Using guided reflective journals in large classes: Motivating students to independently improve pronunciation

| September 8, 2013
Using guided reflective journals in large classes: Motivating students to independently improve pronunciation

Keywords: reflective journals, motivation, action learning, language learning strategies, learner autonomy.

Emmaline Lear
University of Canberra

Emmaline Lear is an assistant professor in the Academic Skills Centre at the University of Canberra, Australia. Her current role as a learning advisor extends her prior experiences as a teacher and teacher educator in Australia and overseas. Emmaline’s current research interests include academic literacy, applied linguistics, blended language learning, learner autonomy, and second/foreign language learning and teaching.

The use of reflective journals is one intervention strategy that may address the problems inherent in large classes in Japan and allow both learners and teachers to position themselves better within the context of learning and teaching intelligible pronunciation. Results from this small qualitative study show that reflective journals shift the common pedagogical focus towards promoting motivational behaviour to meet individual learner needs. In order to achieve this, students need to adopt a greater independence in the language learning process. Triangulation of data from the reflective journals, interviews and a questionnaire supports the use of the action learning framework embedded within the reflective journal design to establish realistic and achievable pronunciation learning goals. With teacher guidance and support, reflective journals promote motivational action in order to independently achieve those goals. In particular, students increased their language learning strategy use in order to develop their pronunciation. While more research is needed in this area, this study recommends teachers use this cognitive tool of student reflection as an effective strategy to increase self efficacy, focus learning objectives and develop motivational behaviour when teaching pronunciation.
[private] See page: 113-137
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Category: Main Editions, Volume 15 Issue 3