Investigating the Idea of EAP Classroom Diglossia and Patterns of Code Switching


This small study is being conducted in a Sino-British University in China with preliminary year students learning academic reading and writing skills in English. It aims to discover why and when groups of Chinese students in an EAP classroom choose to use either English or Chinese during group work. It seeks to find whether they do so consciously or ‘slip’ back into Chinese, or whether they ‘correct’ themselves into using English as a result of expectations. It will also investigate the role of interlocutors within the classroom such as in exchanges with the tutor and the table leader, aiming to discover how great an influence these roles have on language choice. In order to do this, different groups of students across two different classes have been audio-recorded during lesson time. The classes were following the same lesson plan with the same tutor in similar group sizes. Participants were also given a short questionnaire prior to the recording to discover what they perceive they use and whether this corresponds to the recordings of their interactions and researcher observations have been noted to give the study a triangular approach to results. It is anticipated that data will show that code switching is heavily influenced by the interlocutor, students perceive use of English is the 'high' form, yet perhaps are not fully motivated enough to persevere when they cannot fully express themselves in English and therefore code switch between English and for task requirements and Chinese to discuss ideas.

Author Information
Lauren Knowles, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, China

Paper Information
Conference: ACLL2019
Stream: Group dynamics

This paper is part of the ACLL2019 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon