A Dynamic Approach to Second Language Development

A Dynamic Approach to Second Language Development : Methods and techniques

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Dynamic systems theory, a general theory of change and development, offers a new way to study first and second language development and requires a new set of tools for analysis of empirical data. After a brief introduction to the theory, this book, co-authored by several leading scholars in the field, concentrates on tools and techniques recently developed to analyze language data from a dynamic perspective. The chapters deal with the general thoughts and reasoning behind coding data, analyzing variability, discovering interacting variables and modeling. The accompanying How to sections give step-by-step instructions to using macros to speed up the coding, creating a dedicated lexical profile, making min-max graphs, testing for significance in single case studies by running simulations, and modeling. Example files and data sets are available on the accompanying website (http://dx.doi.org/10.1075/lllt.29.website). Although the focus is on second language development, the tools are applicable to a wide range of phenomena in applied linguistics.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 211 pages
  • 160 x 240 x 12.7mm | 410g
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • English
  • + index
  • 9027219990
  • 9789027219992
  • 1,204,978

Table of contents

1. List of How to sections; 2. Acknowledgements; 3. Introduction (by Bot, Kees de); 4. Researching Second Language Development from a Dynamic Systems Theory perspective (by Bot, Kees de); 5. Dynamic Systems Theory and a usage-based approach to Second Language Development (by Verspoor, Marjolijn); 6. Coding and extracting data (by Schmid, Monika S.); 7. Variability and DST (by Dijk, Marijn van); 8. Visualizing interactions between variables (by Verspoor, Marjolijn); 9. Modeling development and change (by Lowie, Wander); 10. Epilogue (by Bot, Kees de); 11. How to sections (by Verspoor, Marjolijn); 12. References; 13. Index; 14. Website
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Review quote

One of the greatest strengths of this book is that it will be relevant to both novice and experienced researchers. The novice will find advice, examples, and encouragement. More experienced researchers will find a convenient reference to much of the field-breaking work being done within the DST perspective as well as tips for extending their methodology. Another strength is that the book's ability to reduce extremely challenging and technical methodology to manageable bits will inspire readers to engage in such methodology themselves. The main genius of this book is its ability to translate very complex ideas and methodology into layman's terms. Those who dislike mathematical processing will be enabled to integrate these new methodologies into their work. -- Julie Bruch, University of Kansas, on Linguist List 22.4013, 2011
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