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FH Distinguished Lecture Series - What makes L2 tasks engaging?

by Professor Zoltán Dörnyei, School of English, University of Nottingham, UK

Date                  26 February 2018
Time                 5:00pm-6:30pm
Venue               M1603
The talk will be conducted in English.

About the talk
Any cognitive benefit from an instructional activity requires that the participants engage with the learning process, and yet the study of ‘task motivation’ has not been a featured theme in research on either L2 motivation or on L2 tasks. This talk begins with an overview of past theorizing on how motivation unfolds in specific behavioural segments such as learning tasks. It is then argued that recent research on ‘directed motivational currents’ (DMCs) offers a new angle for the understanding of task engagement, as it considers in a unified construct a person’s initial motivation (goal/vision) and its outworking in the individual’s actual action, that is, in task participation. This integration of a motive and the ensuing task behaviour is believed to offer a fruitful framework to explore task motivation afresh, and the talk concludes by addressing the practical question of what makes L2 tasks engaging.

About the speaker
Zoltán Dörnyei ((PhD in Psycholinguistics, Budapest; PhD in Theology, Durham) is Professor of Psycholinguistics at the School of English, University of Nottingham. He has published extensively on various aspects of language learner characteristics and second language acquisition, and he is the author of over 25 books, including Motivational Strategies in the Language Classroom (2001, Cambridge University Press), Research Methods in Applied Linguistics (2007, Oxford University Press), Motivating Learners, Motivating Teachers: Building Vision in the Language Classroom (2014, Cambridge University Press, with M. Kubanyiova), The Psychology of The Language Learner Revisited (2015, Routledge, with S. Ryan) and Motivational Currents in Language Learning: Frameworks for Focused Interventions (2016, Routledge, with A. Henry and C. Muir).

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