53 minutes | Sep 4th 2014

Episode 016: I Can't Be Bothered with Vowels

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Show Notes: The Minimal Pair Title: I Can't Be Bothered with VowelsEpisode no: 016Date: Recorded on 09/04/14Topics in Language LearningLanguage snobberyEnglish is spoken in many countries – so which is the “right” English?English has official/special status in 75 countries (2 billion speakers)Numbers and their implications: more non-native speakers than native speakers (probably…)ESL students from English-speaking countries: what does that say about us (the ESL programs)? Grammar snobbery There’s a time and a place to get it right (formal vs. informal English)Prescriptive grammar vs. descriptive grammarPrivileges: education, class, race, L1 vs. L2, abilityLanguage evolutionSources:LinkedIn Group: English Skills and Language: Discussion: “India is the single largest English speaking population on Earth. Do you agree?” (discussion started by GB Singh, 8/18/14)“FAQs The English Language” – British Council (http://www.britishcouncil.org/learning-faq-the-english-language.htm)“Why Grammar Snobbery Has No Place in the Movement,” from 5/2/14 (http://everydayfeminism.com/2014/05/grammar-snobbery/)[20:50]MethodologyPowerPointPowerPoint, taboo?ProsVisual aid – especially helpful to visual learnersKeeping the lesson on track/organizedAccessible (can be saved in Bb and referred back to later)Interactive (sometimes… depends on who made it!)Student useConsOne-way learning/teacher-centered classroomInhibits organic discussionVisual pollution/over-saturation of slides“Overly formal” vibeOver-simplifies the material (reduces critical thinking)TipsGuy Kawasaki’s 10, 20, 30 rule – 10 slides, 20 minutes, 30-point fontKeeping it simple – but not simplifying the materialMake it interactive (to avoid “one-way learning)Spice it up!Set expectations (i.e., students shouldn’t just sit and copy from the slides)Take breaksSources: “Does PowerPoint Help or Hinder Learning?” by Maryellen Weimer, PhD in Teaching Professor Blog (http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-professor-blog/does-powerpoint-help-or-hinder-learning/) Blog post from Guy Kawasaki, December 30, 2005 (blog.guykawasaki.com)[41:35]Adjunct AnticsValuing AdjunctsThe downside of being an adjunctLower payNo retirement plan or benefitsNo job certainty/guaranteeNo/less input to department decisions “Adjunct Faculty Loan Fairness Act”Student debt is a problem for most people, but adjuncts (who have less job certainty and low pay) have an especially hard time paying off their loans2007 – Congress created PSLF (Public Service Loan Forgiveness), to offer loan forgiveness to people in public and non-profit sectorsMany adjuncts don’t qualify for PSLF because you have to work an average of 30 hours a week/year, and adjuncts don’t always get enough hoursThe Adjunct Faculty Loan Fairness Act would allow adjuncts to access PSLF, regardless of hours workedSources:“Adjunct faculty exploring unionization,” by Koran Addo, St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/education/adjunct-faculty-exploring-unionization/article_5691bb7b-08b7-5f36-9e48-c52544c840c8.html)“Big News: Sen. Dick Durbin Introduces Adjunct Faculty Loan Fairness Act,” from Adjunct Action (http://adjunctaction.org/2014/07/big-news-sen-dick-durbin-introduces-adjunct-faculty-loan-fairness-act/)
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