Autonomy in the Digital Wilds: Agency, Competence, and Self-efficacy in the Development of L2 Digital Identities

Yiting Han, Jonathon Reinhardt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The term digital wilds has come to refer to the non-formal online spaces in and through which additional language (L2) learner-users, using a multifarious array of tools, platforms, and services, autonomously navigate personal learning trajectories (Sauro & Zourou, 2019), developing L2 digital literacies-mediated identities needed in life-wide settings. This article examined how three successful, autonomous English L2 learner-users critically and creatively engaged in L2 digital literacy practices, ranging from navigating social media and the Internet to ‘reprodusing’ (Reinhardt & Thorne, 2019) content on video-sharing sites. This article focuses on (1) the development of digital learner autonomy in successful English L2 learners and (2) the entanglement of L2 digital literacy practices, identities, and livelihoods. The analysis shows that agency, competence, and self-efficacy played key roles in autonomy development, which was inextricably intertwined with emergent identities and realized through the practice of digital literacies. The findings shed light on the potential role of language educators in leveraging activity in the digital wilds for formal learning purposes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)985-1015
Number of pages31
JournalTESOL Quarterly
Volume56
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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