Studies in L2 Acquisition, particularly in Communicative Language Teaching, have pointed out the importance of using authentic language materials for learning. One of the major sources where foreign-language teachers collect authentic materials is through audiovisual media. Audiovisual media have the advantage of being easy to access using modern technology, often without previous associated problems such as dissemination time and localization restrictions. Featured with abundant spoken language input and cultural examples, such kind of materials are invaluable for developing learners’ linguistic and cultural competences.
This chapter aims to: 1) Review existent models of using authentic audiovisual media in L2 teaching and learning and rationales behind them. 2) Discuss the key factors to consider while using audiovisual media, such as the content suitability (relevance to learners’ needs and prior knowledge of the subject domain), comprehensibility (level of difficulty and complexity), and exploitability (readiness of the media to be incorporated into the design of learning activities), etc. 3) Demonstrate lesson plans utilizing authentic audiovisual media materials in a Chinese as a Foreign-language classes (CFL) for both general and specific purposes. 4) Analyze various types of pedagogical sound media materials that can be utilized in CFL teaching.
Three main ways of using authentic media material in CFL teaching will be examined, including: using media to demonstrate certain function, using media as primary/supplementary source of language input, and using media as prompt to solicit language output. In this chapter, we will focus on the use of fictional videos (e.g. films, sitcoms, etc.), nonfiction videos (e.g. news reports, documentaries, variety shows, and self-produced video broadcasts) and TV commercials.