Innovative Approaches to Second Language Reading (Panel)

Pedagogy & Professional

Karin Maxey (Vassar College)

The use of texts in the language classroom can serve not only to help students become more effective, more fluent, and faster L2 readers, but also to help them learn about L2 discourse practices, writing conventions, and culture. While reading research has accomplished a great deal of theory in the past thirty years, it has, however, presented a relative lack of empirical data that supports best practices in the L2 reading classroom. In terms of curriculum itself, there is also conflicting evidence about what types of texts—authentic or inauthentic—seem to work best for various curricular goals. It can also be difficult to select texts for various levels. Given the questions that reading research has yet to fully address, this panel welcomes presentations on innovative approaches to reading in all levels and languages of L2 reading instruction, and data that supports the effectiveness of these approaches. Papers may address any of the following topics:

· Innovative curricular designs for teaching L2 reading

· Data that supports the use of particular approaches

· The use of unabridged (“authentic”) materials in the L2 classroom

· Learning outcomes for L2 reading activities

· Selection of reading materials for different levels of L2 learners

· Reading as a social practice

· Reading strategies

· Other reading-related topics

This panel addresses creative approaches to second language reading in all languages and at all levels. Papers will present data to support their conclusions about the effectiveness of these approaches and offer suggestions for further research.