EML510 Language: Theory, Acquisition & Development (8)


The foundations of this subject are the major language and language development theories informing TESOL practices, approaches, and methods. Taking a socio-cultural perspective, this subject will consider the importance of context for language development. It will also explore recent developments in language learning theory that influence TESOL practice including power relations, identity and globalisation.

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 2
DistanceBathurst Campus
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: EML510
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Teacher Education

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to synthesize and evaluate major theories, approaches, and methods of first and subsequent language acquisition and development;
  • be able to describe language as a cognitive and socio-cultural meaning system;
  • be able to analyse the implications of culture, first language (L1) discursive practices, and context in shaping second language (L2) learning;
  • be able to reflect critically on the implications of second language acquisition (SLA) theory for classroom practice; and,
  • be able to critique and analyse current issues in SLA theories and their implications for practice.


The subject will cover the following topics:
  • Second language acquisition (SLA) theory, approaches, and methods including behaviourism, cognitivism, interactionism, constructivism and bilingualism
  • An introduction to functional approaches to language
  • SLA contexts and their implications for teaching and learning
  • The role of culture and first languages in second language teaching and learning
  • Current issues in SLA, e.g. identity, globalisation, power relations, ICTs, etc.


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.