GCLA 2016; 4: 3 – 8Juliana Goschler and Susanne NiemeierIntroduction: Cognitive approaches toL2 learning and teachingDOI 10.1515/gcla-2016-0003L2 learning and teaching are activities that clearly involve linguistic capacities,and thus it seems natural to assume that models and methods developed inlinguistics can contribute to solving questions which are central to languagepedagogy – crucially, the question how L2 learning and teaching can be improved.However, the relationship between language pedagogy and linguistics hastraditionally been an uneasy one. This is due, in part, to the dominance of generative approaches to language and language acquisition in academic linguistics. If one assumes – as generativists usually do – that linguistic knowledge isseparate from other cognitive and social abilities and resources, it is difficult toapply knowledge about learning processes in general to language learning andteaching. If one further denies – as is, again, common in generative linguistics –that linguistic knowledge is shaped by general cognitive processes and social interaction, attempts to apply linguistic models to L2 learning and teaching becomeessentially pointless.Put simply, generative models view language as a system of very generalrules that are not accessible to conscious deliberation and that, therefore, cannotbe taught straightforwardly; the many linguistic phenomena that do not followsuch general rules are then treated as
Yearbook of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association (to be published December 2013) – de Gruyter
Published: Nov 1, 2016
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