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Language Teaching

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Communities, Language & languages -- Study & teaching, Secondary education, Language & languages -- Ability testing, Collocation (Linguistics), Websites, Native language, Semiotics


This article begins with an overview and problematization of the term community through a brief assessment of its history, diverse uses, core attributes, heterogeneous elements, and collocational companions. Following this, I describe demographics and processes associated with collective engagement in digitally mediated environments. Utilizing select alternatives to the term ‘community’ and incorporating the cultural-historical notions of mediation and activity, I then present research describing exogenous influences affecting educational uses of technology in L2 settings, the use of instant messaging and blogging for out-of-class FL interaction at the secondary school level, and a pedagogically focused example of a remixing text posted to an online fan fiction website. I conclude by proposing bridging activities as an approach for connecting the emergent logics of digital vernaculars with the analytics of formal schooling.


Copyright 2008 Cambridge University Press

Revised version of a plenary paper presented as part of the University of Wisconsin–Madison Language Institute Lecture Series, 7 February 2006.



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