The article describes the statistic evolution of language learning and teaching in North Rhine-Westphalian grammar schools between 1965 and 1990. Focussing on only one land of the German Federal Republic allows a detailed view on an epoch when important school reforms took place which included consequences for foreign language learning and teaching
In the tradition of cognitive learning theories the foreign language learner is considered to be actively involved in the learning process. It is assumed that learning strategies such as planning, monitoring, directed attention, or elaboration are one decisive factor among others that contribute to the learner’s success in the foreign language classroom. Based on this assumption both quantitative and qualitative empirical data were collected in five German secondary schools (number of subjects: 318, at the intermediary level) in order to find out to what extend learning strategies and other cognitive, affective-motivational and social variables determine the foreign language learning process. The results indicate that certain learning strategies that the learners had acquired in previous learning experiences had a very significant impact on the learning results, whereas the influence of a learning strategies training program was only temporary or marginal.
At the Free University of Berlin, a new tutoring model for training teachers of “German as a foreign language” working with non-native students has been developed. The model integrates theoretical issues in student teacher seminars, supervised teaching experiences and pedagogical problem solving. Designed for student teachers the model closely follows many elements of contemporary theories of teaching training.
The author shows in her paper the role of language teaching in the Australian school system, i.e. in a country that has acknowledged politically its multilingual diversity and multiculturalism. The Australian school language policy is discussed with regard to the development of LOTE (languages other than English) as the overcome of a division of community languages and foreign languages. Examples are used to characterize different concepts and approaches. The key role of heterogeneity is described in three aspects: on the language policy level, on the school policy level and on the didactical level. Finally, it is asked in how far the German discussion can profit from the Australian development.
Though the interdependence between affect and cognition is widely acknowledged in various disciplines, it does not represent an established notion in foreign language acquisition research and foreign language teaching methodology. An attempt is made to give a critical survey of the development of this concept and to present an exemplary model and its practical implications.