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ABS332 - Thinking in Spanish: conceptual development and discourse in the Foreign Language classroom

2.6 Dialogue and the co-construction of knowledge
4:10 PM, Wednesday 30 Aug 2017 (20 minutes)
This research study is aimed to entangle the factors that lead to student’s development of thinking when learning Spanish as L2 in Thailand at University level. Vygotsky’s  notion of word meaning as a unit of analysis is the key to investigate thinking and speech; therefore,  the core of this research. However, the idea of word meaning of Vygotsky is also studied in relation to Bakhtin's conception, taking into account the role of authority and power. The notion of Bakhtin’s internally persuasive discourse in relation to conceptual development is used as the methodological tool to analyze students’ interaction when learning about culture and history of Spanish-speaking countries. The appropriation of internally persuasive discourse together with concepts related to history and culture is aimed to foster students’ awareness of the mediation role of culture in their own lives as well as to enable them to interpret cultural artifacts in a more systematic manner so that they can understand their own social and cultural life. The classes are designed following Chaiklin and Hedegaard's radical local approach. Class interaction has been recorded during 6 months, and this data together with students’ oral and written assignments are analyzed in order to shed light on how conceptual development and discourse are related and can promote students’ awareness of their own social community.
Mahidol University International College (Salaya, Thailand)

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