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Hur löser de uppgiften?: En studie av underkända och högt betygsatta provtexter i svenska och svenska som andraspråk
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Languages, Department of Scandinavian Languages.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1909-8450
2016 (Swedish)In: Språk & Stil, ISSN 1101-1165, Vol. 26, 195-230 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A large number of texts written by students in the subject of Swedish as a second language in the national test in Swedish and Swedish as a second language receive a failing grade, in comparison to texts written in the subject Swedish. Even though there are plausible explanations for the results, it is of great importance that we learn more about the situation to optimize conditions for all students to succeed. In this study I investigate how four different groups of students respond to the same writing instruction. Groups are formed by grades (fail and pass with distinction) and subject (Swedish and Swedish as a second langue). The focus is on the group Fail in Swedish as a second language. Building on Systemic functional linguistics and Labov’s theories on narratives of personal experiences, 66 texts are analyzed as to how they connect to the writing instruction and how they are temporally organized. The study also includes a survey of recurrent themes in the texts. The results show that most students, in all groups, generally respond to the writing instruction in the same way. They primarily act on the part of the instruction which explicitly expresses a request, and they organize the text to unfold chronologically in a specific past. Differences seem most of all to be connected to how the part of the instruction that frames the writing situation is handled by the students. This might be explained by different experiences and different understandings of the culture and situation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Adolf Noreen-sällskapet för svensk språk- och stilforskning , 2016. Vol. 26, 195-230 p.
Keyword [en]
Swedish as a second language, national test writing, second language writing, text organization, writing instructions, text in context
Keyword [sv]
svenska som andraspråk, ämnesprov, andraspråksskrivande, textkomposition, skrivinstruktion, text i kontext
National Category
Specific Languages
Research subject
Scandinavian Languages
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-311938OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-311938DiVA: diva2:1061812
Available from: 2017-01-03 Created: 2017-01-03 Last updated: 2017-03-15Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Språket och skolämnet svenska som andraspråk: Om elevers språk och skolans språksyn
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Språket och skolämnet svenska som andraspråk: Om elevers språk och skolans språksyn
2017 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[en]
Swedish as a second language in school : On language use and conceptions of language
Abstract [en]

Since the school subject Swedish as a second language was established in the Swedish school system in the mid-1990s, the organization of the subject has varied widely across schools, and the outcomes have been poor. This thesis investigates these problems linguistically. The main objective is to explore the school subject Swedish as a second language in relation to the language of students taking the subject. Another aim of this thesis is to illuminate the complex relation between the Swedish language and the use and conception of Swedish as a second language. A critique of the concept of ‘language’ and of language attitudes in the school context is a recurring theme in the thesis.

The thesis contains four papers addressing different aspects of the school subject Swedish as a second language. Paper I examines texts and oral presentations from a group of students born in Sweden, analyzing their language from a normative, mainly grammatical, perspective. Paper II develops a model for analyzing text as activity. In Paper III, the model from paper II is applied to analyze students’ narrative texts written as responses to an assignment, focusing on texts that received failing grades. Papers I and III include comparisons with Swedish as a language and as a school subject. Paper IV, finally, analyzes views of language in policy documents.

One critical result of the thesis is the identification of a need for a raised awareness about language in schools and society. In the current situation it is hard to establish a discrete boundary dividing the language of students in the subject Swedish as a second language from the language of students in the subject Swedish, but differences can be observed, which in some sense resonates well with the definition of the subject given by the policy documents. Swedish as a second language in schools can be vaguely defined as Swedish with non-Swedish or foreign markers. The vague definition of the subject and the many linguistic conditions built into the subject entail that Swedish as a second language does not seem well-suited for anyone. Employing a combination of a traditional and an alternative view of language, as proposed in this thesis, may be a fruitful way to accommodate all students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Institutionen för nordiska språk, 2017. 64 p.
Series
Skrifter utgivna av Institutionen för nordiska språk vid Uppsala universitet, ISSN 0083-4661 ; 101
Keyword
Conception of language, text, Swedish as a second language, national test, policy for education, text analysis, student language, language as system, language as activity, systemic functional grammar
National Category
Specific Languages
Research subject
Scandinavian Languages
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-317496 (URN)978-91-506-2626-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-05-05, Ihresalen, Engelska parken, Thunbergsvägen 3, Uppsala, 10:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-04-12 Created: 2017-03-15 Last updated: 2017-04-12

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