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- UCAS institution code
Year of entry: 2022
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Course unit details:
Language and Communicative Development in Educational Settings
|Unit level||Level 3|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1|
|Offered by||Division of Psychology and Mental Health|
|Available as a free choice unit?||No|
In this course unit, we focus on how children learn to communicate in the real world, with a particular emphasis on the communicative skills needed for survival and success in educational settings.
This unit aims to:
Build on students’ knowledge of how children develop the skills needed to communicate during the pre-school years. Consider the particular challenges for communicative success posed by the academic language used in education, and how children’s developing knowledge of language might support or impede success. Introduce students to empirical research and theoretical models relating to developmental disorders which impact on communicative development. Examine how language interventions can support children’s development. Consider how the different language backgrounds children experience can impact on communication in the classroom. Examine bilingual language development with its advantages and challenges. Consider children’s mind-reading abilities for successful communication. Consider the role of peers in children’s development of argumentation and collaborative problem-solving.
Teaching and learning methods
This unit will be delivered via lectures and seminars.
Knowledge and understanding
Describe, using appropriate empirical evidence:
how children’s understanding of complex grammatical constructions, necessary for academic success, changes over development;
the nature of developmental language disorders;
examples of interventions designed to support language learning;
the differences between languages, and what it means to be bilingual;
how children engage in mind-reading;
how children collaboratively solve problems;
how children reason with partners
Critically evaluate, in the light of appropriate empirical evidence:
the factors that influence children’s learning of complex sentences
how and why communicative development can go wrong
the effectiveness of language interventions
how differences between languages might influence classroom communication
factors affecting bilingual language development
development of mind-reading abilities
contexts facilitating children’s reasoning and argumentation
Critically evaluate theories of children’s communicative development using appropriate empirical evidence; Critically evaluate research into communicative development with reference to methodological considerations; Synthesise a body of research to produce a well reasoned and supported argument; Arrive at and present a clear conclusion or a research question on the basis of an evaluation of appropriate empirical evidence; Work as a member of a team to discuss a piece of empirical research or a case study and arrive at a shared understanding of its significance; Reflect on the content of empirical research papers and extract the key points
Use a range of sources (library, internet, electronic databases) to gather information; Plan how to construct a written argument based around appropriate empirical evidence. Engage via online discussion forums with peers and academic staff.
Transferable skills and personal qualities
Use a range of linguistic terminology appropriately; Independently gather and select the most relevant information from a body of work by using online and library sources; Produce a written summary of research for an educated audience; Work in a self-directed and supported way to achieve stated goals; Engage in group discussions and make contributions to a collective goal.
A coursework essay worth 60%, a coursework research proposal worth 35% and engagement activities worth 5%
Coursework essay - Students will receive a grade and written feedback before exam period.
Research Proposal - Students will receive a grade and written feedback before exam period.
Engagement Activities - Student submissions will be collated and common themes shared with students.
This will be supplemented by references to specific research papers for each lecture topic.
|Independent study hours|
|Anna Theakston||Unit coordinator|