Developing a Foreign Language Geragogy: Teaching Innovations for Older Learners

  • Danya Ramírez-GómezEmail author
Part of the New Language Learning and Teaching Environments book series (NLLTE)


This chapter suggests modifying several teaching techniques in order to improve Japanese older adults’ foreign language learning. Such innovations include enhanced learner training, older learners’ reassessment of their abilities and their preconceptions regarding learning in old age, and the adjustment of content and content presentation. Although quantitatively inconclusive, qualitative data showed that these innovations enhance older adults’ learning experience and may improve performance in the long term. The study questions the common notion that older foreign language learners’ challenges result mainly from age-related cognitive decline and not from methodological issues. Also, this discussion promotes considering learner re-training as foundational to foreign language geragogical programs, and it argues that adjusting our views of how and why we teach foreign languages to older adults is crucial for a satisfactory learning process.


Foreign language geragogy Older adults Teaching methods Learning experience Performance Learner re-training Critical geragogy Learner attitude 


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Literacy Center of West MichiganGrand RapidsUSA

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