Lesson 1: Thinking of Listening

Guiding Principles

As you start thinking of listening and how to integrate it within your curriculum, consider some general questions related to the listening skill:

Question: Is listening a passive skill, as it is referred to sometimes? In speaking, we actively produce language; what do we do when we listen?


Language teachers discuss the view of listening as a passive skill.

Duration: 02:16

Question: To what extent is listening comprehension dependent on the listener's schema, or sociocultural perspective and prior knowledge? How does our schema help us form expectations when listening to something and thereby support comprehension?


On schema-based understanding and top-down processing.

Duration: 01:09

Question: What other type of processing do learners employ to comprehend a listening text?


On bottom-up processing in listening.

Duration: 01:40

Question: What kind of listening input is needed to develop listening proficiency in students? How can this input be provided? How can we deal with students at the elementary or low intermediate levels?


On the importance of providing large input in listening in the form of authentic materials.

Duration: 01:45

Question: To what extent should input in listening be based on authentic texts?


Discussion of why authentic texts are used in listening.

Duration: 01:21

Based on your own answers to these questions and the comments you've heard in the videos can you suggest five guiding principles that teachers should bear in mind when thinking of the listening skill?