Language Learning 41:2, June 1991, pp. 235-273 One of the most cited pieces of research I’ve done on listening is this study of L2 learner uses of strategies in spoken interactions, which I did with the great Steve Ross when I was living in Japan.  Looking back at it now, I’m still very pleased with...
Probably the least popular approach to teaching listening is “deliberate practice.”  It’s not popular because, well, it’s not fun. It’s not fun because it forces you to confront aspects of your skill that are effectively your weaknesses, and most people find that rather uncomfortable!  When I played high school basketball, my least favorite part of...
Most teachers understand that listening is not truly an isolated skill – it always occurs in the context of some other sensorial experience or interaction or task.  As such, it would seem to be a waste of time to practice “just listening” (though spoiler alert: see my article on “deliberate practice”). In the real world,...
Another approach to teaching listening – which I like to use as a “signature approach” in academic contexts – is what I call “probing conversations” or “active conversations” or “academic conversations”.  This is really a way to get students to talk about what they understand, what they don’t understand, and how they might learn something...
When asked about approaches to teaching listening, I often recommend that teachers identify an initial philosophy around which to plan their instruction.   This is often more effective than trying a smorgasbord of interesting listening-based activities or simply flooding the students with listening input. My own basic philosophy for teaching listening is “comprehension building”, which...