After Grammar Translation Method, it emerged in the late 1950s and 1960s. This method is very popular even today. On the foundation of drill-based techniques and exercises.
Based on the theory of learning “behaviorism”, which viewed all learning as a process of forming habits. Language learning is basically a matter of developing a set of habits through drilling.
Based on the theory of language: “structural linguistics”.
Priority was given to spoken, rather than written language.
It was also called, The Army Method.
Teach the language, not about the language. Do not teach grammar explicitly. Teach language through analogy, not analysis.
Audiolingualism does have a number of limitations (Williams & Burden, 1997):
- The role of the learners is a fairly passive one; they are merely directed to respond correctly to stimuli. There is little active engagement in analysing the language, or developing their own strategies to learn more effectively or initiating discussions or negotiating meanings.
- There is little concern for what goes on inside the learners’ heads.
- Audiolingual drills can be carried out with little attention to the meaning that the language conveys.
- There is no room for the actual process of interaction and negotiation of meanings which is an important feature of communication in a language.
- The making of mistakes is an important part of learning. However, Audiolingualism, with its emphasis on correct responses, does not allow for learning from mistakes.