The nature of applied linguistics is an issue that has kept reappearing again and again during several decades. An established paradigm met severe difficulty during the 1960s, but has never been replaced by a coherent alternative. The major aim of this book is to present a new approach to the discussion about the nature of applied linguistics, one that investigates its deeper theory of science underpinnings. A second important aim is to explore what an alternative might actually look like, granted diverse developments since the original paradigm began to be questioned. Rather than argue the case for one specific alternative, the book suggest a viable 'tertium comparationis' for intellectual discussion across current tension and disparity. Such a common ground is strongly needed within our graduate and postgraduate programmes. The first part of the book consists of three chapters presenting applied linguistics as seen within theory and history of science. The emerging picture is empirically confronted with the world of practitioners.
The second part of the book consists of four chapters presenting tentative integration, in theory of language, theory of learning and research methodology and ends with an empirical study illustrating principles of research. The third part consists of a final chapter returning to theory of science, discussing ontological aspects of our core research object - problems of linguistic communication.
Lars Sigfred Evensen is Professor of Applied Linguistics at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU, Trondheim) and Chair of The Norwegian Association for Applied Linguistics (ANLA). He chaired The Nordic Research Group for Theoretical and Applied Text Linguistics and Discourse Analysis (NORDTEXT) 1987-1993 and has been an honorary board member since. His main research interests are in epistemology, discourse analysis, the acquisition of writing and technologically mediated interdisciplinary communication. He edited the journal Trondheim Papers in Applied Linguistics 1986-1989. He has edited the anthologies Nordic research in text linguistics and discourse analysis (1986), Innovation in the teaching of writing (in Norwegian, with Inge Moslet, 1993), Writing theory and classroom practices (in Norwegian, with Torlaug L. Hoel, 1997) and the interdisciplinary Thinking culture dialogically (with Craig Brandist, The International Bakhtin Centre, Sheffield, Finn Bostand and Hege Faber, NTNU, Trondheim, 2004).
Preface Part 1 Introduction Chapter 1. Applied linguistics as viewed from a theory of science Chapter 2. Competing paradigms in the history of applied linguistics Chapter 3. An empirical evaluation of competing paradigms Part II Introduction Chapter 4. Communication and discourse: Towards an integrated view Chapter 5. Approaches to learning Chapter 6. Approaches to research methodology Chapter 7. A methodological illustration Part III Introduction Chapter 8. A rational way ahead?