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Does learning a foreign language make you smarter? What should we teach about how language works? | Miguel Angel Munoz and Michael Rundell (Cardiff, UK)

British Council Seminar Series

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 from 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM (BST)

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Share Does learning a foreign language make you smarter? What should we teach about how language works? | Miguel Angel Munoz and Michael Rundell (Cardiff, UK)

Event Details

Tuesday 3 June 2014

1730 - 2030 | Parc Hotel by Thistle, Park Place, CF10 3UD

Cardiff


Does learning a foreign language make you smarter? Scientific research on the cognitive costs and benefits of learning a foreign language 


Miguel Angel Munoz  


There are many reasons to learn a language. Cognitive development is often one of the most cited

ones. Learning a language is said to improve memory, attention, multitasking performance and

mental health. Language learners and teachers can benefit from a deeper understanding

of the mental benefits associated with learning a foreign language but this understanding should be

based on sound scientific evidence rather than pop psychology. This presentation aims to present a

balanced and accessible overview of the latest research published in this area in order to dispel

some myths and highlight the real cognitive benefits of learning a foreign language.


Attendance Aims

  • To gain a clear and data-driven understanding of the cognitive benefits and costs associated with learning a foreign language.
  • To develop critical awareness about pseudoscientific claims


Biography

Miguel Á. Muñoz (DELTA, M.A. University of Kansas, M.A. UIMP-Instituto Cervantes) has taught

English, French and Spanish in Spain, Morocco, Reunion Island and the United States. He currently

teaches general English at the Escuela Oficial de Idiomas in Guadalajara.


There are rules, and there are rules: What should we teach about how language works?


Michael Rundell

 

 

This seminar asks, who makes the rules about what makes language 'correct'? Is there one

'Standard English' to which we all must adhere, or should we expect linguistic rules to be bent and

broken over time? Join this presentation for an alternative (but equally rigourous) view of learning

about language.


Attendance Aims

Attendees will come away with a clearer understanding of what is meant by 'rules' in the context of

language and language-teaching, and with an idea of why languages change and how this happens.

An interesting question, which we will explore in the seminar. is how we reconcile a descriptive,

evidence-based approach to analysing language (which is fundamental to corpus linguistics) with

learners' aspirations to achieve accuracy and fluency in another language.   


Preparation

It would be useful for teachers to think about (and discuss among themselves or with their students)

any aspects of language use which they dislike or disapprove of. Is their objection to a particular

usage rational and well-founded, or is it based on what they were taught themselves or simply on

prejudice? It would also be useful to look at this short blog post:

http://www.macmillandictionaryblog.com/because-i-say-so ...where some of the issues that come up

in the seminar are previewed.

 

Biography

Michael has been in the dictionary business since 1980. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Macmillan

Dictionary(macmillandictionary.com) and co-author of the Oxford Guide to Practical Lexicography. He

has been working with language corpora for 30 years, and is deeply involved in the new lexicographic

revolution –  the migration of reference resources from print to digital media. 

www.lexmasterclass.com/people/michael-rundell/

 

Who is this for?

All English Language teachersEFL, ESOL, EAL - from newly qualified to experienced.


Programme (approx.)

1730 – 1800 Welcome and refreshments

1800 – 1855 Does learning a foreign language make you smarter? Scientific research on the 

                   cognitive costs and benefits of learning a foreign language with Miguel Angel 

                   Munoz

1855 – 1905 Short break

1905 – 2000 There are rules, and there are rules: What should we teach about language learning? 

                   with Michael Rundell

 

2000 – 2030 Networking reception


Attendees will also have the opportunity to discuss global job opportunities with

the British Council.


Every seminar is free of charge, however places are limited.

 

@BCseminars

bcseminars1@britishcouncil.org

englishagenda.britishcouncil.org/seminars

Have questions about Does learning a foreign language make you smarter? What should we teach about how language works? | Miguel Angel Munoz and Michael Rundell (Cardiff, UK)? Contact British Council Seminar Series

When & Where


Parc Hotel by Thistle
Park Place
CF10 3UD Cardiff
United Kingdom

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 from 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM (BST)


  Add to my calendar

Organizer

British Council Seminar Series

The British Council Seminar Series takes place across the UK, including once a month in London. The seminars are intended to provoke debate and discussion on current issues in English Language teaching and can contribute to the continuing professional development of English Language teachers based in, or visiting, the United Kingdom.

Every seminar is free of charge and includes the opportunity to network with fellow ELT practitioners.

 

@BCseminars 

bcseminars1@britishcouncil.org

www.teachingenglish.org.uk/seminars

  Contact the Organizer
The United Kingdom’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. A registered charity: 209131 (England and Wales) SC037733 (Scotland).

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