My And Misconceptions About Second Language Learning By Barry Mclaughlin

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In his article, “My and Misconceptions about Second Language Learning,” published in 1992, Barry McLaughlin listed five major myths and misconceptions held by the general public, or specifically by some second language teachers, as well as some contradictory viewpoints about second language learning held by different scholars. In his five main arguments, he puts specific emphases on his suggestions for second language teachers about second language teaching and learning to dispel these five myths and misconceptions. Though diverse and comprehensive, McLaughlin’s synthesis of relevant language teaching and learning studies does not provide enough connections among the sources he mentioned, and relevant viewpoints are repeated and overlapped. In terms of learners’ age, the author first discusses whether children are better second…show more content…
He then questions whether the earlier children learn a second language, the better they learn, considering the timing of learning. Similar to timing, McLaughlin then extended his argument to the relationship between learners’ amount of exposure to the second language and their learning progress. Reflecting the major concern about who are better second language learners as well as when and how they learn better, the author then points out the criteria for a successful language acquisition and the illusion that whoever can speak a language means he or she have acquired the language. He finally suggests that each second language learner has a different learning style and draws to the conclusion that highlights and embraces the cultural and linguistic diversity in the American education. Concerning the differences in second language acquisition between children and adults, McLaughlin proposes similar approaches to question the validity of the younger-is-better hypothesis and the idea that one learns quicker with more exposure time. In terms of biological development and cognitive development, he refers to studies that suggest

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