As a new approach, the Neurolinguistic Approach elicits both interest and questions. It is important to have well-conceptualized research to contribute, through studies, to this new paradigm in the area of second-language education.
To accomplish this, it is necessary to undertake research studies that would allow:
- An enlargement and a better understanding of the theoretical foundations of the approach;
- A better understanding/development of this approach, in particular through variations in the contexts where it is applied (child learners/adult learners, varying degrees of intensity, the importance of teaching strategies, etc.);
- Identification of difficulties and also of the constraints and limits of NLA implementation at different levels (teachers, students, establishments);
- Modifications/improvements to certain aspects, if they should prove necessary.
Examples of the many research papers written by the co-developers of the NLA may be found at http://uqam1.academia.edu/ClaudeGermain
A number of research studies have been undertaken recently on the effects of the Neurolinguistic Approach and Intensive French and the learning of French as a second language, by researchers at several universities.
Examples of Research Undertaken by the Co-Developers of the NLA
There are numerous subjects that researchers could examine. Among those that are currently of great interest in the area of L2 learning:
- The concept of internal grammar, its operationalization in research and its characteristics at different levels;
- Internal grammar and its relationship with the threshold levels proposed by Cummings (1984) in L2 learning;
- Development of reading skills and the role of internal grammar;
- A re-conceptualization of traditional grammar to facilitate the distinction between internal and external grammar;
- NLA teaching strategies to teach internal grammar (for oral competence) and for external grammar (for writing skills);
- Adaptations of teaching strategies for adult students;
- Cognitive development in the NLA;
- Subject integration and results in other subjects.