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SLA Guest speaker: Shaofeng Li "Working Memory and SLA"

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Jiménez Hall 1117
Thursday, March 05, 2020 - 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM
Working memory —a cognitive device for simultaneous information storage and manipulation— has been center stage in second language acquisition research. Despite the abundance of research, there has been confusion over its architecture, mechanism, and measurement, and there has been conflicting evidence regarding its associations with the process and outcome of second language learning. This talk seeks to provide a critical synthesis of the research that has been accumulated over the past three decades, including major theoretical models and empirical evidence on the validity of the construct. The talk starts with a discussion of the components of working memory, followed by a synthesis of the various streams of research on its predictive validity (whether it is correlated with learning outcomes), convergent validity (whether it is correlated with variables in similar domains), and divergent validity (whether it has weaker or no correlations with  variables in other domains). The talk concludes by proposing ways to address existing issues and pointing out future directions.  
 
Shaofeng Li is an Associate Professor in Foreign and Second Language Education at Florida State University, where teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in second language  acquisition and language pedagogy. After receiving his Ph.D. in Second Language Studies from Michigan State University, he worked as a Senior Lecturer in Applied Language Studies at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. His main research interests include working memory, language aptitude, task-based instruction, and research methods. His publications have appeared in journals such as Applied Linguistics, Language Learning, Modern Language Journal, Studies in Second Language Acquisition, among others. 
 
Recommended readings:
Li, S., & Roshan, S. (2019). The associations between working memory and the effects of four different types of written corrective feedback. Journal of Second Language Writing, 45, 1-15.
Wen, Z., & Li, S. (2019). Working memory in L2 learning and processing. In J. Schwieter & A. Benati (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of language learning (pp. 365-389). Cambridge University Press.
 
If you cannot find the articles, please, e-mail Dr. Gor at kiragor@umd.edu or Mireia at todacosi@umd.edu.