Richard LaBontee
Richard LaBontee

Richard LaBontee is currently employed by the University of Gothenburg in the Unit for Academic Language as a Language Supervisor specializing in writing and language development for faculty, teaching training, and research development in academic language development.

Richard holds a PhD in Swedish as a Second Language from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden; and a MSc in Applied Linguistics and Second Language Acquisition from the University of Oxford. His core research interests include: Vocabulary Acquisition, SLA, EAP, Academic Language Use and Development, Language Learning Strategies, Individual Differences and Motivation, and Strategy Instruction.

Language Learning Strategies: What are they, and how can they support Swedish L2 learning?

Högre seminarium med Richard LaBontee.



Every year, Sweden sees more and more newly arrived residents who have come to work, study or build a life there. As part of the integration process into Swedish society, one of the most important and significantly challenging hurdles to cross can lie in learning the Swedish language.

This project has aimed to synthesize the combined efforts of five research studies that took place in Sweden. These studies focus on the strategies that learners use to enhance and motivate their vocabulary learning processes. The main goals of this project are to establish a way to classify and describe these strategies, to create a questionnaire made specifically to collect information about strategic learning in the Swedish second language learning context, and to find out what strategies novice adult learners use when learning vocabulary.

The first three studies of this project act to create, develop, and situate a new questionnaire, the Swedish Vocabulary Learning Strategy Survey (SVLSS), that is designed to collect information on novice adult learners' vocabulary learning strategy use. The fourth and fifth studies explore these learners' strategy use as related to their individual and group differences.

Key findings from these studies concern questionnaire development, the nature of vocabulary learning strategies, and the ways novice adult Swedish language learners approach vocabulary learning. Suggestions for using the SVLSS to perform research or as a teaching and learning tool are provided, and future plans for the instrument with regards to pedagogical application and use in research are outlined.