Working Memory Capacity, Language Learning and Dyslexia: Inclusion of Dyslexic Learners in Teaching English as a Foreign Language

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In my doctoral research I studied how different types of second language grammar input are processed by learners and how their working memory capacity influences input processing. There were four different input conditions: two explicit and two implicit. Hundred second language learners of English in Sri Lanka participated in this study. The study used a pre/post test design, four working memory tests and eye-tracking was used to collect data on how learners pay attention to the target construction. The findings highlighted that explicit input techniques are more beneficial than the implicit input techniques when acquiring novel grammatical constructions. Moreover, the results indicated that working memory capacity was very strongly related to how language learners process second language input as learners with high working memory capacity showed clear advantages in processing input in all instructional conditions. These findings are directly relevant in teaching a second/foreign language to learners with dyslexia, who tend to have a shorter working memory capacity and process novel language input in different ways to the other learners. In this talk, I will discuss these current research findings related to working memory, dyslexia and language learning and highlight the possible inclusive classroom practices to facilitate such learners in the language classroom.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017
EventAsiaTEFL Conference 2017 - Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Duration: 13 Jul 201715 Jul 2017


ConferenceAsiaTEFL Conference 2017

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