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Functional-Notional Approach

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Marlenne García

on 22 January 2014

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Transcript of Functional-Notional Approach

Functional-Notional Approach
The Concept of Functional-notional Approach
Based on theories of language acquisition, often referred to as the "natural" approach, and on the use of language for communication. Encompasses multiple aspects of the communicative act, with language structures selected according to their utility in achieving a communicative purpose.
istory.
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In 1972 D.A. Wilkings a British linguist proposed a radical shift from using traditional grammar and vocabulary concepts. Described the language to an analysis of the communicative meanings that learners would need to express themselves and to understand effectively.

At the end of the 1970s the first course-books to be based on functional syllabuses began to appear. Based on individual functions.

Concepts
1.
Communication
is meaningful behavior in a social and cultural context that requires creative language use rather than synthetic sentence building
2. Language is constructed around language
functions
and
notions.

3. A
situation
may affect variations of language such as the use of dialects, the formality or informality of the language and the mode of expression.
4.
Exponents
are the language utterances or statements that stem from the function, the situation and the topic.
5.
Code
is the shared language of a community of speakers.
6.
Code-switching
is a change or switch in code during the speech act,
A
function
is the use of language to achieve a purpose, usually involving interaction at least between two people.

Examples: evaluating, persuading, arguing, informing, agreeing, questioning, requesting, expressing emotions
Notions
are meaning elements that may be expressed through nouns, pronouns, verbs, prepositions, conjunctions, adjectives or adverbs. A notion is a concept, or idea (topic).
A notion may be “time past”; this may include past tenses, phrases like a month ago, in 1990, last week, etc.

1. The situations in which the FL will be used.
2. Topics and what the learner will be able to do.
3. Language activities to engage.
4. Language functions to perform
Personal: expressing thoughts or feelings.
Interpersonal: social relationships
Referential: reporting about things, actions or events.
Imaginative: discussion of creativity or art.
5.General notions which the learner will be able to handle. Ex. Time, quantity and space.
6. Specific notions to handle
7. Language forms (exponents)
8. Degree of skill required to display.

Essential component in functional-notional syllabi are:
A. The persons taking part in the speech act.

B. The place where the conversation occurs.

C. The time the speech act is taking place.

D. The topic or activity that is being discussed.
1. A functional view of language focusing on doing something through language.
2. A learner-centered view of language learning.
4. A basis in the analysis of learner needs for using language that is reflected in goals, content selection and sequencing, methodology, and evaluation.
6. Learning activities involving authentic language use.
7. Testing focused on ability to use language to react to and operate on the environment.

Characteristics
Students’ Role
Student-centered learning.


Teachers’ Role
Develop the competence to use language.

Merits
From a sociolinguistic perspective the functional-notional syllabuses emphasize the communicative purpose of the speech act, as result:
1. Often tries to set fairly realistic language
2. Offers everyday use vocabulary, and cultural knowledge.
3. Recognizes the speaker must have a real purpose for speaking.

From a psycholinguistic perspective the Functional-notional syllabuses placed the needs of learners at the core of the program, so:
1. Are often arranged acording to levels and needs targeted.
2. It is intrinsically motivating.
3. Understand before asking learners to produce, sufficient input must be provided.
4. Courses an be designed in a flexible way.

From a linguistic perspective:
1. Will help learners to acquire reasonable basic knowledge of phonetics, grammar and lexical substystems in a language.



From an educational perspective:
1. Enables teachers to exploits psycholinguistic, sociolinguistic, linguistic and educational principles.
2. Can develop naturally from existing teaching methods.
3. Provides widespread promotion of foreign language courses.

Drawbacks
Some drawbacks are:
The idea of language determined by the uses is a simplistic view.
Communication does not just refers to functions and notions.
Assume language can be broken into discrete components and taught separately.
Important grammatical structures may not be touched by the functions.
Language functions do not have particular linear sequence.
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