Reading in a Foreign Language (RFL)
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NFLRC Celebrates 25 Years

When the U.S. Department of Educationʻs Title VI Language Resource Centers (LRC) Program began, the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM) was one of its first recipients, establishing the National Foreign Language Resource Center (NFLRC) in 1990. It is now the oldest LRC in existence and is pleased to be celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.

Throughout its history, the NFLRC’s main goal has been to expand the nation’s capacity to teach and learn foreign languages effectively, drawing on UHM’s strengths in instructional technology, applied linguistics, second language acquisition, and language teaching. NFLRC projects, materials, professional development events, and research focus primarily on the less commonly taught languages of East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, but they bear relevance to the learning and teaching of all languages.

As part of its accomplishments, the NFLRC has established three well-regarded online refereed journals (Language Learning & Technology, Reading in a Foreign Language, and Language Documentation & Conservation) and an active publications division which has produced numerous pivotal research monographs in the field of applied linguistics and a multitude of free materials. The NFLRC has also offered popular summer institutes and organized and hosted many international conferences (the biennial International Conference on Language Documentation & Conservation, PacSLRF, SLRF, Pragmatics & Language Learning, and more). Current projects focus on developing and researching curricula and resources for project-based language learning (PBLL), best methods in online language teaching, and the organization of several professional development institutes and national and international conferences.

Check out the NFLRC website for our latest, exciting endeavors and thank you again to all our fans for all your support!

Call for papers: Special Issue of Reading in a Foreign Language (October 2015)

Connections between Second Language Reading and Writing

Guest editors: Betsy Gilliland and Jeongyeon (Jay) Park, Department of Second Language Studies, University of Hawai'i at Manoa
Sumission Deadline: February 1, 2015

Common knowledge holds that reading leads to improved writing, but we know relatively little about how it works or why some reading more directly influences some forms of writing. Since the 1990s, interest in linking the two second language literacy skills has increased with the help of meaningful perspectives put forward by L2 researchers (e.g., Belcher & Hirvela, 2001; Carson & Leki, 1993). Nevertheless, while there is extensive research on second language reading, and nearly as much research on second language writing, far less has been studied about the ways the two skills are related. More research is required to add depth to the synergistic relationship between the two (Hirvela, 2004).
This special issue of Reading in a Foreign Language endeavors to deepen the knowledge base of the linkages between L2 reading and writing for the benefit of both L2 reading AND L2 writing research and pedagogy. We are interested in papers that report on research studies of second language learners and speakers at all age and language levels. Studies of reading-writing connections in languages other than English are of particular interest.

Some questions papers might address:
How can teachers effectively integrate reading and writing instruction in L2 language classes?
How do expert L2 writers explain their experiences with reading? In what ways do they see their L1 and L2 reading experiences as being influential on their L2 writing?
What types of reading texts are most appropriate in composition classes? Do students perceive benefits of reading genres unrelated to the text types they are learning to write?
In what ways does intensive or extensive reading in an L2 classroom influence students’ L2 writing ability?
In what ways are L1 reading and writing proficiency reflected in learners’ L2 reading and writing proficiency? Are stronger L1 readers better L2 writers?
What (if any) relationships exist between L2 reading proficiency and L2 writers’ uses of source texts in writing? Are stronger L2 readers less likely to plagiarize or otherwise commit errors related to textual borrowing?
What features distinguish various reading-to-write processes in second language learning, such as summarizing, analyzing, or synthesizing?
Can writing-to-learn positively impact L2 learners’ reading proficiency? Their motivation/attitude about reading?
How can L2 teachers effectively integrate multiple literacies and new literacies into classroom instruction?
How do digital literacies change the way second language reading and writing are learned?

Belcher, D. D., & Hirvela, A. (Eds.). (2001). Linking literacies: Perspectives on L2 reading-writing connections. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.
Carson, J., & Leki, I. (1993). Reading in the composition classroom: Second language perspectives. Heinle and Heinle.
Hirvela, A. (2004). Connecting reading & writing in second language writing instruction. University of Michigan Press.

Language Learning and Technology

We would like to invite you to check out RFL's sister journal, Language Learning & Technology, which seeks to disseminate research to foreign and second language educators in the US and around the world on issues related to technology and language education. LLT is currently published three times per year (January, May, September). LLT is available free of charge to all readers and subscribers. Both RFL and LLT are sponsored by the NFLRC at the University of Hawai‘i.

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