Intonation, Emotions, and Aesthetics: Fostering Learners’ Agency in Academic Writing Course in Indonesia

  • Sudimantara, Lala Bumela (Principal Investigator/Chief Investigator A)

Project: HDR ProjectPhD

Project Details


This study explores the development of learners’ agency in resources-based academic writing pedagogy in Indonesia. Not only does this pedagogical approach encourage critical thinking and creativity in a more learner-centred mode, but also triggers a break-away from the predominating linguistic-based approach that limits students’ capacity to grow as a better language user and future teacher. Informed by latest empirical findings from neuroscience, this study adopts the ideas that language learning is a multisensorial experience; is processed first in the right hemisphere of the brain through intonation; and should encourage learners to build their own template for long-lasting learning results. To this end, three pedagogical tools to enrich students’ learning experiences in an Academic Writing unit that is inquiry-based: Verbotonal-based Moodle, Reading for Emotions, and Aesthetics. This study shows that while the experimental groups performed slightly better than the control groups in the post-test, their specific agentive learning in the final paper vary in terms of the use of intonational and emotional resources. The better writers tend to construct each sentence with a regular number of chunks (4 to 5 chunks) where the peak shifts were properly placed, and the emotional resources were fulfilled. The inferior writers, in contrast, seem to find it difficult to utilise the chunking mechanism and emotional resources in the texts, thus leaving more rooms for improvement. This study suggests that both intonation and emotions can be engineered as valuable (foreign) language learning components in a technologically enhanced language learning environment.
Effective start/end date9/01/17 → …


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