Situational Analysis of Esl Student

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CONTEXT Katie, aged 15, is a highly motivated student from a family with a strong educational background, currently living and studying in a British-style International School in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), Vietnam, and is a member of the increasing group of globally-mobile students. Katie can be solidly placed into the “entering phrase” of the transition from Taiwanese national to immigrant in a Western society, where she “has decided to become part of the new community, but is still figuring out what that means” (Hayden 2006:53) at the age of thirteen. She is an example of what has recently been identified as a common occurrence for international school students, children going through a “sojourner adjustment” (McKillop-Ostrom 2000), as can…show more content…
It will also serve to provide the beginning stage of a more comprehensive action research study to allow me to meet her needs as best I can, which I will discuss in the conclusion. METHODOLOGY The objective of this case study is to describe, in terms of second language acquisition theory, this student’s language proficiency, especially through the lens of whether she will achieve the expected ‘C grade’ required of her for passing and matriculation. The key research question for this case study is, “What are the specific language-based and affective patterns that identify this child, and can they be described in an inter-related fashion?” My hypothesis is that such “thick description” (Geertz 1994) can be reached through two different but complementary aspects of second language acquisition theory by integrating the discussion along these lines: • Learner language analysis. Features and patterns are identified through a close analysis of Katie’s output: written and oral. This is matched to SLA theory, and ‘gaps’ between the target and achieved language will be identified. • Affective factors as revealed from choices in responding to prompts and the content of discussion from three interviews held with Katie. Situational Analysis of “Katie” —
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