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Conference Information

Full Title: Teaching Formulaic Language to L2 Learners

Location: Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
Start Date: 16-Jul-2017 - 21-Jul-2017
Contact: Oscar Bladas Marti
Meeting Email: click here to access email
Meeting Description: In recent years L2 teaching and learning materials have increasingly paid more attention to formulaic forms, including collocations, discourse markers, and indirect speech formulae (e.g. Can you help me?). This growing interest in formulaic language suggests that materials developers and publishers, teachers, and students, are becoming more aware of the importance of mastering L2 formulaic forms so as to ‘speak’ and ‘sound’ like a native speaker (see Ellis 2012, Meunier 2012). To some extent, this interest in formulaic language in the area of L2 teaching and learning is due to the growing research in formulaic language from a variety of theoretical backgrounds, including, e.g., Corpora Linguistics and Construction Grammar. Recent publications (see Corrigan et al. 2009, Wood 2010a, 2010b) show that formulaic language is no longer regarded as a marginal or even an anecdotal area of study, but a relevant —and interdisciplinary— research field which can greatly contribute to our understanding of language structure and use.

However, the pedagogical approach to formulaic language poses interesting, and challenging, questions to the research in the field. Two simple questions such as “What do we need to teach?” and “How can we teach it?” are not, by any means, easy to answer. As Meunier (2012) indicates, teachers need, first, to identify formulaic forms, and, second, to know whether a particular formulaic form is worth being taught or not. In addition, teachers need to know how to teach formulaic language in an effective way. On a more theoretical level, these two questions also challenge any definition of formulaic language and any attempt to formalise a diverse, yet similar, wide range of forms.


Corrigan, Roberta, Moravcsik, Edith A., and Ouali, Hamid (Eds.) (2009a). Formulaic Language, Volume 1: Distribution and Historical Change. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Corrigan, Roberta; Moravcsik, Edith A., and Ouali, Hamid (Eds.) (2009b). Formulaic Language, Volume 2: Acquisition, Loss, Psychological Reality, and Functional Explanations. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Ellis, Nick C. (2012). Formulaic Language and Second Language Acquisition: Zipf and the Phrasal Teddy Bear. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 32, pp 17 – 44. Meunier, Fanny (2012). Formulaic Language and Language Teaching. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 32, pp 111 – 129. Wood, David (2010a). Perspectives on Formulaic Language: Acquisition and Communication. London: Continuum. Wood, David (2010b). Formulaic Language and Second Language Speech Fluency: Background, Evidence and Classroom Applications. London: Continuum.
Linguistic Subfield: Applied Linguistics; Language Acquisition
LL Issue: 27.3513

This is a session of the following meeting:
15th International Pragmatics Conference

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