Michael H. Long is Professor of ESL and Chair of the PhD Program in Second Language Acquisition at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He is a member of the Editorial Board of Studies in Second Language Acquisition and coeditor of the Cambridge Applied Linguistics Series.
Three Approaches to Task-Based Syllabus Design
Article first published online: 4 JAN 2012
1992 TESOL International Association
Volume 26, Issue 1, pages 27–56, Spring 1992
How to Cite
LONG, M. H. and CROOKES, G. (1992), Three Approaches to Task-Based Syllabus Design. TESOL Quarterly, 26: 27–56. doi: 10.2307/3587368
- Issue published online: 4 JAN 2012
- Article first published online: 4 JAN 2012
Choice of the unit of analysis in syllabus design is crucial for all aspects of a language teaching program. A variety of units, including word, structure, notion, function, topic, and situation, continue to be employed in synthetic, Type A, syllabuses. While each is relevant for analyses of the target language and its use, nativelike linguistic elements find little support as meaningful acquisition units from a language learner's perspective. Task has more recently appeared as the unit of analysis in three analytic, (primarily) Type B, alternatives: procedural, process, and task syllabuses. Each of these has certain limitations, too, but when the task syllabus is combined with a focus on form in task-based language teaching, the task receives more support in second language acquisition (SLA) research as a viable unit around which to organize language teaching and learning opportunities.