Fighting Deficit Views of English Foreign Language Learners and Users

Jean-Marc Dewaele of Birkbeck, University of London, United Kingdom, will be presenting a keynote titled “Fighting Deficit Views of English Foreign Language Learners and Users” at The 10th European Conference on Language Learning (ECLL2022), which will be held alongside The 10th European Conference on Education (ECE2022), July 14–17, 2022.

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Fighting Deficit Views of English Foreign Language Learners and Users

In this presentation I will argue that the traditional deficit view about (English) foreign language learners and users (the so-called failure to reach “native-speaker” standard) is the result of narrow-minded monolingual ideologies and is harmful to learners, teachers and foreign language users. Rather than obsessing about deficit, we should acknowledge gaps but also rejoice about progress, and accept that “imperfect” foreign language users are just as legitimate as first language users, and that their foreign accent and odd mistake is as much part of them as the colour of their eyes and hair (Dewaele, 2018; Dewaele et al. 2021).

Dewaele, J.-M. (2018) Why the dichotomy ‘L1 Versus LX User’ is better than ‘Native Versus Non-native Speaker’. Applied Linguistics, 39(2), 236-240.
Dewaele, J.-M., Bak, T. & Ortega, L. (2021) Why the mythical “native speaker” has mud on its face. In N. Slavkov, S. Melo Pfeifer & N. Kerschhofer ‎ (Eds.), The Changing Face of the "Native Speaker": Perspectives from Multilingualism and Globalization. Berlin: Mouton De Gruyter, pp. 23-43.

Speaker Biography

Jean-Marc Dewaele
Birkbeck, University of London, United Kingdom

Professor Jean-Marc Dewaele, Birkbeck, University of London, UKJean-Marc Dewaele is Professor of Applied Linguistics and Multilingualism at Birkbeck, University of London. He does research on individual differences in psycholinguistic, sociolinguistic, pragmatic, psychological and emotional aspects of Second Language Acquisition and Multilingualism. He has published over 250 papers and chapters, seven books and seven special issues. He is the author of the monograph Emotions in Multiple Languages in 2010 (2nd ed in 2013). He is former president of the European Second Language Association and the International Association of Multilingualism. He is former General Editor of the International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism and current General Editor of the Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development. He won the Equality and Diversity Research Award from the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (2013) and the Robert C. Gardner Award for Outstanding Research in Bilingualism (2016) from the International Association of Language and Social Psychology.

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