Content-Based Language Teaching and Academic Language Development

Authored by: Marguerite Ann Snow

Handbook of Research in Second Language Teaching and Learning

Print publication date:  December  2016
Online publication date:  November  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138859814
eBook ISBN: 9781315716893
Adobe ISBN: 9781317508366


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Content-based language teaching is an approach to the teaching of second/foreign languages in which language and content are integrated in instruction. What constitutes “content” in language teaching methodology has changed over the decades as methods for second/foreign languages have evolved from specifying structures (e.g., tenses) in the grammatical syllabus to language functions (e.g., invitations) in the notional functional approach. By the 1980s, content in many language teaching programs had come to be defined as the topics, themes, or subject matter through which second language learners could learn both forms and functions as well as the four skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking (Snow, 2014). For more than three decades, content-based instruction (CBI) has taken its place alongside other approaches such as task-based learning as a form of communicative language teaching (Dueñas, 2004; Duff, 2014; Larsen-Freeman & Anderson, 2011; Richards & Rodgers, 2014).

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