linguistics, 36(1), 6-27.
  • Jackson, N. (2010). From a curriculum that integrates work to a curriculum that integrates life: changing a university's conceptions of curriculum. Higher Education Research & Development, 29(5), 491-505.
  • Jackson, N. (2013). Lifewide learning, education & personal development. Retrieved from http://www.normanjackson.co.uk/uploads/1/0/8/4/10842717chapter _c4_learning_ecology_narratives.pdf)
  • Jokinen, E. (2004). The makings of mother in diary narratives. Qualitative Inquiry, 10(3), 339-350.
  • Karjalainen, A. (2012). Elettyä ymmärtämässä: Omaelämäkerrallinen kirjoittaminen ja teksti reflektiona sosiaalialan ammattikorkeakouluopinnoissa [Autobiographical writing and text as reflection in social studies conducted at the Diaconia University of Applied Sciences]. Helsinki: Diaconia University of Applied Sciences.
  • Karlsson, L. (2008). Turning the kaleidoscope – (E)FL educational experience and inquiry as auto/biography. Helsinki: University of Helsinki Language Centre. Retrieved from https://oa.doria.fi/handle/10024/42707).
  • Karlsson, L. (2012). Sharing stories: Autobiographical narratives in advising. In J. Mynard & L. Carson (Eds.), Advising in language learning: Dialogue, tools and context (pp. 185-204). Harlow: Pearson.
  • Karlsson, L. (2013). Lost and found – Storytelling in language counseling. Chinese Journal of Applied Linguistics, 36(1), 107-124.
  • Karlsson, L., & Kjisik, F. (2007). The role of autobiography in fostering learner autonomy. In A. Barfield & S. Brown (Eds.),Reconstructingautonomy in language education. Inquiry and innovation (pp. 130-142). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Karlsson, L., & Kjisik, F. (2011). Lifewide and lifedeep learning and the autonomous learner. In K. K. Pitkänen, J. Jokinen, S. Karjalainen, L. Karlsson, T. Lehtonen, M. Matilainen, C. Niedling, & R. Siddall (Eds.), Out-of-classroom language learning (pp. 85-106). Helsinki: University of Helsinki Language Centre.
  • Karlsson, L., Kjisik, F., & Nordlund, J. (1997). From here to autonomy. Helsinki: Helsinki University Press.
  • Karlsson, L., Kjisik, F., & Nordlund, J. (2007). Language counselling: A critical and integral component in promoting an autonomous community of learning. System, 35(1), 46-65.
  • Kramsch, C. (2009). The multilingual subject. What foreign language learners say about their experience and why it matters. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Kramsch, C. (2013). Afterword. In B. Norton, Identity and language learning: Extending the conversation (2nd ed.) (pp. 192-201). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Leppänen, S., Pitkänen-Huhta, A., Nikula, T., Kytölä, S., Törmäkangas, T., Nissinen, K., Kääntä, L., Virkkula, T., Laitinen, M., Pahta, P., Koskela, H., Lähdesmäki, S., & Jousmäki, H. (2009). National survey on the English language in Finland: Uses, meanings and attitudes. Jyväskylä: University of Jyväskylä.
  • Lieblich, A., Tuval-Mashiach, R., & Zilber, T. (1998). Narrative research. Reading, analysis and interpretation. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
  • Murray, G. (Ed.). (2014). Social dimensions of autonomy in language learning. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Norton, B. (2014). Identity and poststructuralist theory in SLA. In S. Mercer & M. Williams (Eds.), Multiple perspectives on the self in SLA (pp. 59-74). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Palfreyman, R. (2014). The ecology of learner autonomy. In G. Murray (Ed.), Social dimensions of autonomy in language learning (pp. 175-191). Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
  • Ricoeur, P. (1991). Narrative identity. In D. Wood (Ed.), On Paul Ricoeur. Narrative interpretation (pp. 188-199). London: Routledge.
  • Ryan, S., & Irie, K. (2014). Imagined and possible selves: Stories we tell ourselves about ourselves. In S. Mercer & M. Williams (Eds.), Multiple perspectives on the self in SLA (pp. 109-126). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Ushioda, E. (2009). A person-in-context relational view of emergent motivation, self and identity. In Z. Dörnyei, & E. Ushioda (Eds.), Motivation, language identity and the L2 self (pp. 215-228). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Ushioda, E. (2011). Motivating Learners to speak as themselves. In G. Murray, X. Gao, & T. Lamb (Eds.), Identity, motivation and autonomy in language learning (pp. 11-24). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Ushioda, E. (2013). Motivation and ELT: Looking ahead to the future. In E. Ushioda (Ed.), International Perspectives on motivation: Language learning and professional challenges (pp. 1-17). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Vandrick, S. (2013). ‘The colonial legacy’ and ‘missionary kid’ memoirs. In G. Barkhuizen (Ed.), Narrative research in applied linguistics (pp. 19-40). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Van Lier, L. (2004). The ecology and semiotics of language learning: A sociocultural perspective. Boston: Kluwer Academic.
  • Vieira, F. (1999). Pedagogy and autonomy: Can they meet? Revista Canaria de Estudios Ingleses, 38, 13-35.
  • Vieira, F. (2010). Towards teacher and learner autonomy: Exploring a pedagogy of experience in teacher education. Revista Canaria de Estudios Ingleses, 61, 13-27.
  • Vieira, F. (2013). The scholarship of pedagogy in adverse settings. In M. Flores, A. Carvalho, F. Ferreira, & M. Vilaca (Eds.), Back to the future. Legacies, continuities and changes in educational policy, practice and research (pp. 257-276). Rotterdam: Sense.
Document Type
Publication order reference
Identifiers
YADDA identifier
bwmeta1.element.desklight-cd3a9fae-a3cc-4b12-b92e-d87247e34655
JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.