In SLA studies, L2 performance is often assessed in terms of complexity, accuracy and fluency (CAF) of speech. There is a consensus among researchers about the usefulness and validity of these constructs. However, many suggest that CAF measures do not cover all aspects oral performance, and that a separate performance descriptor assessing communicative success should be included. Until now, however, there has been no unanimity as to how to name that construct (e.g., functional adequacy, communicative adequacy, communicative success, pragmatic appropriateness, successful task completion, stylistic appropriateness, etc.) and by which features it is determined or measured. In this talk, I will present a synthesis of my research program on stylistic appropriateness in French L2, highlight some of the limitations of the instruments that have been used to assess this construct, and finally discuss the relative importance and usefulness of stylistic appropriateness for assessment of L2 oral performance.


The FAS seminar is an inter-departmental seminar series at Stockholm University, involving the Dept of Romance Studies and Classics, the Dept of English, the Dept of Language Education, and the Centre for Research on Bilingualism. FAS = Forskning om andraspråk – ‘Research on second languages’