Puntos de encuentro is an innovative task- and content-based textbook that rethinks Advanced Spanish instruction. Based on research on second language acquisition in the classroom, it combines language-as-discourse instruction with content-based learning.
Puntos de encuentro emphasizes the analysis of spoken and written texts drawn from real-world sources, such as journalism, history, literature, and film. Students reflect on language forms and functions in context; then, through task-based, collaborative activities, they process language and content at higher levels by synthesizing information, distinguishing opinions from facts, drawing comparisons, or debating points of view.
The source materials have been carefully selected to introduce students to relevant and engaging issues in the Spanish-speaking world, such as the environment, human rights, indigenism, immigration, or bilingualism. In order to understand these topics better, students are asked to compare Spanish-speaking societies with their own, promoting cross-cultural awareness.
Using the analysis of complex, contemporary issues as means to achieve advanced proficiency in Spanish results in more language production and increased multicultural understanding, while enhancing critical thinking skills. This groundbreaking approach makes Puntos de encuentro unique among Advanced Spanish textbooks.
MarÌa J. de la Fuente holds a Ph.D. in Spanish and second language acquisition from Georgetown University. She is currently an associate professor at The George Washington University, where she directs the Spanish language program. The author of several research articles in the field of task-based language learning, she is the current Editor in Chief of the Open Journal of Modern Linguistics. She has also authored the task-based Spanish textbook Gente.
Beatriz Cobeta received her B.A. in Spanish language and literature and her M.A in teaching Spanish as a second language from the Universidad AutÛnoma de Madrid and the UNED, respectively. She has been a teaching instructor and coordinator of Spanish language at The George Washington University since 2007, and is also currently a research associate at Oberlin College.
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