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SLA RESEARCH AND LANGUAGE TEACHING.Rod Ellis. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. Pp. viii + 280. £19.10 paper.

  • James P. Lantolf (a1)

Abstract

Rod Ellis's latest offering addresses issues relating to the interface between SLA research and language pedagogy. To this end, the book opens with an informative and thought-provoking examination of applied SLA (research simultaneously encompassing the theory and practice of SLA and pedagogy), which, following Widdowson, Ellis distinguishes from SLA applied (extension of SLA findings to teaching). In this regard he discusses the difference between technical knowledge and “confirmatory,” often experimental, research on the one hand, and practical knowledge and “interpretative,” real world, observation-interactional research on the other. According to Ellis, the confirmatory tradition, which promotes an applied science (i.e., SLA applied) view of education, has been the dominant paradigm in the field. This tradition situates researchers at the top of the research-practice hierarchy as producers of information and locates teachers lower down on the hierarchy as information consumers.

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