Being a language learner—Is that all there is?
Lee, J. (2017). Being a language learner—Is that all there is? TESOLANZ, 34–43.
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/13696
Asian migrants are inevitably categorised as language learners. At times, it is the migrant's own definition and can be used as a support. At others, it is an imposition in two senses: it can be imposed by others and by institutions; and also acts as a hindrance to resettlement in the new country. Language learning raises issues of a sense of belonging and a sense of self-value. A narrative inquiry study of six Asian migrant women follows their experience as language learners over a twelve-month period, focusing on the different concepts above, as the women negotiate their identities, to finally divesting the label language learner. The findings suggest that there is a close link between a sense of belonging and a sense of self-value which influences the participants’ identity trajectories―towards valuable members of the mainstream society. The discussion poses two questions to education providers, ESL educators and policy makers: What does the image of language learner migrant do to the perception that others have of newcomers? How long is a newcomer a migrant?
This is an author’s accepted version of an article published in the journal: TESOLANZ. Used with permission.
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