1st Edition

Sociocultural Theory and the Pedagogical Imperative in L2 Education Vygotskian Praxis and the Research/Practice Divide

    268 Pages
    by Routledge

    268 Pages
    by Routledge

    Explicating clearly and concisely the full implication of a praxis-oriented language pedagogy, this book argues for an approach to language teaching grounded in a significant scientific theory of human learning—a stance that rejects the consumer approach to theory and the dichotomy between theory and practice that dominates SLA and language teaching. This approach is based on Vygotsky’s sociocultural theory, according to which the two activities are inherently connected so that each is necessarily rooted in the other; practice is the research laboratory where the theory is tested. From the perspective of language education, this is what is meant by the ‘pedagogical imperative.’ 

    Sociocultural Theory and the Pedagogical Imperative in L2 Education
    • Elaborates  a new approach to dealing with the relationship between theory and practice—an approach grounded in praxis—the dialectical unity of theory and practice
    • Presents an analysis of empirical research illustrating praxis-based principles in real language classrooms
    • Brings together cognitive linguistics and sociocultural theory ─ the former provides the theoretical knowledge of language required of praxis and the latter furnishes the theoretical principles of learning and development also called for in a praxis approach
    • Offers recommendations for redesigning teacher education programs

    Its timely focus on the theory-practice gap in language education and its original approach to bridging it put this book at the cutting edge of thinking about Vygotskian sociocultural theory in applied linguistics and SLA.




    Chapter 1 Theory/Practice Gap in Applied Linguistics

    Chapter 2 Sociocultural Theory and the Dialectic of Praxis: An Alternative to the Theory/Research-Practice Gap

    Chapter 3 Psychology of the Social Environment

    Chapter 4 A Theory of Developmental Education

    Chapter 5 L2 Systemic Theoretical Instruction: Experimental-Developmental Studies

    Chapter 6 L2 Systemic Theoretical Instruction: Intact Classroom Studies

    Chapter 7 The Zone of Proximal Development and Dynamic Assessment

    Chapter 8 Dynamic Assessment and L2 Development

    Chapter 9 Conclusion



    James P. Lantolf is the George and Jane Greer Professor in Language Acquisition and Applied Linguistics in the Department of Applied Linguistics at Penn State University, USA.

    Matthew E. Poehner is Associate Professor and Program Director of the K-12 teacher certification program in World Languages Education and Applied Linguistics in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Penn State University, USA.

    "This book’s up-to-date, detailed exposition of L2 SCT research, concepts, and pedagogical practice is certain to appeal to experienced and curious SCT researchers." —Applied Linguistics