Teaching L2 Speaking: Recommending a Holistic Approach

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Nathan Thomas


Speaking is often considered one of the most difficult skills to develop in a second or foreign language. Many traditional approaches to language teaching focus on text-based skill development or emphasize aural receptive skills. However, as English continues to grow as a global language, learners want and need to be able to express their ideas through speech. It is no surprise then that most recent approaches to teaching stress the importance of developing communicative skills. Unfortunately, many lack systematic procedures, are atheoretical, and/or have not been supported by empirical research. Therefore, this article will provide an overview of teaching approaches and methods as they relate to speaking instruction. Such a review would be trivial without making recommendations for practice, so one particular approach will be highlighted and then justified based on its sound theoretical underpinnings and empirical support for several of its defining characteristics. Implications for teachers will be discussed throughout.


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Thomas, N. (2019). Teaching L2 Speaking: Recommending a Holistic Approach. REFLections, 26(1), 134–145. Retrieved from https://so05.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/reflections/article/view/204022
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