Complexity in adult task-based language teaching for specific purposes supporting doctor patient conversation in Xhosa
Thesis (MA (African Languages))--Stellenbosch University, 2008.
The purpose of this study is to apply relevant and up-to-date theories concerning language learning and acquisition to the specific needs of second-language learners of isiXhosa in the field of health sciences through microanalysis of doctor-patient dialogues in isiXhosa. This study explores a task-based approach to language learning and teaching that differs from traditionally applied methods. In this approach, the performance of a task is regarded as the key feature in the language-learning process. This is in accordance with the central aim of the task-based approach to language learning and teaching, which is to transform the prescribed roles of teachers and learners in the classroom context so that learners move from being passive observers to being actively involved in their own learning processes, and teachers become facilitators and not presenters of the language.In an endeavour to exploit the possibilities of tasks in the teaching and learning of isiXhosa for health sciences needs, this study investigates the various components that comprise a task as well as the possible effects that these components may have on language learning and use. The results of the study could then provide teachers of second-language courses with specific notions and strategies, which, when successfully applied, could ensure optimal language learning and acquisition for language learners. To expand the study, an analysis is conducted regarding the presence and nature of cognitive complexity and syntactic complexity in authentic doctor-patient dialogues in isiXhosa. The classification of these conversations will serve to inform the manner in which tasks could be sequenced in a task-based language teaching course for second-language learners.