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Three Approaches to Task-Based Syllabus Design

Michael H. Long and Graham Crookes
TESOL Quarterly
Vol. 26, No. 1 (Spring, 1992), pp. 27-56
DOI: 10.2307/3587368
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3587368
Page Count: 30
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Three Approaches to Task-Based Syllabus Design
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Abstract

Choice of the unit of analysis in syllabus design is crucial for all aspects of a language teaching program. A variety of units, including word, structure, notion, function, topic, and situation, continue to be employed in synthetic, Type A, syllabuses. While each is relevant for analyses of the target language and its use, nativelike linguistic elements find little support as meaningful acquisition units from a language learner's perspective. Task has more recently appeared as the unit of analysis in three analytic, (primarily) Type B, alternatives: procedural, process, and task syllabuses. Each of these has certain limitations, too, but when the task syllabus is combined with a focus on form in task-based language teaching, the task receives more support in second language acquisition (SLA) research as a viable unit around which to organize language teaching and learning opportunities.

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