Wim Gombert

CHAPTER 8. Summary, discussion and conclusion 131 DISCUSSION: DIFFERENCES IN PROCESSING SEQUENCING SKILLS TO AVOID COGNITIVE COMPETITION Any attempt to explain di erences between L2 teaching programs has to consider the distinction made by Long (2000) pertaining to meaning and form. is distinction is helpful in explaining why the DUB program might be more e ective than the SB program in the development of oral skills. Indeed, learning activities usually involve the acquisition of linguistic items which have a phonological form, an orthographic form and a meaning. Ultimately, in any approach, forms have to be paired with meaning. is so-called “form-use-meaning-mapping” (FUMM) enables learners to use the foreign language and can either be done fully implicitly without any attention to forms (focus on meaning), fully explicitly with a predominant attention to forms (focus on forms) or inductively on the basis of a learner-adapted, incidental focus on certain forms (focus on form). e introduction of the phonological and the orthographic form is done di erently in DUB and SB approaches and may a ect cognitive competition. In an SB approach, both phonological and orthographic forms are introduced simultaneously from the start. Each chapter in a coursebook typically starts with a text or a dialogue that students are expected to read and listen to. Although teachers usually have students focus on the phonological form rst by just listening to the text or the dialogue, the orthographic forms are introduced shortly a erwards, leaving little time for the (phonological) form-meaning mapping to become entrenched in the mind. Also, from the beginning, L1 equivalents are introduced to provide meaning in addition to contextual information. In the nal three years, the focus on grammatical and orthographic accuracy increases signi cantly, as this is generally expected to be necessary for students to learn to write. Each chapter in the SB coursebooks under investigation in this study explicitly focuses on grammatical and orthographic accuracy. At the same time, the amount of input through texts increases as this is generally expected to be necessary for students to prepare for the nal reading exams and form-use-meaning mappings are activated more frequently. As part of an SB approach, in short, FUMMs are acquired mainly explicitly with a predominant attention to forms. In a DUB approach, students are initially fully and exclusively immersed in oral communication as the teacher does activities using a detailed script which aims at repeatedly activating form-use-meaning mappings. From the beginning, gestures are introduced to provide associative meaning in addition to contextual information. e input is highly controlled in the rst three years using teacher scripts. Moreover, written text is not introduced until the second semester, a er six months, so that the phonological form has had time to become su ciently entrenched in the mind.