Analysis and exemplary cases of design criteria for learner-centered materials: A case study of America social studies textbook
This study examined design criteria and exemplary cases for learner-centered materials. The curriculum appreciation approach was adopted. First, 24 design criteria for learner-centered materials were produced based on a review of studies on learner-centered theories and concepts. Then these criteria were employed to evaluate a social studies textbook from Pearson Publishing Company. Based on this evaluation, five learner-centered strategies were defined for use by textbook designers. 1. Various functional elements should be defined to guide learner-centered tracks or foci. 2. The essential subject matter of the whole unit should be defined, and design of the content and evaluation must be closely linked to it. 3. Diversified and multilevel learning materials and activities should be provided to expand the breadth and depth of users’ learning. 4. Reading comprehension skills should be embedded in the design of the text and learning activities to cultivate learners’ thinking abilities. 5. Enhancing learner subjectivity in the classroom should be the priority when designing learner-centered materials.
Chen, L.-H., & Yeh, W.-L. (2018). Analysis and exemplary cases of design criteria for learner-centered materials: A case study of America social studies textbook. Journal of Textbook Research, 11(1), 1-36.
Analysis of images of the elderly in Chinese-language junior high school textbooks in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, and Singapore
This study explored the significance of images of the elderly in Chinese-language high school textbooks from publishers in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Singapore, using quantitative and qualitative methods. The results revealed that the elderly seldom appear in textbooks. The most common elderly characters are grandparents. Gender and occupational stereotypes still exist. The active and passive rhetoric in the target textbooks shows the elderly as altruistic in unfavorable situations. More specifically, Taiwanese textbooks emphasize the elderly’s self-actualization. Mainland Chinese textbooks describe them through political issues such as classes, wars, and patriotism. Hong Kong textbooks often comment on the life experiences of lower-class elderly people. Singaporean textbooks show the variety of character among elderly people and their social contribution. Images of the elderly are founded on caring for others and being cared for in daily life; transmitting their life experience, wisdom and culture; making a contribution in both the upper and lower classes; and reinterpreting the meaning of the old.
Chen, J.-T., & Fang, C.-H. (2018). Analysis of images of the elderly in Chinese-language junior high school textbooks in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Journal of Textbook Research, 11(1), 37-68.
Frequency and variability of figurative uses of motion verbs in readers for pre-intermediate EFL learners
Graded readers have been introduced in English classes to increase exposure to authentic reading texts based on learners’ current competencies, with the aim of enhancing foreign or second language (FL/SL) acquisition. Figurative uses of vocabulary, such as metaphor and metonymy, are common in both everyday language and the graded readers that expose learners to authentic target language. However, studies on figurative language in readers have been rare, and more research is necessary. This study examined figurative uses of motion verbs in five graded readers for pre-intermediate EFL learners at a university in Southern Taiwan in terms of frequency, variability, and other characteristics. Conceptual metaphor and conceptual metonymy were the two types of data collected from the readers. The results showed quantitatively that metaphoric uses of motion verbs occur in readers with greater frequency and variability than metonymic uses. In addition, the more advanced the reader, the more frequent and variable are the metaphors. Manner-of-motion verbs appear to be more frequent in metaphoric uses, whereas path-of-motion verbs predominate in metonymic uses. A qualitative analysis centering on the seven themes of metaphor and physiological metonymy detailed in this study could provide instructors with improved pedagogical resources for use in an FL/SL context.