• Apr 12, 2022 from 5:00pm to 6:00pm
  • Location: University Hall, 2nd Floor, Room 2300 (and zoom)
  • Latest Activity: Mar 28

Talk TitleThe Importance of Examining Gesture in Second/Foreign Language Learning and Teaching 


AbstractHave you ever wondered why people move their arms and hands when they speak? What these movements are called and what they mean? Whether they are ancillary to language or whether they are an integral part of language? What they have to do with second/foreign language learning and teaching? 

This talk will explain what these movements are from the perspective that speech and gesture form a single integrated dynamic system in which thought, language, and gesture develop over time and influence each other (McNeill, 1992, 2005, 2012). Following this, it will provide an overview of the types of studies that have been conducted in the field of second language acquisition that have investigated both learners’ and teachers’ gestures (for reviews, see Gullberg & McCafferty, 2008; Gullberg et al., 2008; Stam & McCafferty, 2008; Stam, 2013; Stam & Buescher, 2018; Stam & Tellier, 2022). It will present evidence from several studies (Stam, 2006, 2015, 2016, 2017; Stam & Tellier 2017, 2022; Tellier et al., 2013; Tellier et al., 2021) that demonstrate how examining gestures allows us to see L2 speakers’ conceptualizations in thinking for speaking and different tasks as well as how future language teachers vary their gestures depending on the proficiency of their interlocutor. It will point out why it is important to examine gestures in second/foreign language learning and teaching and what we miss when we do not.   


Zoom: The talk will also be livestreamed on Zoom. If you cannot join in person, please feel free to join on Zoom. I will be monitoring the chat as well if you would like to interact with our speaker. 


Meeting ID: 936 4146 5215
Passcode: 309230

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