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Stephen Krashens L2 Acquisition Theory

Acquisition refers to the subconscious process identical in all important ways to the process children utilize in acquiring their first language.
Learning refers to the conscious process that resultts in knowing about language.

In other words
acquisition is the result of natural interaction with the

language via meaningful communication, which sets in motion developmental processes akin to those outlined in first language acquisition, and learning is the result of classroom experience, in which the learner is made to focus on form and to learn about the linguistics rules of the target language

Five Hypotheses according to Krashen

2. 3.


The acquisition Learning Hypothesis The Natural Order Hypothesis The Monitor Hypothesis The Input Hypothesis The Affective filter Hypothesis

1. The Acquisition-Learning Hypothesis

Acquisition = subconsciously picking up
Learning = conscious Error correction Explicit instruction Children acquire language better than adults

2. The Natural Order Hypothesis

Grammar structures are acquired in a predictable order.
Some grammatical structures tend to be acquired early

while others late. L2 learning order is different from L1 order L2 learning adults and children show similar order

3. The Monitor Hypothesis

Acquisition has the central role= our utterances are

produced by the acquired system. Learning only functions as a Monitor or editor Monitor is thought to alter the output of the acquired system before the utterance is actually written or spoken. 3 conditions needed to use Monitor
If learners are given enough time When Focus on form is important enough for them If the learners know the grammar.

When Monitor is not used, errors are natural.

4. The Input Hypothesis

We acquire by comprehensible input (i) + 1
Input Hypothesis relates to acquisition, not learning

Focus not on structure but on understanding the message

Do not teach structure deliberately; i+1 is provided

naturally when input is understood Production ability emerges. Its not taught directly

5. The Affective Filter Hypothesis

1. Motivation 2. Self-confidence 3. Anxiety Krashen claims that learners with high motivation, self-

confidence, a good self-image, and a low level of anxiety are better equipped for success in second language acquisition. Low motivation, low self-esteem, and debilitating anxiety can combine to 'raise' the affective filter and form a 'mental block' that prevents comprehensible input from being used for acquisition. In other words, when the filter is 'up' it impedes language acquisition. On the other hand, positive affect is necessary, but not sufficient on its own, for acquisition to take place.

The affective filter

Krashen, Stephen D. Principles and Practice in Second

Language Acquisition. New York, NY: Prentice Hall, 1987. Stephen Krashen's Theory of Second Language Acquisition available at: Mitcell, R. and Florene Myles.2004. Second Language Learning Theories. London: Hodder Arnold.