For the adult English language learners there are a few obstacles that they need to overcome. The first is that they are a beginner again. They are the outsider, and most older adults are not accustomed to that, they can feel humiliated and feel they are losing their cultural identity. Galetcaia (2014) states that many times learners experience an urge to alter or reshape their identity which opens the door “to the socio-cultural world of a different Other” (p.4271). This means that as an adult English language learner (ELL) begins to learn English, they also develop a sense of “affiliation with the new domain” (p.4271), by imitating gestures, intonations, facial expressions and posture. These psychological reactions may vary, but according to Galetcaia (2014), the sensory perception as well as the intellectual processing are a part of the linguistic formation and is “closely attached to the socio-cultural language realities” (p.4271), which leads to the role of language ego. Secondly, according to Menn (2012), they are using more of their bottom-up processing than their top-down processing which takes away the resources they need to fully understand the content of what they are hearing (p. 357). Listening involves both top-down and bottom-up processing to make language learners effective listeners to natural speech. Botova (2010) states that “listening to a second language (L2) has been regarded as the most widely used language skill in normal daily life” (p.185). Listening then becomes a complex process that includes the use of phonetic, phonological, prosodic, lexical, and semantic skills, which allows the listener to underst...
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...olinguistic portion of the paper. Botova (2010) gives a breakdown of how top-down, bottom-up processing works and how this effects listening skills for second language learners. The most intriguing paper was from Luo and Gao and their analysis of listening skills. They discussed the theories about listening teaching which included the theories which will be in this paper. They also discussed the psycholinguistic, cognitive psychology, and information processing that is important in the ways people analyze and process language comprehension. Each of these resources will help to create a paper that shows how allowing an atmosphere of cultural acceptance, lessening the language ego, and engaging in active listening skills which incorporates both top-down and bottom processing to intersect, English language learners are able to gain the confidence necessary to succeed.
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