Part III - Current communicative approaches  pp. 151-152

Current communicative approaches

By Jack C. Richards and Theodore S. Rodgers

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The chapters in Part III bring the description of approaches and methods up to the present time and describe some of the directions mainstream language teaching has followed since the emergence of communicative methodologies in the 1980s.

Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) marks the beginning of a major paradigm shift within language teaching in the twentieth century, one whose ramifications continue to be felt today. The general principles of Communicative Language Teaching are today widely accepted around the world and we consider the reasons for this in Chapters 14 and 19. In Chapter 14 we present what we now might call the “Classical View of Communicative Language Teaching.” The other chapters in this section trace how CLT philosophy has been molded into quite diverse teaching practices, although all would claim to embody basic principles of CLT.

Although the Natural Approach is not as widely established as CLT, Krashen's theories of language learning have had a wide impact, particularly in the United States, and the issues the Natural Approach addresses continue to be at the core of debates about teaching methods. Cooperative Language Learning originates outside of language teaching, but because it is compatible with many of the assumptions of Communicative Language Teaching it has become a popular and relatively uncontroversial approach to the organization of classroom teaching in many parts of the world.