Browsing by Author "Van der Walt, Christa"
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- ItemDeveloping a learner's corpus : the case of a first-year module in mathematics(Bureau of the WAT, 2005) Van der Walt, Christa; Fourie, HanelleA learner's corpus is a body of writing for use by a student whose first language is not (in this case) English to improve his/her use of (in this case) academic scientific terminology. In this case study, a learner's corpus was developed for a first-year mathematics module for students in the biological sciences. Lecturers struggle with big classes and a fairly high failure rate which they have addressed in a variety of ways. The learner's corpus is one of an array of support mechanisms built into the teaching-learning process and aims to support the development of academic literacy in this module in particular. In the process of developing and refining this learner's corpus it was compared to Coxhead's Academic Word List to determine whether a general academic word list may not include enough terms to render tailor-made learner's corpora unnecessary. The study concludes that the most frequent terms used in this module either do not appear in the Academic Word List or have such a specialised meaning that general academic support on the basis of the word list would probably not be very useful for students.
- ItemFrom ‘English-only’ to translanguaging strategies : exploring possibilities(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2015) Mwinda, Nangura; Van der Walt, ChristaThis article investigates English language proficiency development in a rural primary school in the Kavango region of Namibia. English is the language of instruction in most schools in Namibia from fourth grade onwards. In addition to other challenges, lack of adequate proficiency in English has been identified as one of the major barriers to learning. Current research on translanguaging demonstrates that purposeful use of translanguaging supports learning. The aim of this article is to argue that a contextual analysis and a test of learners’ proficiency in their dominant language and in English are essential when deciding on translanguaging strategies. This may lead to possible ways in which translanguaging can improve the English language proficiency of rural primary learners in an environment where the language is hardly heard or spoken outside the classroom. The paper argues that translation, and preview – view – review strategies are some of the translanguaging teaching strategies that could be used as resources for building English vocabulary.
- ItemThe functions of code switching in English language learning classes(Stellenbosch University, 2009) Van der Walt, ChristaIt has been a cornerstone of English language teaching, as well as a proud tradition, that English should be taught by using only English. The practice is not questioned often and student teachers remember and are sometimes reminded during their practical teaching sessions of various techniques and strategies that can be used to get learners to speak English only, from pretending to be deaf when learners address them in their home language to punishing learners by exacting a ‘fine’ of some sort when they ‘lapse’ into their home languages. Auerbach (1993), Swain and Lapkin (2000), Cook (2001) and Hughes et al. (2006) discuss the resistance against the use of home or community languages in language teaching classes and describe a variety of functions for which languages other than the target language can be used with good effect. The question in this article is whether English language teaching practices in a number of Western Cape schools demonstrate similar functions of code switching.
- ItemIntroducing Stellenbosch University Open Access Journals(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2011-10) Simon, Carol; Thom, Johan; Botma, Gabriël; Botha, Willem; Brand, Gerrit; Visagie, Stephan E.; Van der Walt, Christa; Vrey, Francois; Khondowe, Oswell
- ItemMeasuring reading strategy knowledge transfer : motivation for teachers to implement reading strategy instruction(Stellenbosch University, 2011) Klapwijk, Nanda; Van der Walt, ChristaAlthough research has shown that reading strategy instruction benefits poor readers, research also shows that teachers continue to struggle with reading strategy instruction and remain resistant to its implementation for various reasons. This article reports on the analysis of quantitative data which formed part of a larger, mixed-method study. The study, which sought to create a framework for reading strategy instruction in Grades 4 to 6 through a predominantly qualitative focus, used quantitative data to, among others, provide evidence of whether strategy knowledge transfer is measurable. This article provides evidence that strategy knowledge transfer is measurable and can, therefore, be used as motivation for teachers to implement reading strategy instruction in a sustainable fashion.
- ItemReconsidering the role of language-in-education policies in multilingual higher education contexts(Stellenbosch University, Department of General Linguistics, 2016) Van der Walt, ChristaAs a result of transnational mobility of students and attempts to widen access to higher education, university campuses have become increasingly multilingual. Responses to this phenomenon have ranged from resistance (sticking to a local and established language) to wide-ranging attempts to become English-medium institutions. The fact that student populations can differ from one semester and one year to the next means that it becomes difficult to plan language-in-education strategies and practices. In the context of South African higher education, this paper argues that lecturers who teach multilingual classes cannot depend on policy makers to create circumstances in which deep learning will take place. It becomes necessary to think in terms of micro-planning (Baldauf 2006), or perhaps rather classroom strategies, to create spaces for multilingual learning
- ItemTime-on-task as an index of situated language proficiency in academic performance(Stellenbosch University, 2004) Faure, Mary; Ridge, Elaine; Van der Walt, ChristaTransforming higher education in South Africa involves, among other things, finding ways of enabling a broader group of students to perform successfully in high-stake assessment. This paper recounts work in progress to that end. The focus is on the effect of time constraints on the performance of physiotherapy students whose first language is other than the one in which the classes and the assessments are presented. The concept of working memory is investigated by using C-tests based on physiotherapy material and the results are correlated with students’ home languages and their performance in other academic subjects. The paper concludes by reflecting on C-tests as a trustworthy instrument to measure situated language proficiency and the implications of the results for higher education.
- ItemTraining primary school teachers for literature teaching : a view from Botswana(Stellenbosch University, 2018) Sanoto, Deborah V.; Van der Walt, ChristaPrimary school level is where the love for reading and understanding of literature starts, and for teachers to succeed in the teaching of reading and literature, they need to display certain habits and practices in their English as a second language (ESL) classrooms. One of the habits is reading extensively and developing a passion for reading. In this study, the impact of the in-service training of a specific group of primary school teachers in Botswana was explored by means of questionnaires and interviews. This was done to investigate the strategies employed by these teachers in terms of their content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) as they teach literature to Standards 1 to 7 ESL pupils. The results from the questionnaires and the interviews allowed us to determine the start of problems with literature teaching. The questionnaire data gave an overview of the reading culture that prevailed in this case, and the interviews made it possible to enhance the picture provided in the questionnaires. This study revealed that the in-service teacher trainees lacked the requisite habits and practices required of a teacher of literature. We therefore argue that these teachers would fail to translate literary concepts into PCK because they had not gained any experience in analysing and evaluating full literary texts during their own schooling or teacher training.