Synopsis 488

940:488 Topics in Spanish Linguistics

Synopsis:
How do children acquire just one language and how do they get so good at it by such an early age? What about a second language: how does bilingual language acquisition ‘work’? To address these questions in this course, we will first establish a framework for how we view language acquisition from birth and apply that to bilingual language development. Additionally, we will define varying types of bilingualism that exist in childhood and explore the educational approaches to teaching bilinguals and early second language learners. Finally, we will examine the benefits of bilingualism.

In this class, we will learn to analyze significant, contemporary research on bilingual language acquisition and education coming from the US and abroad. We will also look at this research via real-life examples in the news and mass media. Students will be expected to participate actively in online discussions with their classmates as well as to offer their opinions on the topics covered via weekly summaries. Materials for the course are to be accessed via our Sakai site. This class is completely online and will be conducted in Spanish.


Learning goals:

940:488 students will be expected to produce, as a final project, a 10-page research paper of some aspect of bilingual child development, after consultation with the professor.

940:588 students will be expected to produce, as a final project, a portfolio unit of at least 5 lessons, in preparation for their capstone portfolio (if applicable to the student’s program). These materials will be curriculum-specific, grade-appropriate, and adapted to the K-12 classroom.