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Talk by Iryna Lenchuk

Incorporating language structure into a communicative task: An analysis of the language component of a communicative task in the LINC Home Study Program

The purpose of this talk is to present the results of the analysis of a task included in the LINC Home Study (LHS) program. LHS is a federally funded distance education program offered to newcomers to Canada who are unable to attend regular Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) classes. For the purpose of this talk, a task is selected from one instructional Module of LHS that was offered as a demonstration Module for the general public. In this task, a language structure (a gerund) is selected and analyzed. Specifically, the analysis presented in this paper focuses on how language structure is integrated into the task. The integration of language structure into the task is assessed against the criteria outlined in the Task-Based Language Teaching and Learning (TBLT) literature and the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLBs) guidelines. The analysis of this task demonstrates that the presentation of language structure in the task violates the main principle of a meaning-based approach to second language teaching (i.e. TBLT) that emphasizes the primacy of meaning over language forms. This paper calls for more research on LHS considering the fact that LHS is a national program that is identified as one of the Best Practices in Settlement Services language programs.