'The real world': lived literacy practices and cultural learning from community placement

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Andrew, Martin (2011) 'The real world': lived literacy practices and cultural learning from community placement. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, 34 (2). pp. 219-235. ISSN 1038-1562


‘Real world’ communities beyond the classroom, volunteer communities in particular, offer migrant and international students of English as an Academic Language (EAL) chances to participate in authentic linguistic and cultural interactions. This paper describes findings from a three-year study investigating and evaluating the cultural and linguistic value of volunteering in community placements to degree-level EAL learners. In particular, this study reports on students’ application of communicative and lexical knowledge acquired in class but practiced in real world communities. Further, it reports on learners’ acquisition of potentially useful procedural knowledge, and on their situated learning through encountering ‘Discourses’ (Gee, 1990). Using data from learners’ reflective journals, this paper discusses four ‘lived literacy practices’ (Barton & Hamilton, 2000) that 60 second-year degree-level EAL learners describe. New Literacy Studies (NLS) approaches to linguistic and cultural acquisition offer fresh frames for understanding learners’ living of literacy practices. These approaches sit within social constructionism, where learning trajectories occur in communities of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991 and Wenger, 1996), and alongside poststructuralist notions of identity formation where identities are in flux and subject to learner investment (Norton, 2000).

Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/10338
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Education
Historical > FOR Classification > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy
Keywords ResPubID24821, community placements, International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, IBDP, IELTS, lexical awareness
Citations in Scopus 6 - View on Scopus
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