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Working memory, executive functions, and emotional intelligence in second language writing

Mavrou, I; (2020) Working memory, executive functions, and emotional intelligence in second language writing. Journal of Second Language Writing , 50 , Article 100758. 10.1016/j.jslw.2020.100758. Green open access

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Abstract

The current study employed an audiovisual blended-emotion stimulus to explore whether particular aspects of working memory (WM) and trait emotional intelligence (TEI) are significant determinants of linguistic complexity, accuracy, and fluency in second language (L2) writing. Fifty-nine L2 learners of Spanish completed a visuospatial WM task, four executive functioning tasks assessing inhibition, shifting, and updating abilities, a self-reported measure of TEI, and a writing task based on an animated short film that required participants to describe the plot of the film and express how they felt about it. Classical and Bayesian statistical methods were used to analyse the data. Updating ability proved to be the best variable to predict both subordination density and linguistic accuracy in L2 writing. Individual differences in controlled search and retrieval processes seem to account for these results. On the other hand, TEI was not linked to any of the L2 writing performance measures but did correlate negatively with updating ability. Furthermore, a trade-off was observed between fluency and lexical complexity, suggesting that paying attention to lexical choices to convey (emotional) meaning might slow down production speed.

Type: Article
Title: Working memory, executive functions, and emotional intelligence in second language writing
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.jslw.2020.100758
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2020.100758
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
Keywords: Social Sciences, Linguistics, Inhibition, Shifting, Updating, Executive functions, Emotional intelligence, Emotional discourse
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Culture, Communication and Media
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10123451
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